Items filtered by date: November 2022

Tuesday, 29 November 2022 00:00

Facts About Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease

Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, CMT,  is an inherited nerve condition that attacks muscles in the feet, legs, arms, and hands. The disease, which is named after the three doctors who first described it, is progressive and incurable. It is thought to be caused by a disorder in a particular gene that controls the peripheral nervous system. In short, the peripheral nerves have trouble sending the correct messages to the extremities. Symptoms often are noticed in the feet and legs first, causing weakness and balance problems. Often, sufferers may think they are clumsy or accident-prone. Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease also causes the ankles to become weakened. This further affects the gait, and falling is prevalent. A visit to a podiatrist for an examination and diagnosis is suggested, because there are some ways to treat the symptoms. People with CMT can benefit from custom shoes and leg braces, along with other walking aids to improve mobility and balance. In some cases, surgery can correct bone abnormalities. For more information, contact a podiatrist.  

Some foot conditions may require additional professional care. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists of Harlis Family Foot and Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Rare Foot Conditions

The majority of foot conditions are common and can be treated by a podiatrist.  Standard diagnostic procedures are generally used to identify specific conditions and treatment can be rendered. A podiatrist also treats rare foot conditions which can be difficult to diagnose and may need extra attention and care. 

There are many rare foot conditions that can affect children. Some of these can include:

  • Freiberg’s disease
  • Kohler’s disease
  • Maffucci syndrome

Freiberg’s disease - This can be seen as a deterioration and flattening of a metatarsal bone that exists in the ball of the foot. It typically affects pre-teen and teenage girls, but can affect anyone at any age. Symptoms that can accompany this can be swelling, stiffness, and the patient may limp. 

Kohler’s disease - This often targets the bone in the arch of the foot and affects younger boys. It can lead to an interruption of the blood supply which ultimately can lead to bone deterioration. The patient may limp or experience tenderness, swelling, and redness.

Maffucci syndrome - This affects the long bones in a child’s foot leading to the development of abnormal bone lesions. They are benign growths and typically develop in early childhood and the bones may be susceptible to breaking. 

A podiatrist can properly diagnose and treat all types of rare foot conditions. If your child is affected by any of these symptoms or conditions, please don’t hesitate to call our office so the correct treatment method can begin.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Port St. Lucie, FL . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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Tuesday, 22 November 2022 00:00

​​Stretch to Relieve Achilles Tendon Pain

The Achilles tendon is the strongest tendon in the body and connects the back of the heel to the calf muscle. It is partially responsible for lifting the heel when walking, running, and jumping. Injuring the Achilles tendon can make walking or exercising painful. Achilles tendonitis or an Achilles tendon rupture are the most common injuries involving this tendon. Such injuries can cause swelling, tenderness, and tightness in the area, particularly upon waking in the morning. One might limp after sustaining such an injury. These injuries may happen from overuse, forgetting to warm up before exercise, or wearing ill-fitting, non-supportive footwear. Resting and stretching are important for recovery. A daily runner’s stretch or a calf stretch targets the Achilles tendon and will help to promote healing. For this stretch, one puts their hands against a wall and lunges forward, with the leg with the sore Achilles tendon behind them. As much pressure as possible should be used for a nice stretch, making sure to avoid pain. This stretch should be held for 30 seconds and repeated three times. If you sustain an injury to your Achilles tendon, visit a podiatrist who can evaluate the injury and provide effective treatment, including recommendations for additional targeted stretching exercises.

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists of Harlis Family Foot and Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is the Achilles Tendon?

The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can create immense difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.

What Are the Symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?

There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common injuries are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon.

Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms

  • Inflammation
  • Dull to severe pain
  • Increased blood flow to the tendon
  • Thickening of the tendon

Rupture Symptoms

  • Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
  • Total immobility

Treatment and Prevention

Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation, which can include an MRI. Treatment involves rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries, such as:

  • Thorough stretching of the tendon before and after exercise
  • Strengthening exercises like calf raises, squats, leg curls, leg extensions, leg raises, lunges, and leg presses

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Port St. Lucie, FL . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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Tuesday, 15 November 2022 00:00

Proper Treatment of Broken Toes

The toes contain many of 26 bones in the foot. Fractures of these bones are common and must be treated properly. Traumatic fractures are caused by a direct impact, such as dropping something heavy on the toe. These fractures can cause the bones to be displaced, giving the bone a crooked or abnormal appearance. Stress fractures are tiny hairline cracks along the length of the bone, mostly the result of repetitive use. Runners often have stress fractures. Experts agree that both types of fractures need medical treatment so they heal properly. If ignored, or allowed to heal on its own, a toe fracture can limit mobility or make it difficult to find shoes that fit. Other consequences include an onset of arthritis, chronic pain, and deformity. Treatment of broken toes should be overseen by a podiatrist who can examine the toe and diagnose the severity of the injury. In many cases non-surgical treatment, such as buddy wrapping, is sufficient. But with certain types of fractures, surgery may be required. If you have broken or even severely bruised a toe, please consult a podiatrist as soon as possible.

A broken toe can be very painful and lead to complications if not properly fixed. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Harlis Family Foot and Ankle. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What to Know About a Broken Toe

Although most people try to avoid foot trauma such as banging, stubbing, or dropping heavy objects on their feet, the unfortunate fact is that it is a common occurrence. Given the fact that toes are positioned in front of the feet, they typically sustain the brunt of such trauma. When trauma occurs to a toe, the result can be a painful break (fracture).

Symptoms of a Broken Toe

  • Throbbing pain
  • Swelling
  • Bruising on the skin and toenail
  • The inability to move the toe
  • Toe appears crooked or disfigured
  • Tingling or numbness in the toe

Generally, it is best to stay off of the injured toe with the affected foot elevated.

Severe toe fractures may be treated with a splint, cast, and in some cases, minor surgery. Due to its position and the pressure it endures with daily activity, future complications can occur if the big toe is not properly treated.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Port St. Lucie, FL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Thursday, 10 November 2022 00:00

Let the Expert Treat Your Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails can be painful and can make wearing shoes or walking uncomfortable. Seek professional help if you believe you've developed an ingrown toenail and be treated safely. 

Tuesday, 08 November 2022 00:00

Pediatric Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a common reason for heel pain. This condition results from inflammation of the plantar fascia, the tendon connecting the heel to the toes. People of all ages can suffer from plantar fasciitis. It is developed over time and several factors can play into the cause of it. When children have this ailment, it is often associated with overuse. Repeated stress from being active in sports, being on their feet a lot, and not properly stretching before and after workouts might lead to plantar fasciitis. Anatomical deformities, like high arches or an inverted position of bones in the heel, can predispose active kids to develop this condition. It is generally associated with a painful inflammation of the heel’s growth plate, known as calcaneal apophysitis. Ill-fitting, poorly cushioned footwear that does not provide adequate arch support can be another reason a child might develop plantar fasciitis. Typical symptoms are heel pain, particularly upon arising, that improves with walking, and tenderness near the arch of the foot. Since untreated plantar fasciitis can lead to complications, such as heel spurs or a rupture of the plantar fascia, it is suggested that if your child complains of heel or foot pain, you consult with a podiatrist who can make a proper diagnosis and offer a treatment plan.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact one of our podiatrists  from Harlis Family Foot and Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, known as the plantar fascia, and causes mild to severe heel pain.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Non-supportive shoes
  • Overpronation
  • Repeated stretching and tearing of the plantar fascia

How Can It Be Treated?

  • Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices
  • Shockwave therapy – sound waves are sent to the affected area to facilitate healing and are usually used for chronic cases of plantar fasciitis
  • Surgery – usually only used as a last resort when all else fails. The plantar fascia can be surgically detached from the heel

While very treatable, plantar fasciitis is definitely not something that should be ignored. Especially in severe cases, speaking to your doctor right away is highly recommended to avoid complications and severe heel pain. Your podiatrist can work with you to provide the appropriate treatment options tailored to your condition.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Port St. Lucie, FL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Tuesday, 01 November 2022 00:00

Ways for Seniors to Ease Ankle Pain

One of the most common complaints among older adults is joint pain, usually the result of osteoarthritis or OA. This degenerative disease is caused by the gradual erosion of the weight-bearing joints, including the ankle. Many sufferers of osteoarthritis take medication to deal with the pain. But experts suggest several practical methods for reducing the effects of OA. First on the list is to maintain healthy body weight. Excessive body weight increases the load on the ankles, which must support that weight when you stand or walk. The second is stretching at the beginning of the day and before beginning any exercise. This helps to reduce muscle stiffness and improve joint flexibility. Stretching can also lower the risk of cramps, sprains, and strains. Low-impact exercise, such as swimming or walking, is also recommended. Finally, to take the weight off the ankles, experts suggest using a walking device. These aids also have the added benefit of improving balance, thereby avoiding falls. Please consult a podiatrist for more information on how to ease the effects of osteoarthritis in the ankles.

Ankle pain can have many different causes and the pain may potentially be serious. If you have ankle pain, consult with one of our podiatrists from Harlis Family Foot and Ankle. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Ankle pain is any condition that causes pain in the ankle. Due to the fact that the ankle consists of tendons, muscles, bones, and ligaments, ankle pain can come from a number of different conditions.


The most common causes of ankle pain include:

  • Types of arthritis (rheumatoid, osteoarthritis, and gout)
  • Ankle sprains
  • Broken ankles
  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Achilles tendon rupture
  • Stress fractures
  • Tarsal tunnel syndrome
  • Plantar fasciitis


Symptoms of ankle injury vary based upon the condition. Pain may include general pain and discomfort, swelling, aching, redness, bruising, burning or stabbing sensations, and/or loss of sensation.


Due to the wide variety of potential causes of ankle pain, podiatrists will utilize a number of different methods to properly diagnose ankle pain. This can include asking for personal and family medical histories and of any recent injuries. Further diagnosis may include sensation tests, a physical examination, and potentially x-rays or other imaging tests.


Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are rest, ice packs, keeping pressure off the foot, orthotics and braces, medication for inflammation and pain, and surgery.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Port St. Lucie, FL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.


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