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

 

Happy “Dogs” while Walking & Hiking

Happy “Dogs” while Walking & Hiking

Happy “Dogs” while Walking & Hiking

Walking and Hiking

Dr. Janet Simon

Dr. Janet Simon

With limited activities due to COVID emergency, many New Mexicans are hiking and exploring outdoor trails. We are obviously blessed with these opportunities to get out and enjoy the natural world. The term “dogs” has dual meaning here – 1) feet, often referred to as dogs in the early 20th century and 2) canines. While walking and hiking both “dogs” need to be prepared and protected from injuries and overuse.

As a podiatrist, I am often asked for recommendations on sock and footwear choices. Having properly fitting socks is important along with shoe/boot fit. Sock fit is often overlooked and from what I’ve recently observed on the trails sometime absent for a few newcomers to hiking. A synthetic blended sock is recommended over 100% cotton and I advise individuals that the thickness is a personal choice. Obviously, when purchasing new shoes/boots try them on with the thickness of sock you’re planning on using.

Shoe/boot choices are dependent on the type of walking/hiking. My observations on the Sandia trails are that experienced participants have “proper” shoes and the less experienced have footwear that I know will be bringing them soon into my office for foot problems. I’m not totally opposed to walking sandals on paved trails but do not feel they’re appropriate on rocky, cactus laden trails. Using a boot that provides increased ankle support will be beneficial especially if you’ve had history of ankle sprains, posterior tibialis tendonitis or overpronation.

Not only are humans out on the trails but their dogs too and it’s clear that many dog owners have not given much thought about their dogs paws or other wellness concerns on the trails. Recently, I’ve witnessed many small dogs being carried on trails that clearly were not appropriate for them to be on. Furthermore, their paws need to be conditioned for longer distances, as well as, their joints and muscles too.

Dogs do feel pain and unlike humans cannot complain vocally. Similarly, to what was stated about matching up the type of footwear to the difficulty or type of trail, matching up your dog is wise too along with providing booties or applying Musher’s wax to their paws. Dog’s “dogs” need protection too.

Additional advice that veterinarians share is making sure your dog is current on their vaccinations and well hydrated and nourished. Our Sandia trails require dogs to be leashed and I will opine that this is not only safety for others but also for your dog to stay on the trail and hopefully away from cacti.

Summing up – being safe during your walks/hikes is the message for both you and your “dogs”. My office is open and if concerns arise about human feet/ankles please call. We can see you in person or schedule a virtual visit. If your dog is having paw or other problems, please contact a veterinarian.

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!

Janet Simon, DPM

 

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

 

Boots to make the hunt

Boots to make the hunt

Boots to make the hunt

It’s fall again and heading into winter and I see lots of folks worried about the upcoming hunt.  Foot problems that we’ve been ignoring for months sometimes become a little more important before the hunt.   We realize we have to be able to hike up and down the side of a mountain to get that elusive elk or deer or bear or whatever they may have gotten lucky enough to get tags for this year and a painful foot or ankle is going to make that impossible.  Hunting is a big deal here in New Mexico and there are a lot of things to consider to make sure we avoid injuries during the hunt.  As a fan of hunting myself I have done a lot of research into hunting boots.  Luckily as a general rule hunting boots almost always fit my criteria for stability and support.  With terrain being so varied while hunting it becomes essential that what we wear on our feet give us support and stability.  Wearing a high top 6 inch or 9 inch boot can protect us not only from the burrs and goat heads getting into our socks but also protect our ankles from the uneven ground that is constantly moving around below us.  It is very easy to sprain an ankle and the high top prevents that in most cases. The shank on the boot helps to keep that foot from slipping and give us more strength when we push ourselves forward. The foot should act almost like a rigid lever to push our bodies forward into that next step.  If we have a rigid sole that puts less effort into our feet and more into our boots.  That rigid boot is also essential to protect our feet in case we actually harvest an animal and have to hike that heavy load out to our trucks.  Having a good boot goes a long way towards keeping us upright and mobile and prevents injuries and falls.  The discussion on boots is never complete with a recommendation for a good orthotic.  Whether it be a good over the counter device or an even better custom orthotic you can never go wrong with an orthotic in that boot.  The last thing you want to do is come home from the hunt to make an appointment with the doctor to spend the next month limping around on a raging case of plantar fasciitis from all that hiking you did.  We are always happy to make recommendations for boots and orthotics and you can even bring them in and I’ll look at them for you and give you an approval as needed.  Boots can be an expensive part of the hunt but one which cannot be overlooked without some serious consequences.  Get some good boots, it’s worth it!

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 #podiatrist

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

Wrong size shoes?

Wrong size shoes?

Wrong size shoes?

Are you wearing the wrong size shoes? A recent study done in the UK on 2000 patients shows 1/3 of men and almost ½ of women have shoes that don’t fit right.   Some people might ask how that is possible but it doesn’t really surprise those of us who work with feet every day.  What people don’t realize is that their feet change constantly over time and the size you wore in high school is not the size you should be wearing now.  To compound this problem we have less and less stores fitting people and more and more folks are just plain buying shoes online and not trying them on at all.  I often joke with people about the fact that most shoes are now being made out of the U.S. and the standards are not very high and shoes just don’t fit like they used to.  We also see routinely that a size 10 in a Nike doesn’t even fit close to the same as a size 10 in a New Balance shoe.  In the clinic each day I see people with real problems that can cause real pain.   I see at least 1-2 people a day who simply need to invest in a properly fitted and properly stable shoe.  They don’t need surgery, and they don’t need injections, casts, or prescription medications.  Just a new pair of shoes.  Find a good store where they still carry a measuring device for your foot or ask your podiatrist for your size and go get some good shoes.  What constitutes a good shoe?  That’s a blog for another day.  How often do you go to a doctor and he simply tells you to go shopping.  Probably not often but it’s a great way to prevent foot pain, so start shopping.

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

Foot Pain and the Brain

Foot Pain and the Brain

Foot Pain and the Brain

Pains in the feet can present themselves in many different ways such as sharp, dull, shooting, numb, tingling, burning, aching, stabbing and throbbing. We use a lot of words to describe our pains because they can be different and just like we have lots of different pains, we can’t just treat all of them with the same single medication. This would be like the above 500 year old image of Hercules fighting the Hydra, a mythical beast with multiple heads that regenerate if you cut them off. Like the Hydra, if you fight pain with just one thing, you are usually going to lose.

As a caring doctor, I really wish I had a single magic pill or cream that could take all the pains away. Sadly, nothing like that exists. But with a combination approach, we can get very close to it. We fight pain from multiple levels. Our brain is the final spot where pain is sent from your toes through your legs, back and neck. We at the New Mexico Foot and Ankle Institute are keenly aware of this complicated process and we understand that there are a lot of areas where pain can be attacked and stopped. With a balanced approach with patient-comes-first care, we can provide individualized therapies and fight the “painful Hydras” in our feet.

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!

Justin Ward, DPM

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