So is some foot pain normal?
From a medical aspect ... the answer is no. It is a clear sign that something is wrong, and needs to be evaluated and treated.
Men are the first to admit they usually resist going to a doctor when their feet hurt. But the good news is that most foot or ankle problems are treatable, and easier to treat when diagnosed early.
Let’s look at foot pain this way—pain is like the oil light in your car. Left unchecked or ignored, what you may consider "some foot pain" can slowly worsen until it becomes more difficult and expensive to resolve.
Men: If you currently have foot pain, here are five foot problems you should never ignore:
Heel Pain- this is often caused by tissue inflammation, but can also result from what is known as a “stress fracture,” or a tight heel cord or plantar fasciitis which left untreated can eventually rupture.
Ankle Sprains- if severe, these should always require a prompt visit to the doctor. If left ignored, sprains may develop into chronic instability or tendon disease which eventually may require surgery.
Joint Stiffness – stiffness of any joint of the foot or ankle that develops slowly allows the natural joint cartilage to wear down leading to pain and loss of function. A painful arthritic joint left to develop over time usually results in joint replacement or fusion.
Tendonitis – usually develops from a sudden increase in physical activity at work or when men play weekend sports. Tendonitis left untreated may lead to a tear or rupture which usually requires casting, surgery or both.
Toenails – whether the toenails are thick or ingrown, “bathroom surgery” should be avoided and is especially considered dangerous if you have diabetes or have poor circulation. Treatment is usually straightforward and less dangerous if treated early.
If you are suffering from any of the above conditions or know of anyone who is also presently suffering, please take a moment and explore Penn Foot & Ankle Specialists website www.pennfoot.com and click Patient Handouts and you will find answers regarding foot and ankle conditions.
By James A. Marks DPM, who is the medical director of The Wound & Skin Healing Center and Hyperbaric Medicine at The Washington Hospital in Washington, PA. He is also a partner with Drs. Nicholas Lowery and Brandon Crim of Penn Foot & Ankle Specialists with office locations in Washington and Cecil. New patients are welcome. He can be reached at 724-222-5635.