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Ask the Doctor

Below are frequently asked questions the doctors often answer for their patients.  Review the questions and if you don't see your question answered, you may submit it using the form below. Only questions you would want to be posted and answered on this forum should be submitted. If you have a problem you wish to discuss with the doctor, you should use our contact form and request a consultation.
Q: I understand you see a lot of athletes and a lot of runners. I am a runner and I put in 42-47 miles per week. I have no pain or problems do you have any thoughts on this?

A:  If you do not have any pain or problems, I am not sure why you are asking me a question. If you want my opinion on your mileage, I think you are too high. Whether you run for exercise or competition, I find your mileage too high. You should either talk to a running coach or come visit me and we will talk about ways to preserve your body parts. If you are competing, you need a healthy strategy to maximize your performance and to stay in the sport.
Q: Why does my heel hurt me every day and it is usually worse in the morning?

A: Heel pain is caused by any of a number of different sources. Plantar fasciitis is a condition that is very common in patients over 20 years of age. It is the most common cause of this type of heel pain and can usually be treated successfully with conservative treatment, although a surgical option does exist when necessary.
Q: My ankles pop and crack, they sound like a symphony, but since they don’t hurt, I don’t pay much attention. (everyone else does. though).  Do you think I need to be seen by a doctor?

A: If your ankles sound like a symphony when you walk and other people hear the music, my suggestion is that you start charging them a cover charge. As for the need for treatment, if you are pain free and you have no loss of balance, then you don’t need to be seen.
Q: What is the proper way to cut my toenails?

A: Generally speaking, you are safe cutting them straight across. However, certain nails tend to grow in toward the skin and cause pain and often times infection. If they have a tendency to grow into the skin, I’ll take a look at them.
Q: I have pain in the ball of my foot. Is it because of my shoes or is it something else?

A: Unfortunately, many stylish shoes do cause the ball of the foot to take up a heavier burden than necessary. But there are numerous conditions, including neuroma, capsulitis, metatarsalgia, plantar plate injury, arthritis, stress fracture and many more, that commonly cause “ball of the foot" pain. Determining the source of the pain is essential, so it can be properly treated.
Q: I have a lot of swelling in my feet and ankles and it gets worse at the end of the day. What is the problem and how do I fix it? 

A: Swelling can be a local or systemic problem, meaning it can come from your legs/feet or from higher up resulting from heart or kidney disease. I recommend you see your primary care physician to rule out systemic causes, then I can evaluate you and offer different treatment options.
Q: I've been diagnosed with platar fasciitis and some of my friends have told me that they've had it for years. Is there any way to get rid of it completely or is it something you have to live with forever?

A: In the overwhelming majority of cases our patients experience complete resolution of symptoms. There are however, cases where the symptoms are reduced 70-90% but the pateints are often aware of some discomfort in the heel or arch. That represents less than 7% of the cases we see. There is a surgical remedy and my professional feeling is, that if those patients were to undergo the surgical procedure, they would in fact have complete resolution. Understandably, many patients choose to live with the discomfort and to avoid surgery. 
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