Our Podiatrists In Miami & Hialeah Can Help With Your Skin Problems
COMPREHENSIVE CARE FOR FOOT SKIN DISORDERS
WARTS (PLANTAR WARTS)
Warts that occur on the bottom of your feet are called plantar warts. Often they occur on the areas of the foot that experience the most pressure, such as the ball of your foot or the heel. Because of the increased pressure to those areas from walking and physical activity, plantar warts in these areas often penetrate deep into the tissue and can be very painful. Warts are caused by a virus known as human papilloma virus, or HPV. They can be spread in moist environments such as public showers, locker rooms and swimming areas, but not everyone who comes in contact with a plantar wart will develop one.
Your podiatrist will diagnosis a plantar wart based on physical exam and description of symptoms. Often a plantar wart resembles a callus because of its tough, thick tissue. A plantar wart usually hurts during walking and standing, and there is pain when the sides of the wart are squeezed. These often appear on the surface of the wart. The dots are actually dried blood contained in the infected capillaries (tiny blood vessels).
To diagnose a plantar wart, we will examine the patient's foot and look for signs and symptoms of a wart. We offers numerous treatment modalities for the medical care of plantar warts. These include the typical treatment options of cutting-out the warts, freezing the warts, shaving the warts, using chemicals/acid on the warts, burning the warts and prescription medication to be applied by the patient. The usual choice of therapy is salicylic acid, which when applied daily eventually softens the skin layers of the wart so that it can be peeled off. This process may take several weeks or months.
Sometimes plantar warts go away on their own if left untreated. However, many warts can become increasingly larger and more painful and can begin to multiply into clusters of warts called mosaic warts. Walking and running will become difficult in these situations. Over time, some plantar warts can lead to a type of skin cancer.
Patients with diabetes are prone to the development of foot ulcers. After years of elevated blood sugar, both nerves and small blood vessels in the feet are damaged. Patients therefore do not feel small injuries occur, and damage to the circulation predisposes people to the development of wounds that may not heal. Diabetes also affects the immune system, leading to an increase chance of infection of foot ulcers.
Ulcers can form on the feet of people with diabetes, usually after an injury or in places that receive constant pressure, such as the ball of the foot. Further testing can be done to assess the circulation of the foot, and to determine the extent of the loss of sensation.
Because pain from infection or enlarging of an ulcer might not be felt, diabetic foot ulcers need to be closely monitored for progression or infection. Calluses on the foot or around the wound should also be monitored regularly and treated when necessary. In some cases, alterations can be made to footwear to promote healing. Topical medications can be applied to encourage wound healing.
Diabetic ulcers may become deep or infected. In cases of bone infection, long courses of intravenous antibiotics may be required. In some cases amputation of the affected toe may be necessary.
FOOT ODOR AND SWEATING
When sweat gets trapped inside shoes, the result can be foot odor, an embarrassing and uncomfortable condition. The foot has more sweat glands than any other part of the body, and that sweat isn't easily absorbed due to the wearing of socks and shoes. Bacteria can grow which causes an odor. The medical term for sweaty feet is hyperhidrosis, while the term for smelly feet is bromhidrosis.
The patient will usually recognize the problem at home and come into the office to seek treatment.
A topical ointment, cream, powder or spray can be applied daily to reduce to the growth of the odor-causing bacteria. Other procedures using an electric current or botulinum injection may be indicated to decrease the amount of sweating.
Sweaty, smelly feet may continue to make people feel uncomfortable. In certain situations these conditions may be a sign of a more complicated medical problem.
Bathing daily and drying feet completely will help to decrease foot odor. Applying a thin layer of baby powder and changing socks every day will also keep sweating down. Don't wear the same shoes two days in a row. Wear cotton socks and shoes that are breathable.
CORNS & CALLUSES
A callus, or tyloma, on the foot is caused from repeated pressure and friction, leading to the build up of thickened skin. The callus, which be may hard, dry or cracked, acts to protect the area underneath it. A corn is similar to a callus but is smaller and appears on toes rather than on the sole of the foot. Calluses and corns are caused by repeated pressure or friction on an area of skin.
The pressure causes the skin to die and form a hard, protective surface. A soft corn is formed in the same way, except that when sweat is trapped where the corn develops, the hard core softens. This typically occurs between toes. Calluses and corns are not caused by a virus and are not contagious.
Calluses and corns on the feet are often caused by pressure from footwear. Walking barefoot also causes calluses. Calluses and corns often form on bunions, hammer, claw, or mallet toes, or on the bumps caused by rheumatoid arthritis. Calluses and corns on the feet may also be caused by repeated pressure due to sports (such as a callus on the bottom of a runner's foot), an odd way of walking (abnormal gait), or a bone structure, such as flat feet or bone spurs (small, bony growths that form along joints).
A callus or corn is typically diagnosed upon examination.
Your podiatrist can recommend simple over-the-counter treatments such as pads or pumice to decrease the calluses or corn. In severe cases calluses may require regular shaving to keep them from becoming too large.
While treatment for calluses and corns is not always necessary, it may provide you with more comfort. Larger calluses can cause significant pain. In some patients, especially when they become cracked, calluses can lead to wounds that can lead to serious problems, especially in people with diabetes.