A bunion is a bony bump that forms on the joint at the base of your big toe. This condition occurs when your big toe pushes against your next toe, forcing the joint of your big toe to get bigger and stick out.

When should you see a podiatrist for your bunion pain? (Image: Wikimedia Commons)
When should you see a podiatrist for your bunion pain? (Image: Wikimedia Commons)

The underlying cause of bunions is a deformity of the joint at the base of the big toe known as the hallux valgus. In this deformity, the joint develops a prominent sideways angle, which pushes the bones of the big towards the smaller toes.

Smaller bunions, known as bunionettes, can also develop on the joint of your little toes.

As a bunion develops, swelling, redness and pain is typically felt at the base of the big toe and in the ball of the foot. Eventually, the area becomes shiny and warm to the touch.

All bunions are permanent unless surgically corrected, but there are some measures you can take to be more comfortable or to slow a bunion’s progression.

What causes bunions?

For most people, bunions are a hereditary condition that typically develops in early adulthood and get worse as the foot spreads with aging.

In some cases, bunions have been associated with certain types of arthritis, particularly inflammatory types, such as rheumatoid arthritis. An occupation that puts extra stress on your feet or one that requires you to wear pointed shoes also can be a cause.

In people with leg length discrepancies, bunions usually form in the longer leg.

Tight-fitting shoes can also play a part in the creation of bunions. Shoes that have a sloping foot bed and a narrow toe box such as high heels cause the front of the foot to be pushed with force into the narrow toe box, causing the toes to become squeezed together.

For this reason, women are especially prone to developing bunions due to years of wearing tight, poorly fitting shoes.

Although they don’t always cause problems, possible complications of bunions include:

Continue reading

Circulator Boot Therapy is a revolutionary treatment option for both diabetics and non-diabetics that can prevent amputations of the lower extremities, even in advanced cases where surgery has already been scheduled.

Circulator Boot Therapy in action at Delray Beach Podiatry.
Circulator Boot Therapy in action at Delray Beach Podiatry.

As well as providing an immediate boost to arterial and venous circulation, the procedure can also slowly break down clots. It increases the breakdown of plaque within the arteries by the release of nitric oxide oxygen and nourishment increase. You will see swelling and pain subside with the first few sessions. As circulation is restored with each further session, the body can begin to heal itself.

At Delray Beach Podiatry, Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum, a podiatric physician and surgeon with over 30 years of experience, has used Circulator Boot Therapy to save a staggering 38 limbs from being amputated.

“It saves people’s lives,” said Dr. Goldbaum, who is the only doctor in South Florida with access to a Circular Boot. “When you have an amputation, within five years there is usually another event that transpires and people can pass away because of it.”

Circulation Boot Therapy is an excellent method for treating and correcting circulation problems such as diabetic ulcers and venous insufficiency.

“This is one of the few things we have that’s external and it does a terrific job,” said Dr. Goldbaum. “This actually saves people’s limbs from being taken off.”

Many amputations begin with a small injury to the foot, leg or toe, especially in the case of diabetics. Proper treatment, such as Circulator Boot Therapy, can prevent what may ultimately lead to infections and gangrene and end with an amputation and often a myriad of life long medical complications.

“Every time I have used Circulator Boot Therapy, it has increased blood flow,” said Dr. Goldbaum. “It’s all about blood flow. If you have good blood flow, then you have oxygen and nutrients that the body needs to heal.”

Continue reading

A foot bursitis is named after your bursa, which are fluid-filled cushions that protect your body’s joints. These cushions help you absorb shock, keep your joints moving smoothly, and prevent irritation from where your tendons and ligaments pass over your bones.

Although there is only a small number of bursae that occur naturally in the foot, the body creates more bursae in areas where pressure and friction of great. As we exercise, the ground surface and the shoes we wear play an important role in how much trauma our feet experience. In short, every step you take can cause a small amount of damage to a particular area in the foot which can increase the risk of bursitis.

Foot Bursitis Treatment at Delray Beach Podiatry [Image via MorgueFile.com]
Foot Bursitis Treatment at Delray Beach Podiatry [Image via MorgueFile.com]
Unfortunately, your bursa can become inflamed as your ability to absorb shock decreases, which causes the area around your joints to become irritated. In severe cases, the bursa will appear as a bump and is usually red, appearing extremely tender and painful. This swelling can hamper your ability to move your toes, foot, or ankle as the range of motion in the joints is affected.

Causes

Common causes of foot bursitis include:

  • Aging
  • A sudden injury
  • Too much repetitive motion of your joints, such as from over-exercising
  • A sudden twisting or rapid joint movement
  • Overuse and repeated movements

Symptoms

Common symptoms associated with foot bursitis include:

  • Pain or ache in the middle part of the underside of your heel
  • An increasing pain or discomfort while participating in weight-bearing activities
  • Pain and swelling under the heel
  • Redness under the heel

Continue reading

Whether you are suffering varicose veins or edema, Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum of Delray Beach & Boynton Beach Podiatry has all of the right tools and treatments to improve both the cosmetic and internal health of your legs.

Varicose veins are the visible surface manifestations of an underlying problem with reverse venous flow, which is also termed venous insufficiency syndrome. Edema, meanwhile, is categorized as any sort of swelling of the lower extremities caused by injury or inflammation.

Varicose Veins & Spider Veins
Varicose Veins & Spider Veins

Varicose veins can be caused by weak or damaged valves in the veins. These veins have valves that act as one-way flaps to prevent blood from flowing backwards as it moves up your legs and back towards the heart. If theses valves become weak, blood can leak back into the veins and collect there. When backed-up blood makes the veins bigger, they can become varicose.

When identifying this condition, your veins can appear to be blue, red, or flesh-colored. They can also become raised above the surface of the skin and often resemble twisted, bulging cords.

Varicose veins are a very common condition in the United States and affect approximately 30-50 percent of adults. Women are four times more likely than men have varicose veins, and they become more prevalent with age.

If left untreated, varicose veins may lead to serious problems such as Thrombosis or venous stasis ulcers. Additionally, varicose veins may also indicate that you are at higher risk of other disorders of the circulatory system.

Continue reading

Continue reading to learn more about Morton's Neuroma treatment.
Continue reading to learn more about Morton’s Neuroma treatment.

Morton’s neuroma is inflammation, thickening, or enlargement of the nerve between the bones of the toes. It is sometimes referred to as an intermetatarsal neuroma due to its location in the ball of the foot between the metatarsal bones.

The condition occurs when the medial plantar nerve near the bones of those toes becomes compressed or irritated, possibly because the metatarsal bones press against the nerve in the narrow gap between the toes.

Dr. Ian S. Goldbaum, a podiatric physician and surgeon, is used to dealing with this problem as numerous patients visit his offices in Delray Beach and Boynton Beach seeking relief from pain caused by Morton’s neuroma.

“It’s one of the most common things we see in podiatry,” said Dr. Goldbaum.

Morton’s neuroma can cause a sharp, burning, or shooting pain that can get progressively worse over time. The pain becomes worse when a person walks or stands on the ball of the foot.

Other symptoms include:

– Tingling, burning, or numbness

– A feeling that something is inside the ball of the foot

– A feeling that there’s something in the shoe or a sock is bunched up

During his diagnosis, Dr. Goldbaum also notes that there is often an audible symptom to this condition.

“You can actually sometimes hear a clicking,” he said. “That’s called a ‘Morton’s click.’”

The exact cause of Morton’s neuroma is not known, but the choice of footwear is generally believed to be a factor. High heels and shoes with pointed toes place your feet in an unnatural position that can cause damage to the area. In fact, anything that causes compression or irritation of the nerves in your feet can lead to the development of a neuroma.

Continue reading