A foot doctor is a medical professional who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of conditions that affect the feet. Foot and ankle doctors, also known as podiatrists, provide care for patients of all ages and treat a wide variety of conditions.
Foot doctors are trained to diagnose and treat problems with the bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments, blood vessels, nerves, and skin of the feet. They use a variety of diagnostic tools to assess each patient’s individual needs and develop an appropriate treatment plan. Treatment may include medication, custom orthotic devices, physical therapy, or surgery.
Here, we will discuss the different conditions a foot doctor can diagnose.
Common Foot Conditions
A foot doctor diagnoses and treats a variety of common foot conditions, including corns and calluses, bunions, and hammertoes.
- Corns and calluses are thickened areas of skin that form in response to repeated friction or pressure. Corns are small, round bumps that often have a hard center. Calluses are larger and flatter than corns, and they usually don’t have a hard center.
- Bunions occur when the big toe bends inward towards the second toe, causing a bump to form on the inside of the foot.
- Hammertoes develop when one or more of the smaller toes bend downward instead of pointing forward.
Arthritis of the foot is a common condition that can cause pain and disability. There are many different types of arthritis, but the most common type affecting the foot is osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative disease that slowly wears away at the cartilage in joints. The symptoms of arthritis of the foot can include pain, stiffness, swelling, and difficulty moving the affected joint. Treatment for arthritis of the foot typically includes medication, physical therapy, weight loss, if needed, and sometimes surgery.
Diabetic Foot Conditions
There are a number of different diabetic foot conditions that can occur, and they are often related to poor circulation and nerve damage. These conditions can include ankle arthropathy, ulcers, infections, Charcot foot, and peripheral vascular disease.
- Arthropathy of the ankle is a condition that results in pain and inflammation in the ankle joint. This can be caused by arthritis, injury, or other conditions that affect the joints.
- A foot ulcer is a sore that does not heal. Diabetic foot ulcers often develop on the bottom of the feet where they do not get much air, which makes them slow to heal.
- A Charcot foot is a serious complication of diabetes that occurs when nerves are damaged and blood flow is reduced in the foot. This can cause the foot to become swollen, deformed, and infected. If left untreated, a Charcot foot can lead to amputation.
- Peripheral vascular disease is a condition that develops when there is damage to the blood vessels supplying the extremities, resulting in poor circulation and a heightened risk of infection.
Common sports injuries affecting the foot are fractures, plantar fasciitis, and Achilles tendonitis.
- The most common types of foot fractures are stress fractures, which occur when there is pressure on the bones more than they can sustain. Stress fractures can be caused by overuse or repetitive motion, and they often occur in athletes who train hard on a regular basis. Other types of foot fractures include metatarsal fractures, which are broken bones in the middle part of the foot.
- Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot, from the heel to the toes.
- Achilles tendonitis is the inflammation of the large tendon that connects the calf muscle to the heel bone.
Best Foot Doctors in San Antonio, TX
The foot and ankle doctors at The Podiatry Group of South Texas can diagnose and treat a wide range of foot conditions, and offer non-surgical and surgical treatments, depending on what you need, to get you back to normal. We have 14 locations from which to serve you. To schedule an appointment with one of our physicians, call our podiatry office nearest you or use our convenient online appointment request form.