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When Is The Time To Consider Foot Surgery?

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The prospect of meeting with a foot surgeon to discuss possible operations to correct problems can sound scary. However, untreated foot issues can lead to anything from chronic pain to the possible loss of toes or feet. Responding quickly when there are signs of problems is important. Contact a podiatrist if you've noticed any of these five symptoms.

Tingling or Numbness

If there's frequent tingling or numbness in your foot, something causes it. Even if there's a reasonable explanation, such as working long days on your feet at a job, your body is still trying to tell you something. For example, there might be a bony build-up in the foot that's pressing on a cluster of nerves. You also might have a blood clot that's cutting off circulation and causing numbness. A disorder like diabetes could also affect the foot.

Unstable Walk

Your walk can become unstable if you have foot problems. Even a small deformity in your foot can lead you to favor one leg over the other when you walk. Over the years, this can lead to issues with your gait. A foot surgeon may be able to correct the base problem, and that often makes a person's overall gait more stable.

Limited Capacity for Activities

Sometimes a person's foot is fine as long as they limit their activities. However, this can adversely affect their lifestyle, especially if they used to exercise a lot or participate in athletics. If your foot can no longer sustain your preferred activities, then it might be time to consult a podiatrist to see if surgery could fix the issue.

Repeated Infections

Many problems can trigger infections in the feet. A bone deformity could encourage friction, and that in turn will foster abscesses and infections. Similarly, blood flow restrictions in the foot or leg could also lead to problems. If a doctor has had to drain foot abscesses or prescribe antibiotics more than once, then you may want to explore potential surgical solutions. This is particularly true if the infections lead to wounds that refuse to heal.

Arthritis or Other Joint Issues

Inflammation from arthritis can cause escalating problems in the foot. Similar forms of joint damage from injuries or other conditions also can trigger inflammation. Surgery isn't the answer in every case, but a podiatrist should examine you. They can check the condition of your joints and determine if a surgical intervention would be best.