The People's Perspective on Medicine

Show 1183: How to Manage Your Foot Problems

Call in your questions about foot problems and get helpful answers from Dr. Jane Andersen, board-certified podiatrist.
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How to Manage Your Foot Problems

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Do your feet hurt? Foot problems can interfere with both work and leisure time activities. You won’t want to walk the dog or go dancing, not to mention stand at a cash register or move about a clinic with foot pain. What can you do about it?

How Dangerous Could a Pedicure Be?

A pedicure is supposed to be a relaxing treat, with the reward of beautifully polished toenails. But if tools are not properly disinfected between customers, the pedicure could become a nightmare. If the previous person had nail fungus or a staph infection, you could catch it. Doctors have reported that some such infections are serious, possibly even lethal.

What Are the Most Common Foot Problems?

Blisters and bunions are extremely common. So are corns and calluses. What do these names mean, and how can you minimize the trouble? Problems with toes, like hammertoes or mallet toes, will also need attention. Plantar fasciitis is a very common cause of foot pain. What is the best treatment? And how do you prevent or treat ingrown toenails effectively?

What Do Your Feet Say About Your Health?

Experts in the UK are urging people to get an annual foot examination. This is especially important for people with diabetes. Even if you don’t have foot problems, though, the annual check-up could help identify other problems such as atrial fibrillation. This irregular heart rhythm can be detected when podiatrists check the pulse in the feet.

What About Gout?

Pain in the big toe may be the first sign of gout. How do podiatrists manage this joint inflammation?

Join the Conversation:

Our lines are open for your questions and comments this week. Call 888-472-3366 between 7 and 8 am EDT on Saturday, October 5, 2019. You can also reach us by email: radio@peoplespharmacy.com.

This Week’s Guest:

Dr. Jane Andersen, Board Certified, American Board of Foot and Ankle Surgery, is in practice at InStride Chapel Hill Foot and Ankle in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Dr. Andersen specializes in foot and ankle care for children, adults, athletes and geriatric patients, including surgery and conservative care.

Listen to the Podcast:

The podcast of this program will be available the Monday after the broadcast date. The show can be streamed online from this site and podcasts can be downloaded for free. CDs may be purchased at any time after broadcast for $9.99.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
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As usual, a great program. Magnesium citrate (sp?) was mentioned for toe or leg cramps, I think. I checked and found I’m taking Magnesium oxide (600 mg) almost every day (and have leg or foot cramps almost every night). Can you comment on why or how Mg citrate may work better than Mg oxide for cramps, and what doses work best for you?
BTW: We “lost” our regular PP radio station broadcast this year. Having PP podcasts is a life saver–maybe even literally. THANK you!

Magnesium citrate is less likely to cause loose bowels than magnesium oxide. It is slightly better absorbed. I don’t know that it will make that much difference in terms of eliminating your foot cramps, though.

Wow. 7-8 AM is 4-5 AM on the west coast. Why would you schedule this valuable program when half the country is asleep? I’m disappointed.

Hi Ellen. We are not in charge of when the show airs. That is up to the program director for your public radio station. But you can actually listen to the podcast any time you like.

Very knowledgeable on foot problems. Great program!!🏊🏼🚴🏻🏃🏻

Efficacy concerning reflexology?

Valuable information. Thanks.

My health insurance plan rules out payment for any foot-related health issues. That’s secondary to Medicare though.

I’ve self-diagnosed peroneal tendon issues (click/pop on the outside ‘little toe’ side of my foot/ankle sporadically when I rotate the foot lifting the big toe side).

Now what?

My husband has cellulitis in his left foot for the second time. Any idea what causes this?

What can be done for a hammer toe? Does surgery always work? I’m a Type 1 Diabetic and have been told it’s better
to live with the pain of the hammer toe than to have surgery as it’s not always successful and can actually worsen the problem. Is this true?

I am a faithful reader and find articles I have an interest in available only thru Podcast which I don’t use. How can this problem be corrected?

* Be nice, and don't over share. View comment policy^