It’s Fungal Disease Awareness Week: Common Infections of the Foot

No matter how clean you keep your feet, they are constantly in contact with microorganisms that can cause infection. Bacteria and fungus are the most common offenders. Because this is Fungal disease Awareness Week, Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists is sharing information regarding the most common foot infections.

Fungal Foot Infections: These are familiar to many of us who may have picked up a toenail or foot infection in a spa or locker room. The foot, particularly between the toes, provides the perfect environment for infection. All it takes for the infection to develop is for the foot to come in contact with a contaminated surface.

Athlete’s Foot: When itchiness, flaking, and a rash develops between the toes, it is most often related to a common condition known as athlete’s foot. The fungus thrives in moist, warm environments such as saunas and gyms and can flourish in sweaty shoes and socks. It is very contagious and can be easily spread through contaminated towels, clothing, or floors.

Toenail Fungus: This fungal infection typically slowly grows underneath the toenail. Its symptoms include a yellowish or white discoloration, and the flaking and thickening of the nail, which separates from the nail bed. It often accompanies athlete’s foot and is more common in people with a weakened immune system.

Bacterial Foot Infections: While somewhat less common than a fungal infection, a bacterial foot infection can sometimes become serious, and develop from a local infection to a systemic one. Most are established through abrasions or breaks in the skin, often as a result of a penetrating wound.

Foot Abscess: Bacterial foot infections sometimes consolidate into a pocket of pus known as an abscess. This is most often caused by a puncture wound or the infection of a hair follicle.

Cellulitis: This is a potentially serious skin condition in which a local bacterial infection spreads from the site of the initial wound. It typically starts as a small area of inflammation that quickly spreads to surrounding tissues.

If you’re dealing with one of these or any other foot issues, contact the office of Dr. Hubert Lee at CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists to schedule a consultation. Call our office today at (425) 455-0936 to book your visit or schedule an appointment online.

Is Your Child Experiencing Any of These Common Foot Conditions?

Similar to adults, children can suffer an assortment of problems with their feet and ankles. Many of these problems, such as flat feet, are hereditary, while problems such as heel pain are usually caused by an injury.  Today Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists is sharing information regarding the three most common childhood foot ailments.

Because your child’s tendons and bones grow so rapidly, many symptoms related to foot and ankle problems can go undetected. For this reason, it is important that parents are attentive to even the most subtle symptoms. Comprehensive, routine exams of your child’s feet by a podiatrist may reveal a condition or defect and help minimalize problems later in life.

The Most Common Childhood Foot Problems

Children can face a variety of foot issues, many of which disappear as the child’s feet develop. Following are some of the most common problems:

Plantar Warts: These are common particularly during warmer months when children are more likely to be barefoot. Developing on the bottom of the feet, they are caused by a virus, most often in public areas such as locker rooms or pools.  They can be quite uncomfortable because it feels like they are walking on a small pebble or stone; however, it is also treatable and highly avoidable.

Ankle Sprains: These are quite common with active children, especially those who take part in sports. Ankle sprains occur when the ligaments that support the ankle are torn or stretched. With proper treatment, mild sprains can be healed, but severe tearing may require more extensive care. As a rule, rest, ice, compress and elevate (RICE) the child’s ankle immediately.

Ingrown Toenails: These occur when one or both side areas of the toenail start to break through and grow into the soft skin of the toe, leading to infection and painful irritation. Common causes include poorly-fitting footwear, injuries to the toe or improper nail trimming. If identified promptly, a child’s ingrown toenail can be treated with home remedies, but if the pain continues or worsens, treatment by a podiatrist will be needed to remove the infection.

If you notice that your child is constantly rubbing their feet, tripping often, limping or constantly complaining of foot pain, call the office of Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists at (425) 455-0936 today to schedule a consultation. Early attention and treatment are important when identifying many issues.