A Step Ahead - Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists Blog

Posts for tag: Podiatrist in Glendale Arizona

The holiday season is done, and you have probably forgotten about your feet. Maybe you wore heels to different holiday parties or wore shoes with little to no support for shopping and walking around.   Now that it is 2019, most of us have made a resolution to exercise more. The increase for demand on our feet should come with an increase in awareness on how to keep them healthy. Here are a few tips to keep feet happy and healthy this 2019 year.

Ease into new exercise plans: If you decide to increase your activity this year, ease into it.  Too much too soon will have an impact on not only the body, but the feet as well. The last thing you want to do is start 2019 out with an overuse injury.

Find proper footwear: Whether the activity is basketball, walking, or trail running make sure you find the correct footwear that will provide the correct support and comfort for the activity.  Too often, injuries could have been prevented by altering footwear. Think about arch support, size and the insole when considering what shoes are appropriate for the activity.

Take care of your feet: It is vital to take care of your feet. Daily activities can even be unbearable when your feet are uncomfortable. Simple tasks such as proper nail care and moisturizer can prevent various issues including ingrown toenails or dry cracking calluses.  Other options could be stretching and massaging your feet especially with an increase in demand with a New Year resolution.

Listen to your feet: After a busy holiday season or the addition of an exercise plan make sure to listen to your feet.  If a pain starts and is not relieved with rest, do not push though and cause the injury to become more severe.

The holiday season along with New Year Resolutions is a very exciting time that can also be strenous on your feet.  If you or someone you know has any foot issues, please consider making an appointment with Dr. Jay C. Larson at Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists


April is the month to remind ourselves of the importance of your feet and how you can begin taking proper care of them. It is an uncommon habit for people to spend much time thinking about their feet, especially if they do not hurt, and often take them for granted. However, your feet are important structures, and more complex than they may appear. Think about how many steps you take each week, whether its basic walking or playing with your kids, your feet are constantly working behind the scenes to help you enjoy work and activities. With 26 bones, a combination of over 100 ligaments and muscles, you can start to imagine how important they are for walking and your health. Foot problems can start off small, but slowly progress toward other parts of the body, and eventually affect your overall health.


The good news is there are many routine habits you can do to help prevent injury to your feet and allow you to continue engaging in the activities you enjoy. Here is a list of some recommendations you can do to help maintain proper foot care:

1. Get into a habit of routinely inspecting your feet; this can be when you shower and take your shoes on and off. Ideas on what to look for: cuts, callused toes, redness on the skin, blisters, their shape (does it look noticeably different than the others), check the color of your toes (are they pink? blue?), look for moles you did not notice before, check the flexibility of your foot and toes, and if there is any pain in your foot. Skin cracks, peeling or dry skin buildup.


2. Perform daily stretches on your legs, ankles, and feet to reduce the strain on your muscles.


3. Make sure you are wearing proper sized shoes; ill-fitted shoes can cause development of foot conditions and affect your foot function over time. These include: Calluses, corns, blisters, bunions, plantar fasciitis, hammertoes, stress fractures and many other foot ailments.


4. Be sure to replace your shoes at least 1 to 2 times per year or when the inside of your shoes begins to wear down; talk to your podiatrist about shoe recommendations for your foot type.


5. Wash and dry your feet whenever you shower or when you participate in activities causing excessive foot sweating; this will help you avoid getting a fungal toe or foot infection.


6. Try minimizing how often you walk barefoot, especially outdoors, since your feet are more likely to get unnoticed cuts or develop an infection (fungal, bacterial). If you are have Diabetes, you should never go barefoot.


7. During the warmer days, if you wear flip-flops or sandals, wear sunscreen to decrease the chances of getting a sunburn, and minimizing the risk of skin cancers.


This month is about celebrating and taking special note of the care of your feet. We only get one set of feet and it is important to take proper care of them. If you notice any sudden changes in your foot health, experience any pain, or suffer an injury to your foot, please do not hesitate to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jay C. Larson at Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists in Glendale, Arizona.

By Gary N. Friedlander DPM, FACFAS and Jay C. Larson DPM
April 29, 2016
Category: Uncategorized

Ready. Set. Go. In Arizona, there are always trail runs, 5K’s and special awareness race/walks that happen every month of the year. Typically, these events require the majority of us to pick up an exercise routine and prepare for the events. Having shoes that fit and support your feet should be a crucial part of your training program.

Finding the right shoes for your feet can be really difficult. When you walk into a shoe store it can be overwhelming with all the options available to you. Even if focused on one brand, there are many styles within that brand complicating the decision. Below are a few tips to help guide you while trying to find the correct shoe.

Determine the type of activity – Most importantly you want to get the right shoe for the right job, using a walking shoe for running or a training shoe for hiking may not be your best option. Shoes these days are designed with specific activities in mind and staying within those guidelines will help you find the best shoe for the job.

Ask – If you find yourself in a podiatrist office because of an injury, make sure to ask your podiatrist what shoes he or she recommends. It is a simple question that can go a long way in your recovery and recurrence of injuries. Some individuals need a pronation control shoe, opposed to others that can benefit from a neutral shoe. Additionally, your podiatrist can usually recommend a store that he or she trusts in providing you with excellent professional help in finding the correct shoe for your foot type.

Size it up – This may seem elementary; however, it is amazing how many people wear shoes too small or too large for their feet. Make sure to have at least a half of thumbnail of space in your new shoes. This allows enough room to let your foot function without the shoe getting in the way. If you have orthotics or just received them from your podiatrist, make sure to bring them with you. Orthotics will take up more room then your standard insole so to ensure a proper fit try on your new shoes with your orthotic in place.

After all, your shoes will be supporting you for a few hundred miles. It is important to take your time and get the proper shoe for your foot type. If you notice any changes in your foot health or think you may benefit from orthotics, please consider making an appointment with Dr. Jay C. Larson at Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists in Glendale, Arizona.

Many of us have watched the 1999 James Bond film “The World Is Not Enough” starring the memorable villain Victor Zokas also known as Renard.  In the movie, Renard was unable to feel any sensations including pain, giving him almost superhuman abilities to endure more than what was thought physically possible.  After watching we have often reasoned, “If only I was like Renard then I wouldn’t have to feel pain!”  On the surface this is a tantalizing thought, but upon further contemplation it’s not all that it’s cracked up to be!

In fact, it is the sensation of pain that provides us with one of our greatest defenses.  The loss of this sensation, among other symptoms, is termed neuropathy, and is the result of damaged nerves. Most notably, neuropathy has been associated with diabetes and is the underlying source of many of the complications seen in diabetic patients.  According to the American Diabetes Association, nearly half of all diabetics have a form neuropathy.  This diabetic neuropathy is often characterized by symptoms of burning, aching, tingling, or numbness.  Often nerve damage progresses in severity, leading to loss of sensation to the feet and ankles.

Losing this protective sensation causes many diabetic patients to develop chronic wounds or ulcers.  In many cases, these ulcers arise from unknown trauma or a foreign object in the shoe.  Because of the lack of sensation, the patient cannot feel the object, and therefore fails to remove it; thus leading to an erosive ulcer.  If this continues, the ulcer can become infected and if the infection reaches bone, can possibly warrant an amputation.  The question then becomes how can diabetic patients prevent or stop the progression of diabetic neuropathy?

The management of diabetic neuropathy can be accomplished in the following ways:

  • Optimal Blood Glucose control is the primary approach

  • Lifestyle Modifications (diet, exercise)

  • Management of cardiovascular risk factors

  • Medications

If you currently suffer from diabetic neuropathy, in addition to the list above, it is important that you regularly examine your feet for any wounds, and that you consistently check your shoes for any foreign objects.  If you have an ulcer or suffer from nerve damage, please consider making an appointment with Dr. Jay C. Larson at Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists in Glendale, Arizona. 

Winter is the prime time to be a resident in the Phoenix area. With the comfortable temperatures and many activities, it’s no wonder we get so many visitors in the winter! One attraction you may find yourself visiting is the Desert Botanical Gardens to see the native desert plants and many walking trails. However, if you suffer from posterior tibial tendon dysfunction (PTTD), enjoying the gardens may be difficult.

PTTD is a condition that affects the posterior tibial tendon, which is a major supporting muscle and tendon of the foot, especially while walking. If you suffer from this condition, you may have noticed that your once normal arched foot now appears flat. This condition typically occurs when the tendon becomes torn or inflamed.  PTTD can be caused by an abrupt injury or can be caused by overuse.

Symptoms of PTTD include:

  • Swelling
  • Pain that is worse with activity
  • Flat arch
  • Inward rolling of the ankle

Risk Factors:

  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Hypertension

Treatment is typically non-surgical but if the condition is progressed enough, surgery may be needed. Non-surgical treatments include rest, ice, braces/orthotics, physical therapy, NSAIDS, steroid injections, immobilization, and possibly shoe modifications.  Surgical treatment option can address both the bones and soft tissue structures of the foot. If surgery is indicated your Podiatrist will perform at thorough workup and evaluation to ensure the proper surgical correction.

Phoenix offers a multitude of winter activities, including visiting the Desert Botanical Gardens. PTTD makes enjoying these activities difficult. If you or someone you know has any foot issues, please consider making an appointment  with Dr. Jay C. Larson at Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists in Glendale, Arizona.

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