When Should You See a Podiatrist - Part 2

  • Pain that lasts for over 24 hours. A major foot pain that lasts for over 24 hours is usually a sign of a serious medical condition. This is especially true for those who have recently had a surgical procedure performed on or near the feet. Among the many cause of this kind of lasting pain are Deep Vein Thrombosis, (DVT), Compartment Syndrome which is an increase in pressure in a part (or compartment) of a foot, infection or even a dressing that is too tight. Treating the pain is not the major issue. Finding out what is causing it is.
  • Foot pain when the legs are elevated. Pain in the feet when the legs are elevated; this could be a sign of decreased blood flow or Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD). This is a type of atherosclerosis which happens arteries become clogged with plaque that cause the blood flow to the limbs – often the legs and feet – to become restricted. If untreated PAD can lead to gangrene or strokes.
  • A suddenly developing deformity.Charcot arthropathy refers to a condition often found in diabetes patients. The symptoms include pain, redness and a hot swollen feeling in the foot. This condition can cause the bones to break or slip out of place. If not diagnosed in time and treatment delivered promptly, the bones may heal in the wrong position, causing the deformity.
  • A mole that changes shape. A mole on the foot that has an odd shape or that keeps changing its shape or size, bleeds often or keeps changing it color should be shown to a doctor immediately. Any of these symptoms could be there early sings of melanoma, a dangerous form of skin cancer. The mole should be shown to a foot doctor who will then refer you to a dermatologist of other specialist as required.
  • One flat foot. If the arch of one foot becomes less curved that the other and appears to be like a flat foot, it could be a sign of tendon damage or even a ruptured tendon. Besides the needs to treat the tendon itself, another issue is that of the effect that a damaged tendon can have on the bones of the foot. A tendon that is not functioning as it could cause the bones to get out of alignment. This in turn can lead to the development of arthritis in the joints. The earlier such conditions are treated, the lesser the chances of other related problems developing.
  • A lump in the foot.A lump or bump on the foot that is painful and continues to grow should be shown to a podiatrist as the earliest. It could be a cyst that will need to be removed. It could also be something more serious like tumor that will need to be removed. Tumors of the feet are rare but the do occur.
Because of the load they carry and the stress and strain that is placed on them, the feet are subject to considerable wear and tear over a lifetime. Add to this the possibilities of injury, exercise related problems and conditions in other parts of the body that affect the foot. If any of the conditions described above occur or there is any other condition of the foot that causes concern, go to a foot specialist immediately. Early treatment is the key to preventing a small problem from becoming a big one


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