Category Archives: General

The Hand-Shake: A Sweaty Situation?

So many important moments in life are sealed with a hand-shake, and simultaneously we are judged by this same action.  The shake can initially be a stressful social necessity, due to the technique of how much strength use, and for how long, but many have an added concern…  how sweaty will it be.

Hands and feet, like the rest of your body, sweat but some feet sweat a lot more.  Extremely sweaty feet can affect any age, generally runs in families, and is called hyperhidrosis.  It is not always known why this occurs, but is the result of sweat glands secreting an excessive amount of sweat, and not just in response to increased temperatures, but also to stress and emotional situations.  This often occurs body-wide, but is more noticeable on the feet and hands due to the glands being more dense there.  Though this condition is not generally a concern to your health, it can be very embarrassing and cause social withdrawal from situations in which the feet are bare or close to other people, such as at a spa or swimming pool.

There are many options for treating and living with this condition.  Investing in good socks that will absorb the sweat away from your skin and wearing a clean pair daily is a good place to start.  Choose shoes that are well ventilated and allow the shoes to air out over night before wearing them again.  Antiperspirant can be applied directly to the foot to decreased the secretion of sweat, and if this does not affect them enough there are several creams and sprays, both over the counter and prescription, that are more powerful and can help manage the condition, but will not cure it.  Several other treatments, such as iontophoresis and oral medications have been shown to actually treat or correct the condition.  If all else fails, the possibility of a surgical treatment, called a sympathectomy, may be an option, but generally only if all other options have failed.

If excessively sweaty feet is a concern for you, First Coast Foot & Ankle Cliniccan help.  Make an appointment today.  Dr. Reddywill rule out more serious causes for the excessive sweating, discuss what treatment is best for you, and get you headed to a drier tomorrow.

All shoes Are Not Created Equal

air-jordan-2011-dominate-another-day-rocket-shoes-video-commercial-600x338The 26.2 with Donna marathon runners had some stiff competition last weekend with Tesfaye Girmafrom Ethiopia finishing the race with a record time of 2:15:40. Most of us can only dream of running a marathon in that time or opt for rocket boosters on our shoes to do so.   When running in these races it is very important to have the right type of shoe.  When buying athletic shoes, may people are more worried about getting a particular brand name, or a style that is “in” or looks “cool”, than they are about whether or not the shoe actually fits their foot and is comfortable.  The truth is that all of these can be accomplished simultaneously if the correct considerations and evaluations are taken prior to shoe shopping.  These considerations are especially important in an active person, or athlete searching for the best athletic shoes.  To many people, shoe styles and materials may look the same, but all shoes are not created equal.

The first thing that anyone shopping for shoes should consider is what size they need, in length and in width.  This can be accomplished with a Brannock foot measuring device,available at many shoe stores.   This device has different measurements for both males and females, and not only measures the overall length and width of the entire foot, but also measures the arch length, the length from the heel to the ball of the foot.  This is important because shoes are designed to flex at the ball of the foot, and properly positioning the ball of the foot in the shoe can prevent toe crowding, pressure, and the general uncomfortable nature of an ill-fitting shoe.

Feet should be measured at the end of the day, after they have endured all of the day’s stresses and impact acting on them.  A proper fitting shoe should leave around a quarter inch between your longest toe and the end of the shoe.  If one size feels too small and the next size up feels too large, either try a different brand of shoe or choose the larger size.  Shoes that are too small or constricting can cause injury to the toes such as calluses, contractures, bruising, loss of the toenail, bunions, and can predispose toenails to nail fungus, called onychomycosis.

The best way to ensure that you get an athletic shoe that fits properly and is the perfect fit for your foot is to make an appointment with a podiatrist.  Here at First Coast Foot and Ankle Clinic, Dr. Reddy can evaluate your foot type to help you pick the right shoe for your foot.  He can also dispense items that help with shoe fit and function such as orthotics that are worn in shoes. Regardless of whether you decide to make an appointment before purchasing your new shoes, or bring them with you after, we look forward to helping you find that perfect fit.

The Road to Super Bowl XLVII

superbowl-1Unfortunately for Jacksonville football fans, the Jaguars did not make the postseason this year, however everyone should still be excited to watch the upcoming super bowl.  Throughout the long 17 week NFL regular season, and the 4 weeks of playoffs thereafter, the player’s bodies are exposed to non-stop, repetitive, strenuous activity that can put strain on muscles, tendons, ligaments and bones, the foot being no exception.  One of the most common chronic injuries to the feet of NFL players and older athletes are big toe joint injuries.  Some can be career altering such as the case with Deion Sanders when he was forced to retire from a “turf toe”injury in 2000.

Turf toe results from hyperextension of the big toe joint as the heel is raised off the ground.  An external force is place on the big toe and soft tissues that support the big toe on top are torn or ruptured.  In sports, especially football,a player whose foot is planted on the ground with the heel in the air is subjected to a force on the back of the foot thereby hyperextending the first MTP joint. The injury usually happens when a football player’s cleat is engaged with the turf and another player lands on the back of the heel.

There are also other conditions of the big toe joint that result out of abnormal wear and tear. Hallux limitus is a condition in which there is a significantly decreased amount of motion in the joint of the great toe, whereas in hallux rigidus there is no motion available at the great toe.  The diagnosis of Hallux Limitus can be made based on physical exam and x-rays that can be done here at the First Coast Foot and Ankle Clinic.

Hallux limitus can usually be treated conservatively in the office.  The first line of treatment would be functional foot orthotics that are to be worn in shoes.  These orthotics can provide a stiff surface for the inside of the foot and limit the pain associated with the decreased motion at the great toe joint.  The shoes can also be stretched so that no pressure or rubbing occurs around the joint.  In some more severe cases, surgery may be the best option to completely alleviate pain, and realign the joint.

It does not take the amount of activity or training that an NFL player has to endure to develop big toe joint problems, and is also quite common in the normal population.  If you are experience pain in that area, or want to prevent future problems, make an appointment today.

“Knock Your Socks Off” For Optimum Health

072 Socks off-1It’s that time of year to knock your socks off and enjoy a little fun in the sun in Jacksonville, Jacksonville Beach and the Ponte Vedra Beach area!!!  That also makes it a good time for annual physical examinations (aka “annuals”) essential for maintaining a clean bill of health. Despite this, yearly foot exams by a qualified foot and ankle specialist are an important aspect of the “annual” that is often bypassed. But when a doctor’s trained eye isn’t nearby, it’s your very own inspection that could save your life.

The next time you clip your toenails or lace up some shoes, take a closer look at your feet. Via an initiative appropriately named “Knock Your Socks Off”, the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) and the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS) recommend routine self-exams to focus on the most common areas of the foot for melanoma (malignant skin cancer) to appear:

  1. The soles
  2. Between the toes
  3. Around or under toenails

Routine self-examinations of the feet are an easy way to find skin cancer early, when it’s easiest to cure. Need more motivation??

  • Nearly 50% of those who learn they have melanoma of the foot die within five years because the cancer has already spread to other parts of their body by the time it is diagnosed.
  • Approximately 65,000 people will learn they have melanoma this year.
  • It’s difficult to estimate how many of those cases will involve the foot, but more than 8,000 will die.
  • If detected in its earliest stages, 92% of melanoma patients are alive after five years.

Unlike many other types of cancer, melanoma strikes people of all age groups, even the young. Routine self-exams of the feet increase the likelihood of noticing suspicious moles, freckles or other spots. If a mole, freckle, or spot on your foot starts to change over the course of a month and becomes asymmetrical or changes its bordercolordiameter or elevationcontact Dr. Reddy immediately.

The First Coast Foot & Ankle Clinic provides professional, routine foot care services for patients with certain medical conditions that place them at high risk for developing foot problems and complications, such as:

– Poor circulation

– Peripheral neuropathy (loss of sensation)

– Bleeding disorders

– Diabetes

We encourage those individuals without the above medical conditions to schedule a routine podiatric wellness exam! Either it be yourself of someone you love let the First Coast Foot and Ankle Clinic keep your feet safe this summer and year round!

Proper Sock-wear with your Footwear

sock-holeBetween Easter and Passover, many of us were dressed to impress recently.  When putting together such an outfit, choosing the correct pair of socks to wear will ensure not only comfort, but also optimum foot protection. Socks are not just a piece of foot “armor” acting as an additional barrier to the outside world, they are an essential element of complete, healthy footwear.  When it’s decision time for socks, keep the following two major criteria in mind:

1. Climate: Weather indictates sock choice just as much as shoe choice

  • In cooler temperatures and wet weather, thicker and well-insulated socks are recommended.
  • In warm climate areas such as Jacksonville, lightweight socks with moisture-wicking technology are the better choice.

2. Activity:  Would the sock you wear to work be the one you wear to climb a mountain?

  • To avoid heat build-up during high-impact activities such as running or fitness walking, choose a thinner sock with moisture-wicking capabilities.
  • If shock absorption and cushioning is what you need, choose a sock made of thicker material such as micro-acrylic fabric or cotton.

While the idea of “technical socks” might sound a bit funny, there’s no denying the big improvement they can make over your basic tube socks during certain activities.  One can now find socks made specifically for: “heavy” work, “light” work, sitting, walking, jogging, running, hiking, mountaineering, biking, skiing, snowboarding, sailing, scuba diving (yep, scuba diving!), aerobics, weightlifting, and the list goes on and on.  What’s the difference between them?  It all comes down to these features…

Padding:  Look for padding on the heel and ball of the foot for cushioning and protection.  This extra padding can be a real foot-saver.

Arch reinforcements:  Some socks offer a tighter, reinforced weave in the arch to improve support. Without proper support, arches can develop arch pain or even plantar fasciitis. Keep in mind, though, that your shoe choice is the key factor for arch support.

Height:  In many cases, height is merely a personal preference. However, crew and quarter socks do offer abrasion protection from boot/shoe tops, so socks at least as tall as the tops are recommended.

Fit:  When you try on socks, pay attention to how they fit in the toe and the heel. Correct length is very important. If a sock       is too long, it will bunch up over your toes. If it’s too short, the sock will slide down into the shoe and feel tight. For heavily padded socks, try them on with shoes to ensure everything fits comfortably together.

And last, but not least… for the sake of your feet (and fashion), regularly inspect your socks and discard outgrown, misshapen, or “holey” socks!

If your feet are suffering from the effects of a poor sock choice or any other reason,contact the First Coast Foot & Ankle Clinic today and make an appointment to meet with Dr. Reddy

Tebow to the Jacksonville Jaguars: Stinky Situation for Jag Fans

069 Tim_Tebow_New_York_Jets_Press_Conference_Tebow_Wins_AgainTim Tebow, previously with the Denver Broncos, has been traded.  Too much of the dismay of many Tebow fans in Jacksonville FL, the UF graduate was not picked up by the Jacksonville Jaguars, but the New York Jets.  Although Tebow is very “excited” about this, fans in the North Florida area thinks the situation stinks!

What can really stink is after a long day of anticipation and perspiration, it’s time to unwind, kick off your shoes and put your feet up. If you’re like many people, it can be a bit of an eye-opener and nose-tingler the moment your shoes and socks hit the floor.

Sweaty feet (hyperhidrosis) and smelly feet (bromhidrosis) are two common and conditions of the foot. Some cases are caused by:

  • Systemic (“whole body”) conditions such as anemia (low blood count)
  • Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid)
  • Most cases have a “local to the foot” cause

The main issue feeding foot odor is sweat. Our feet are among the most perspiring parts of the body- able to produce more than a pint of sweat in a single day! Sweat alone doesn’t have a distinctive smell. The smell from sweating is caused by bacteria on our skin that eats the sweat and excretes waste, causing the stink! It’s perfectly normal to have bacteria on your skin but it doesn’t always produce a noticeable smell.

So do sweaty, smelly, feet happen to begin with?

  1. Wearing shoes or socks made of synthetic materials contributes to the production of excessive perspiration and the bacteria growth that causes this condition and odor
  2. Most footwear is made of synthetic materials- especially tennis shoes. Many synthetic materials don’t “breathe” very well and therefore,
  3. The sweat our feet excrete can’t easily escape into the air like the sweat our hands excrete — it all collects on our skin and in our socks.
  4. The bacteria thrive in this kind of environment by feeding on the excess sweat.
  5. When you take off your shoes the foul odor that hits you is all the bacteria excretion that’s collected on your feet and in your socks and shoes.

What’s a person with smelly and/or sweaty feet to do?!!

  1.  Decrease the amount of bacteria on your feet
  2.  Decrease the amount of sweat that collects on your feet and in your shoes

How to Reduce Bacteria:

  •  Wash your feet with anti-bacterial soap
  •  Wear clean socks everyday
  •  Give a pair of shoes 24 or more hours to air out before wearing again

How to Reduce Sweat:

  •  Wear well-ventilated shoes instead of very constrictive shoes, such as boots
  •  Always wear socks, preferably made of cotton or other absorbent materials
  •  Change socks multiple times per day, if possible
  •  Apply antiperspirant to your feet

If your foot odor or sweating is excessive and basic remedies are not helping, make an appointment to visit Dr. Reddy at the First Coast Foot & Ankle Clinic.

Gate River Run 2012

GRR-2012Come see us at our booth for the 2012 Gate River Run, Runners Expo at the Jacksonville Fairgrounds!  We’re next to the Donna Deegan Marathon and Black Creek Outfitters.

Hours of Expo: 

Thursday, March 10th           11:00 AM until 6:00 PM

Friday, March 11th                 11:00 AM until 8:00 PM

Saturday, March 12th             8:30 AM until 12:00 PM

“Like” us on our Facebook page and be entered to win a pair of custom orthotics valued at $450!

“Like” our Facebook page at the expo and get $3’s off BioFreeze, usually $15!

Also enter at our booth for a chance to win a iPod Nano!

The First Coast Foot and Ankle Clinic looks forward to seeing you there!  Come join the fun!

Fishy Feet

Tracy Roberts, 33, of Rockville, Md. has her toes nibbled on by a type of carp called garra rufa, or doctor fish, during a fish pedicure treatment at Yvonne Hair and Nails salon in Alexandria, Va. on Thursday July 17, 2008. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin) ORG XMIT: VAJM101

Tracy Roberts, 33, of Rockville, Md. has her toes nibbled on by a type of carp called garra rufa, or doctor fish, during a fish pedicure treatment at Yvonne Hair and Nails salon in Alexandria, Va. on Thursday July 17, 2008. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin) ORG XMIT: VAJM101

Do you have dry peeling skin or calluses on your feet?  If a few state there is a new and controversial treatment currently offered by pedicurists—not podiatrists. Just like any regular pedicure, your feet are place in a tank of water, but instead of a pumice stone or razor used on your rough spots, tiny “doctor fish” swim around sucking the dead skin off the bottom of your feet. The fish have no teeth, so the procedure is completely painless, but perhaps ticklish for some.  If you are feeling adventurous, this may be a therapy you are willing to try!

Your skin consists of two layers:

1. Outer epidermis

2. Inner dermis.

The epidermis grows from the inside out and at the outermost levels the skin cells are dead. These dead skill cells act as a barrier to the outside world and eventually will shed away. The fish take advantage of this normal function and eat away at the dead outer layer. This results in skin that is softer, smoother and more cosmetically pleasing.

So, whoohoo, softer feet!… But is it safe? Some state cosmetology boards, including Florida, require tools be sterilized between uses.  Since it’s impossible to sterilize fish, unless you want to add a snack after your pedicure, the fish are banned. For now you will need to leave Jacksonville, FL to receive such a treatment. However, if after receiving a pedicure at any local nail salon in the area, and your feet just don’t seem the same, the First Coast Foot and Ankle Clinic is here to help.