What’s with the MLS laser?

What’s with the MLS laser?

What’s with the MLS laser?

MLS Laser Therapy

MLS Laser

Here at New Mexico Foot & Ankle Institute we continuously deal with painful conditions.  We see arthritis, tendonitis, nerve pain, sprained ankles, broken bones and lots and lots of deformities that limit activity levels for various reasons, but the #1 reason is pain.  With the 100’s of different problems we see there are still only a limited number of solutions.

Personally, I struggle occasionally with a pinched nerve in my left foot.  Despite my good orthotics and great collection of good shoes sometimes it still bothers me.  It came down to getting a steroid injection or using the MLS Laser on it.  I chose the MLS laser and it worked great for me.  So why chose the MLS laser over a steroid injection?  For me, the answer was as simple as the shot hurts and the laser doesn’t.

Low level lasers have been around for many years and studied extensively and shown to be effective in increasing blood flow to an injured area which in turned helped the healing.  Our MLS laser is short for a class IV multiwave locked system laser.  Additonally, te new MLS laser that we are now using is a high energy laser and overcomes the limitations that the older lasers had of not being able to treat conditions that were deeper down from the skin.  High energy lasers like the MLS laser have been shown to have analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-edema effects.  There is a lot of science behind how this works which is well beyond the scope of this discussion today.

The take home message is that the laser can be used to treat almost all of the painful conditions I see in clinic.  Similarly, it opens another door for us to offer more treatment options to patients who are looking for immediate relief of their pain and for safe and pain free ways to achieve that goal.  The laser worked well for my inflamed nerve and we’ve seen tremendous results with the laser on postoperative patients, slow healing wounds, tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, sprained ankles and many other conditions.  In brief, we are always striving to enhance our services to our patients by offering the best available treatments on the market and this is just another way we do this.

Don’t live life in pain, we now have another fantastic option for returning you to enjoy a pain free active lifestyle.

Call us today for an appointment at 505.880.1000. We take care of your feet…so that they’ll take care of you!

Nathan Ivey, DPM

#topdoctors   #bestABQfootdoctors   #nmfai   #wesavesoles #footdoctors   #podiatrist

 

The Coronavirus & Podiatry

The Coronavirus & Podiatry

The Coronavirus & Podiatry

COVID 19

The Coronavirus & Podiatry

I would like to spend a few minutes clarifying how the Coronavirus, aka Covid19, is affecting the private podiatry practice in New Mexico. Healthcare has been deemed an essential service and has remained open but we have changed who we are seeing and in some cases how we are seeing them. People who have foot issues that can wait have been asked to stay home.

Many of our patients are high risk and skipping a visit could result in an infection or even an amputation. Our goal is to make sure we keep the pressure off the hospitals and to keep people from having to go to the ER or even worse needing to be admitted to the hospital. As we continue to flatten the curve and lessen the stress on the hospitals it becomes more essential that people who have been putting off care of their feet and ankles come in to be seen.

We now know that the healthcare system in New Mexico will not have an overwhelming surge as we initially thought. Our responsibility is to keep our patients safe. Furthermore, we see infections or possible infections in our clinic daily and have always followed protocols and procedures to make sure we don’t pass those germs from patient to patient. Additionally, we have many patients who are elderly or who have multiple medical problems that puts them at high risk for infections.

Each patient is treated as someone who may be carrying a potential cold or flu and we continue to follow strict safety protocols. We have increased this significantly by making sure our waiting room does not break any social distancing rules and our staff screen patients for potential infections. Our goal is a safe environment for anyone to come to our office to be seen so that everyone with foot and ankle issues can be treated safely.

For those times where we can adequately treat via telemedicine we offer that as well. We rely heavily upon physical exam so we will continue to need to see patients in person more than not. Even being stuck at home it can be miserable to have pain and limitations in activity. In order to keep ourselves and our immune systems healthy we need to exercise, even if it is to go for a short walk.

We will continue to provide these essential treatments to anyone in need and we know that fear of infection keeps many people from seeking necessary care. Our commitment is that we will provide that care in a safe and caring environment. Delay in treatment more times than not will result in worsening of the problem and in some cases make it much more difficult to treat or cure. If you have pain or problems with your feet and ankles please call and either make an appointment or be screened to determine if you need to come in. Let us help you get back to a healthy active lifestyle.

Don’t Live Life in Pain! Call us today for an appointment at 505.880.1000. We take care of your feet…so that they’ll take care of you!

Nathan Ivey, DPM

#westandopen #topdoctors #bestABQfootdoctors #nmfai #wesavesoles #footdoctors #podiatrist #coronavirus #covid19

Achilles Tendon Injuries

Achilles Tendon Injuries

Achilles Tendon Injuries

If you watch basketball you probably saw or heard about DeMarcus Cousins recent injury to his achilles tendon.  He was diagnosed after the game with an MRI confirming a complete rupture of his achilles tendon which means he will not be returning to play this season.  In my practice we see a lot of achilles injuries ranging from minor tendonitis problems to partial and complete tears.  The interesting thing about DeMarcus Cousins injury is that it was not an obvious traumatic injury.  He was just playing the game like usual, got in a small scuffle and then couldn’t walk on his leg anymore.  It is not unusual for me to see patients who are wondering how they have such a horrible problem with no good story of an injury to tell.  It would be great if we could all talk about how we injured our leg or foot after falling from the back of a car racing down the freeway or sprained our ankle while lifting a car off a fallen friend but unfortunately sometimes we are just going about our normal activities and suffer an injury that takes us out of our normal ability to get around.  Many people feel that since there wasn’t a good cause to the pain that they should just ignore it or hope that it goes away with a little home remedy.  Don’t let the injury get worse by ignoring it.  Most injuries will heal much faster with aggressive treatment.  If you are limping even a little bit you need to be seen and evaluated.  Despite the fact, that you didn’t fall off the roof, you may still have a serious injury that will do better with appropriate treatment by a podiatrist.  Unfortunately, sometimes as in the case of DeMarcus Cousins it may even require surgery to correct appropriately.  Fortunately though, almost all injuries get back to normal function and hopefully if all goes well we’ll see DeMarcus Cousins back on the court next season.

Don’t Live Life in Pain! Call us today for an appointment at 505.880.1000. We take care of your feet…so that they’ll take care of you!

Nathan Ivey, DPM

#topdoctors #bestABQfootdoctors #nmfai #wesavesoles

The Gravity of Gout

The Gravity of Gout

The Gravity of Gout

Growing up I loved the Indiana Jones movies.  They had suspense, adventure and interesting historical tidbits.  One scene became relevant to my profession as I was asked to give a presentation to my co-residents.  If you remember in “The Temple of Doom” there is a scene where a formal dinner was served with snake surprise, beetles and chilled monkey brains.  What do those 3 things have in common, other than being questionable food choices?  They would all cause gout flares in someone with gout.

Gout is an arthritic disease because it attacks joints, usually the big toe joint, but it can affect any joint.  Uric acid crystals begin to form in the joint which is caused by your body having too much uric acid.  You can either be an over producer of uric acid or under excreter, either way there is too much uric acid in your body.  You can recognize gout by a red, hot, swollen and painful joint, in more severe cases the crystals called tophi begin oozing out of the skin.  If left untreated gout will do damage to the joint and prevent motion and can cause constant pain.

The treatments will depend on whether you’re an overproducer or under excreter.  There are drugs to take that will help maintain a normal level of uric acid to prevent gout flare ups.  When you get a flare, Colchicine is often used to calm it down.  It is a good idea to come in to the office so tests can be done to prevent flares and evaluate the amount of damage already done to determine the best way to prevent further damage to the joint.

Don’t Live Life in Pain! Call us today for an appointment at 505.880.1000. We take care of your feet…so that they’ll take care of you!

Mark Tenny, DPM

#topdoctors #bestABQfootdoctors #nmfai #wesavesoles #fifteenyearsstrong

Foot Fractures Take Time to Heal

Foot Fractures Take Time to Heal

Foot Fractures Take Time to Heal

I saw an article this week http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/sportsdoc/Why-is-76er-Ben-Simmons-foot-fracture-taking-so-long-to-heal.html.  That reminded me of questions and sometimes complaints I get in the office every week.  The question is why does it take a fracture so long to heal?  First off, most of the time the question is asked about normal healing time.  Somehow folks think that fractures should heal overnight.  While that would be great, it would be described more appropriately as a “miracle.”  While I do believe in miracles, it doesn’t happen much in my clinic.  So what is normal?   I use my active, healthy son as a good example.  He was 13 years old when he broke a bone in his hand.  It was a simple fracture with good position and just needed to heal.  He was placed in a cast for 6 weeks.  So that is “normal.”  Some fractures are more complicated with poor position, larger gaps or space between the fragments or instability where it wants to keep moving around.  On top of those poor indicators you have to add on that most of us need to use these bones to put all of our weight on.  With some fractures like the one Ben Simmons has you add on the risks of poor blood flow to certain areas and you can have a fracture that may take 3 months or more to heal.  So I’ll just apologize now to all who may end up in my office with a fracture.  It’s going to take time to heal and you are going to have to slow down and in most cases use type of cast for at least a month.  Even those toe fractures that “you don’t need to worry about” still take months to heal and need protection.   So I’m sorry you broke your foot but I need to treat the fracture and tell you that you most likely will not be breaking the laws of nature this month and will have to just try and patiently wait for this fracture to heal.  We’ll get you through it by following the healing with x-rays and protecting it with a boot or cast or special fracture shoe and give you recommendations to get you back to normal activities just as fast as we can.  Don’t live life with a foot fracture.  Come see us right away and we’ll speed the process along just as fast as humanly possible.

Don’t Live Life in Pain! Call us today for an appointment at 505.880.1000. We take care of your feet…so that they’ll take care of you!

Nathan Ivey, DPM

Stress Fractures

Stress Fractures

Stress Fractures

I read an article recently about stress fractures in the foot and saw two stress fractures the same day in clinic.  The article described a few different locations that we see them. However, almost all the stress fractures we see here in clinic occur in the front part of the foot.  We see metatarsal stress fractures every week.

They are tiny fractures that occur with repetitive trauma to the foot through normal activities.  It seems like we see a lot of them in the new year as folks gear up to lose weight by increased exercise.  The fractures rarely show up on x-ray but they do a nice job of keeping us from being able to walk without pain.  Folks often delay treatment for weeks and even months. They think that nagging pain will just go away if they ignore it and exercise a little less.  Unfortunately they don’t go away and need more rest and less exercise and even less normal walking.

What to do About Stress Fractures

Most fractures will heal in a cam walker or “boot” that allows the bone to heal while allowing you to continue to get around without crutches.  The longer you delay treatment the harder it is to get them to heal. Some even require a hard cast and crutches if the delay in treatment is too long.  The good news is that they rarely require surgery and almost always disappear to never return.

We recommend good shoes and orthotics to prevent stress fractures and other injuries that can occur.  I always have a good list of recommended shoes and a number of good options for orthotics here in the office for people who are interested.  Don’t live life with a stress fracture.  Come in and see us today if you’ve got some nagging pain that just won’t get better after a few days of good rest.

Don’t Live Life in Pain! Call us today for an appointment at 505.880.1000. We take care of your feet…so that they’ll take care of you!

Nathan Ivey, DPM

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