Orthopedic Associates' Blog

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Orthopedic Associates' Blog


6 Simple Ways to Prevent Foot Pain
6 Simple Ways to Prevent Foot Pain
By: Dr. Aaranson At the end of a long day of walking around a city while on vacation, you might have said that your “dogs are barking.” It’s common to feel foot pain if you’re not used to walking very far and then decide to go for a long hike. However, foot pain can be caused by a variety of things, and they don’t all involve walking an unusually great distance.  According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, about three-quarters of Americans will experience foot pain at some point. The pain can range from mild to severe, and it may last a only a short time or carry on for months or years. Fortunately, there are things you can do to help prevent foot pain. 1. Wear the right shoes Don’t go barefoot. It puts a strain on your feet and can lead to athlete’s foot and plantar warts from walking on unsanitary surfaces. If you shower in a locker room or use public pools or walk on beaches, bring a pair of flip flops to protect the skin of your feet. ...

All About Bone Spurs
All About Bone Spurs
By: Dr. Aaranson You might not have heard of an osteophyte, but you might know them by their common name—bone spurs. These small, bony projections form along edges of bones, often in the places where two bones meet, like the joints of your shoulders, hips, hands, knees and feet. It is also possible to have bone spurs form on your spine. Often, they go undetected because they present no symptoms, but that can greatly vary depending on their location and how they form. Let’s take a closer look at bone spurs and consider their cause, symptoms and treatments. Causes When one or more of your joints experiences prolonged pressure or rubbing for a prolonged period of time, a bone spur might form as your body attempts to repair itself. This stress can cause osteoarthritis, which is the most common cause of bone spurs. Osteoarthritis breaks down the cartilage at the end of your bones that provides cushioning, and bone spurs form in areas of inflammation or injury of the nearby cartilage or tendons. What causes this stress? Excess weight can damage joints, and ...

Diabetes and Foot Care
Diabetes and Foot Care
By: Dr. Aaranson Diabetes is commonly perceived as a single illness, but it is actually a group of metabolic disorders that can cause many problems. It is either caused by the pancreas not producing enough insulin (Type 1), or the body’s cells not responding properly to the insulin that is produced (Type 2). A third form, gestational diabetes, only occurs when a pregnant woman develops high blood sugar levels. The most common type of diabetes is Type 2, which accounts for about 90% of the 415 million cases worldwide. Many people find the variety and widespread nature of diabetes-related symptoms to be surprising. Everything from respiratory and urinary issues, as well as blurred vision and gastric distress are all symptoms of diabetes. One of the more common symptoms associated with diabetes is the presence of foot problems. Why the Issue? For people with diabetes, diabetic neuropathy, or nerve damage, can cause tenderness and interfere with the ability to feel pain and temperature—a dangerous combination. If left untreated and unchecked, these foot problems can result in ulcers or injuries that can become infected. If ...

Does Your Running Shoe Type Matter?
Does Your Running Shoe Type Matter?
By: Dr. Aaranson   An experienced runner knows a well-fit shoe is priceless, especially when you face the uphill section of a marathon. Improper fits can cause blisters, foot conditions, and a variety of other complications. Shoes is arguably one of the most debated topics among runners: what type of running shoe is best for runners? Support structure is important to consider: how much motion control does your shoe give you? If you’re naturally overpronated in your gait, a shoe ‘expert’ may have recommended a heavier type of shoe with more support. Unfortunately, research shows that the type of running shoe likely doesn’t matter. A recent study published by Aarhus University in Denmark followed the running progression of 927 adults who were novice runners for an entire year. (British Journal of Sports Medicine) The runners were men and women ranging from age 18 to 65. Researchers profiled each runner’s foot to determine their most natural pronation pattern. The runners were then divided into five categories: Neutral pronation ...

How to tell if you need custom shoe inserts or orthotics
How to tell if you need custom shoe inserts or orthotics
By: Dr. Aaranson  Our feet withstand an amazing amount of weight and pressure over the course of a lifetime. The reality is that our feet were never intended to wear shoes, but we adopted the use of shoes through innovation, technology, and comfort. Of course, wearing shoes provide all sorts of helpful benefits, as well as protection from sharp or hard objects that can damage our feet. Shoes can also bring their own potential health risks, namely from improper support for your feet as you walk. Spending significant amounts of time on your feet without the proper support can lead to any combination of foot, knee, hip, and back pain. Wearing shoe inserts or a custom set of orthotics is one of the best ways to alleviate shoe-related foot pain and prevent further damage. 3 tips for telling if you need orthotics How do you know if you need shoe inserts or orthotics? These three tips can you help determine if you need to invest in a new pair of shoe inserts or orthotics: Look at ...

How frostbite affects your extremities
How frostbite affects your extremities
By: Dr. Randal Aaranson The winter cold can have a devastating effect on your skin, especially sub-freezing wind chill. Frostbite is essentially the freezing of skin and tissue and can occur within a matter of minutes. Frostbite typically affects the skin and tissue of exposed areas, such as your nose, cheeks, ears, hands, and feet. One of the common misconceptions is that frostbite only affects exposed skin. Even covered extremities, such as hands and feet, can be at risk of developing frostbite because of the relative temperature under gloves and shoes. Can you get frostbite in St. Louis? You may wonder, “Doesn’t frostbite only occur in extremely cold places, like the Dakotas and Canada?” Unfortunately, the risk of frostbite can be present in any sub-freezing temperatures. St. Louis’ winter wind chill temperatures often register at below the freezing point. A 10- to 15-minute walk to the train station without the proper winter clothing can put anyone at risk for developing first-stage frostbite, a condition called frostnip. Symptoms of frostbite Since frostbite is the freezing of tissue, the initial symptoms are pain and tingling sensations ...

St. Louis Blues Injury Report - October 2016
St. Louis Blues Injury Report - October 2016
Fall is here and we say “See you later!” to that one NFL team now in Los Angeles. Instead of our hearts getting ice cold out of spite, we’re turning to the ice of the Scottrade Center as our St. Louis Blues dropped the puck for the 2016-2017 NHL season. Here is rundown of all the battered and bruised Blues on the trainer’s table to start the new season… #20 Alexander Steen, Left Wing Steen underwent surgery on his left shoulder in June. He chose to enter an aggressive rehabilitation regimen that prepared him to resume playing a month earlier than expected. Steen re-entered game action in the Blues’ Oct. 6th preseason game. #15 Robby Fabbri, Center The twenty-year-old Fabbri experienced an undisclosed upper-body injury in late September. He missed several preseason games while recovering. He started the regular season and is expected to contribute as a top-six forward for the Blues this year. #64 Nail Yakupov, Right Wing The Blues acquired Yakupov from the Edmonton Oilers right before the season began. He was listed with a lower-body injury on September 30th, but it’s ...

Hit the streets with these fall 2016 St. Louis fun runs, 5K runs, and 10K runs
Hit the streets with these fall 2016 St. Louis fun runs, 5K runs, and 10K runs
By: Dr. Aaranson   Labor Day Weekend is the kickstart of race season across the Lou. Donning your favorite pair of ‘go fasters’ and pinning on a race bib is as familiar to St. Louis as October baseball. Whether you’re a ‘Fun Run’ enthusiast or a more focused 5k or 10k warrior, there are plenty of races in all sorts of places to enjoy this fall. Here is a list of some of the more featured fun runs, mini-marathons, and half-marathons happening in St. Louis over the next few months. Saturday, September 24th @ 9:00 a.m. | St. Jude to End Childhood Cancer Walk/Run 5K (Downtown St. Louis) St. Jude’s work with battling childhood cancer is reason enough to lace up your shoes and donate to their research. Treatments invented at St. Jude have changed the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to more than 80 percent since opening in 1962. The St. Jude to End Childhood Cancer Walk/Run 5K starts at Ballpark Village on Saturday, September 24th at 9:00 a.m. Click this link to register for the St. Jude ...

3 steps to relieving Plantar Fasciitis Pain
3 steps to relieving Plantar Fasciitis Pain
By: Dr. R. Aaranson Plantar fasciitis comes in a wide range of pains: some patients find the pain simply annoying while others experience sharp, stabbing pain that makes even walking unbearable. The American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society classifies plantar fasciitis as inflammation of the “tough, fibrous band of tissue (fascia) connecting your heel bone to the base of your toes.” (AOFAS) One of the most telltale signs of plantar fasciitis is pain in the bottom of your foot in the first few steps out of bed in the morning. Plantar fasciitis can be caused by weight gain among more sedentary people, improper foot arch support in athletic shoes, muscle imbalance in the pelvis or hips, or chronically tight muscle groups around the foot region. If you suffer from plantar fasciitis, you should immediately reduce or stop athletic activity that places pressure on your foot’s fascia. It’s only when you eliminate the cause that your fascia can properly heal. There are three key steps to relieving plantar fasciitis pain once you’ve discontinued activity. Stretch your fascia to relieve plantar fasciitis One of the ...

5 essential nutrients for any athlete
5 essential nutrients for any athlete
By: Randal Aaranson The weather is heating up and St. Louis is ready to be active and moving into the summer. Whether you’re an avid runner or a cyclist ready to race along the river, you may not be getting the nutrients your body needs to support a healthy exercise routine. One general deficiency among athletes is an imbalanced caloric intake. With increased athletic activity compounded by humidity and extreme summer temperatures, your body will require more calories than you may be anticipating. There are also five essential nutrients every athlete must have in their diet and are often lacking: Calcium: Yes, the old advertisement is right: milk does do a body good! An American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation study shows that drinking a cup of skim milk every day reduces a runner’s chance of developing a stress fracture by 62 percent per cup consumed! (Daily Burn) If you’re lactose-intolerant, leafy greens, such as kale, lettuce, and spinach are known to be high in Vitamin C. ...