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August 17, 2018
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After wearing flip-flops all summer, students head back to school with painful feet

Reston, Manassas, and Leesburg Virginia–8/17/2018 The sounds of back to school season include the ringing of school bells and cash registers, the slamming of locker doors, the noisy ruckus of school hallways and cafeterias, and the moans and groans of students over tests, homework, relationships, and increasingly, their aching feet.

Flip-flops are the summer footwear of choice for many students. But while these sandals are inexpensive and stylish, they don’t cushion or support the foot, leading to problems. After wearing flip-flops all summer, some students will head back to school this fall with foot pain and even injuries. Steven Gordon, DPM, FACFAS, a foot and ankle surgeon with offices in Reston, Manassas, and Leesburg reminds parents and students that foot pain isn’t normal and can be reduced or eliminated.

“People may not realize that even into your mid-teens, there’s new bone growing in your heel,” says Gordon. “Flip-flops don’t cushion the heel, so repetitive stress from walking can inflame that heel bone growth area and cause pain and tenderness.”

Heel pain and arch pain rank among the most common complaints among students who wear flip-flops. Other flip-flop feet problems students can take back to school include inflammation of the Achilles tendon, painful pinched nerves, sprained ankles, broken or sprained toes, cuts and scrapes, plantar warts, Athlete’s foot, and callus build-up on the heels and toes.

Foot and ankle surgeons can usually reduce or eliminate students’ foot pain with simple treatment methods including stretching exercises, ice massage, anti-inflammatory medications, and custom or over-the-counter shoe inserts.

Back to school season will always be painful for some students, but it doesn’t need to involve foot pain. Contact Dr. Gordon’s office at 703-437-6333 to have your student’s painful foot evaluated, and visit FootHealthFacts.org for more information on foot and ankle conditions.

By RESTON FOOT & ANKLE CENTER
August 15, 2018
Category: Foot Care

Many foot and ankle injuries can be managed and treated successfully with conservative options like rest and physical therapy, dependingfoot and ankle surgery on the nature and severity of the injury. However, when conservative treatments are insufficient, surgery may be necessary to relieve symptoms, restore function and mobility, or prevent permanent damage. The podiatrists at the Reston, Manassas, and Leesburg Foot and Ankle Centers in Reston, Manassas, and Leesburg, VA, offer a range of options to help you recover from common orthopedic injuries and conditions like sprains, fractures, and heel pain.

Foot and Ankle Surgery in Reston, Manassas, and Leesburg, VA

Depending on the severity of your symptoms, cause of the injury, conservative treatments are usually the first course of action when dealing with foot and ankle problems like mild to moderate strains and joint issues like pain and inflammation. However, if a condition like a tear or a fracture is too severe, or your condition becomes chronic and stops responding to conservative treatments, surgery may be necessary to get you back on your feet so to speak.

When is Foot and Ankle Surgery Necessary?

Some of the most common causes for foot surgery include:

  • Joint damage/bunions
  • Bone spurs
  • Ligament or tendon ruptures/tears
  • Broken bones
  • Deformities or abnormalities
  • Nerve damage

Even if conservative treatments have worked for you in the past, surgery may be the best option to relieve ongoing symptoms like pain and mobility issues, or to prevent permanent damage to a joint or nerve tissue. The type of surgery and required recovery time and rehabilitation treatment typically depends on the condition and individual patient, and in some cases, you may still have to undergo physical therapy treatments in addition to surgery.

Find a Foot and Ankle Surgeon in Reston, Manassas, and Leesburg, VA

For more information about foot and ankle injury treatments and surgery, contact the Reston Foot and Ankle Center by calling (703) 437-6333 to schedule an appointment with a foot and ankle surgeon today. Call (703) 368-7166 for the Manassas location, or (703) 777-2101 for the Leesburg location.

Reston, Manassas, Leesburg, Virginia – 7/31/18 Steven Gordon, DPM, FACFAS, a member of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS), says he’s noticing more and more overweight and obese children with foot and ankle pain in his examining room, mirroring a national epidemic of childhood obesity.

An estimated 16 percent of U.S. children ages six to 19 are overweight, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Poor diet, lack of exercise and genetics can play a role. A “vicious cycle’ of foot pain and obesity traps some children.

“You want overweight children to exercise and lose weight, but because of their weight, their feet hurt and they can’t exercise,” says Gordon, a foot and ankle surgeon in Reston, Manassas, Leesburg.


The foot is a complex structure consisting of 26 bones, 33 joints and more than 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments. Last November, researchers in Britain reported “alarming new evidence that childhood obesity changes foot structure and results in instability when walking.” Being overweight flattens the foot, straining the plantar fascia, a band of tissue which runs from the heel to the base of the toes, causing heel pain.

Because the heel bone is not fully developed until age 14 or older, overweight children are more prone to Severs disease. Although not an actual disease, it involves an inflammation of the heel’s growth plate due to muscle strain and repetitive stress. Walking makes the pain worse. Being overweight may also cause stress fractures, or hairline fractures (breaks) in a child’s heel bone.

According to the ACFAS Web site FootHealthFacts.org, some overweight children suffer foot pain from congenital or inherited foot conditions, such as bunions, hammertoes, pediatric flatfoot and tarsal coalition, an abnormal connection between two or more bones in the back of the foot. Children with these deformities may be less active because of pain. Sometimes a child will complain of calf or arch pain. This results from a flatfoot that is flexible. The collapsing of the arch can require more energy, making it more difficult for a child to walk and run.

Foot and ankle surgeons treat many overweight children with custom orthotic devices (shoe inserts), physical therapy and other conservative measures to reduce or eliminate pain. But treating painful feet and ankles is only part of the childhood weight loss equation.

“As foot and ankle surgeons, we can reduce the aches and pains so these children can run around and play like all the other kids, but parents need to take responsibility for watching their children’s’ lifestyles and diets,” says Gordon

For more information on foot and ankle conditions, visit FootHealthFacts.org.

Taking a vacation? Make it easy on your feet

(Reston, Manassas, and Leesburg, VA – 7/20/2018) Although rest and relaxation are the goals for most vacations, they usually involve a lot of walking and a lot of walking usually involves sore feet.

"Walking is great exercise and one of the most reliable forms of transportation," says Shaun Hafner, DPM, FACFAS, a foot and ankle surgeon with offices in Northern Virginia. "But if your feet aren’t in the best shape or you don’t have the right shoes, too much walking can cause foot problems."

According to Dr. Hafner, good foot care is essential if you plan to subject your feet to long periods of walking. Some simple foot care tips include:

  • Wear thick, absorbent socks (acrylic instead of cotton).
  • Dry feet thoroughly after bathing, making sure to dry between toes. Use powder before putting on shoes.
  • Nails should be cut regularly, straight across the toe.
  • Bunions, hammertoes or any other serious foot problems should be evaluated by a foot and ankle surgeon.

"The right shoe is also important to healthy walking," say Dr. Hafner. "The ideal walking shoe should be stable from side to side, and well-cushioned, and it should enable you to walk smoothly. Many running shoes will fit the bill."

He adds there are also shoes made especially for walking. Walking shoes tend to be slightly less cushioned, yet not as bulky, and lighter than running shoes. Whether a walking or running shoe, the shoes need to feel stable and comfortable.

Warming up exercises to help alleviate any muscle stiffness or pulled muscles are also advised before walking. Loosening up the heel cords (Achilles and calf) and thigh muscles before a walk is especially effective.

"If you’re not accustomed to long walks, start slowly and rest if your feet start hurting," says Dr. Shaun Hafner. "And above all, have fun."

Reston, Manassas, Leesburg, Virginia 7/20/18 Although rest and relaxation are the goals for most vacations, they usually involve a lot of walking and a lot of walking usually involves sore feet.

"Walking is great exercise and one of the most reliable forms of transportation," says Steven Gordon,DPM FACFAS, a foot and ankle surgeon with offices in Reston, Manassas, and Leesburg, "But if your feet aren’t in the best shape or you don’t have the right shoes, too much walking can cause foot problems."

According to Gordon, good foot care is essential if you plan to subject your feet to long periods of walking. Some simple foot care tips include:

  • Wear thick, absorbent socks (acrylic instead of cotton).
  • Dry feet thoroughly after bathing, making sure to dry between toes. Use powder before putting on shoes.
  • Nails should be cut regularly, straight across the toe.
  • Bunions, hammertoes or any other serious foot problems should be evaluated by a foot and ankle surgeon.

"The right shoe is also important to healthy walking," say Gordon. "The ideal walking shoe should be stable from side to side, and well-cushioned, and it should enable you to walk smoothly. Many running shoes will fit the bill."

He adds there are also shoes made especially for walking. Walking shoes tend to be slightly less cushioned, yet not as bulky, and lighter than running shoes. Whether a walking or running shoe, the shoes need to feel stable and comfortable.

Warming up exercises to help alleviate any muscle stiffness or pulled muscles are also advised before walking. Loosening up the heel cords (Achilles and calf) and thigh muscles before a walk is especially effective.

"If you’re not accustomed to long walks, start slowly and rest if your feet start hurting," says Gordon. "And above all, have fun."

Contact Gordon's office at 703-437-6333 for more information. Gordon is a member of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS). Their consumer Web site, FootHealthFacts.org, provides reliable information on foot and ankle conditions.





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