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Posts for: July, 2014

Recently Laura Caradonna-Dubiel completed her fifth Boston Marathon, each with times within the seven minute miles.  While this would be impressive for most people, what makes it even more impressive is that she had to miss the last two marathons due to a Morton’s Neuroma. “My feet were cramping up” she said in an interview, but “I was determined to finish. I kept think ‘Boston Strong’”.

A Morton’s Neuroma (or a plantar neuroma) is a condition that involves the nerves of the feet.  The term ‘neuroma’ refers to a benign growth that occurs around our nerves, causing the tissues around the nerves to become thickened and painful.  Typically, I see patients present with a neuroma between the third and fourth toes. 

Neuromas are thought to be the result of injury, pressure or persistent irritation.  This is why we mainly see them on the bottom of the foot, where the constant pressure from each step may contribute to their development.  Most of the time, no lump will be felt in the bottom of the foot, but instead, patients often tell me at my podiatry clinic in Crofton, Maryland that they feel a sort of burning pain in the ball of their foot.  Oftentimes, this is accompanies with tingling or numbness, especially when wearing shoes with a very narrow or tight toe box.  As the condition progresses, patients will typically experience more pain and tingling, increasing in severity over time.

An experienced podiatric specialist will be able to quickly discern whether your pain is from a Morton’s Neuroma, or from any of a multitude of causes.  The earlier a foot is examined, the greater the chance for intervention without the need for surgery.  This is why I strongly suggest we strongly suggest that anyone with foot pain see a podiatrist immediately, before conditions are exacerbated.  Additionally, people who have a previous history of bunion, flat foot or other biomechanical changes are at an increased risk for developing a neuroma.

Below are the tricks that I tell my patients to best prevent a painful neuroma:

  • Have your feet sized by a professional.
  • Wear shoes that are right for your feet!
  • See your foot care specialist immediately if are experiencing persistent pain (and if you’re in the area, come check us out at Crofton Podiatry).
  • Seek guidance on modifications to your workout routine to minimize forceful impacts.

 

By Brad Toll.


It seems Bette Midler’s toe has been catching recent attention following a tweet she posted of her toe in a cast with the comment, “New York Toes don’t love Texas Cowboy Boots”. Bette’s tweet was in reference to an ingrown toenail which had been causing her significant pain on her right great toe. While Bette originally blamed the ingrown toenail on her cowboy boots, she later admitted to it actually being the result of an improper pedicure.

However, there isn’t a need to fear the ingrown pain. Ingrown toenails are one of the most common things we see at our Crofton Podiatry clinic just outside of Gambrills and Annapolis, Maryland. Typically, they are the result of shoes that are too small or have received improper trimming. Cutting your nails too short encourages the skin to fold over the nail as it grows in, especially in combination with tight fitting shoes which constrict the toe box. Typically, patients present to us with redness, swelling, and maybe some bleeding or puss noted in their socks. 

Treatments for an ingrown toenail vary depending on the condition, but are very tame. While it may sound scary, surgery to correct an ingrown toenail is a very simple, in-office, procedure to numb the toe and remove the leading edge of the offending nail. In some situations the removal of the entire nail may be necessary, and steps can be taken to ensure that this removal is permanent by removing the nail root and preventing any further nail growth.

According to new sources, Bette ended up having to have her toenail clipped and trimmed back by a Podiatric Specialist in Dallas. While pedicurists may be able to make your nails beautiful, they may not always be doing what is best for your overall health. Ingrown toenails can become a source for infection, something that is especially concerning in the older or diabetic population.  If you notice the start of an ingrown toenail, or have had numerous troubles with them in the past, it is important that you speak with a podiatric specialist in your area to keep your feet healthy, and pain-free!

By Brad Toll.


It’s all over the news. Vibram, the company behind the revolutionary barefoot running shoes, is officially settling a multi-million dollar class-action lawsuit for false advertising. So if you’ve not been a member of the 70 million Americans who bought into the barefoot running fad, prepare to feel a bit vindicated. 

The FiveFingers lawsuit was initiated in 2012 by a Florida resident after she felt the company’s statements regarding barefoot shoes reducing the risk of foot injury and strengthening leg muscles may be misleading.  This lawsuit was similar to the previously settled lawsuits such as the 2011 lawsuit against Reebok International, and the 2012 Skechers USA lawsuit which both settled for over $25 million compared for false advertising of shoe-related health benefits.

However the American Podiatric Medical Association saw things differently than Vibrams stating, "Barefoot running has been touted as improving strength and balance, while promoting a more natural running style, however, risks of barefoot running include a lack of protection, which may lead to injuries such as puncture wounds, and increased stress on the lower extremities."

As I tell all of my patients, when it comes to matters of your health, it is of vital importance that you seek the consultation of a specialist and not rely the advertisements and fads that are commercially propagated. Whether it is prescription medication, interventional therapies, or foot gear, these all have significant impacts on your wellbeing and require discussion with a medical expert.  In the meantime – before you go into see your local foot doctor or come into see me at Crofton Podiatry in Crofton, Maryland, it is important that you look at these following details to see if you are eligible for a refund.

The settlement details how to file a claim:

·         Vibram has agreed to pay our $3.75 Million to customers

o   You must have purchased Vibram FiveFingers shoes, after March 21, 2009.

o   You can submit up to two pairs of shoes, from about $20-$50 a pair

o   The maximum refund to any individual is $94.

o   Claim forms and more information regarding the settlement may be accessed at www.fivefingerssettlement.com once the site goes live.

By Brad Toll.


By Brad Toll
July 05, 2014
Category: Feet Safety

2014’s 4th of July weekend celebrations are upon us – and it is time to celebrate!  In honor of celebrating our 238th birthday as a free nation, millions of Americans will be joining in on the whirlwind of parades, beaches, boating, fireworks displays and backyard grilling.  However, the easiest way to ruin the festive fun is through a surprise trip to the emergency room. If swimming, boating, or many other outdoor activities are part of your 4th plans, consider the following suggestions to stay safe and out of the doctor’s office this holiday season.

When fireworks or grilling are part of your plans make sure everyone is wearing full coverage shoes at all times. All too often, the enjoyment of the outdoors tempts our companions into going barefoot, a dangerous proposition when hot coals or embers may be unknowingly scattered across the ground.  Additionally, to prevent blisters, cuts or calluses, proper shoe wear is even more important during the holidays, when sharp objects such as bottle caps, broken glass, or metal trash may be lurking under every step. If sandals are a must for you – consider switching to sandals like Keens or other brands which have protective toe-guards.

Additionally – while your feet are important, so is the rest of your body too!  Hopefully with a few simple ‘steps’ to stay safe, we can ensure that everyone’s 4th of July around Crofton, Gambrills, and Annapolis Maryland is enjoyable and memorable.

  • To prevent heat exhaustion and dehydration, bring and drink plenty of water.  Oftentimes – much more than you would expect to need.
  • Every part of the body is at risk for sunburn.  Bring plenty sunscreen, apply it liberally and frequently, and make sure to spend time in the shade when possible.
  • Make sure to supervise all children, and be sure that everyone has adequate flotation devices when near the water.  Don’t rely on water wins or inflatable toys!
  • Make sure all food is well-cooked and not spoiled by the summer heat.

Remember – the worst way to celebrate the 4th is in the emergency department. Be safe, think critically before every activity, and most importantly…enjoy!

Dr. Brad Toll and the staff at Crofton Podiatry wishes everyone reading this a happy 4th July Celebration!





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2411 Crofton Lane, Suite 25
Crofton, MD 21114

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