Query: Foot and Ankle Pain Post-COVID Vaccine
I have seen 4 patients who have developed increasing foot and ankle pain post-COVID vaccine. They seem to do worse after the second vaccine dose. Has anyone else had this experience?
Kaitlin Gonzales, DPM, Roselle, NJ
Query: Intermetatarsal Bursitis
I have a patient who developed a sharp pain "like walking on a pebble", with popping in the 3rd interspace after walking with ice cleats in late January. It appeared to be a typical Morton's neuroma but after no response to 3 cortisone injections along with tapings and met pads, an MRI was ordered. The only thing the MRI showed is some fluid in the interspace consistent with an intermetatarsal bursitis with no evidence of neuroma or other neurovascular abnormalities.
The patient hasn't been able to walk much with very limited activities because of the pain. Any ideas on how to treat an intermetatarsal bursitis conservatively?
Query: Inserts or Adjustments for an Arborist
I’m looking for advice and recommendations on shoes or inserts or adjustments to accommodate a healthy, fit 35 year old professional arborist. He uses Buckingham steel climbers for tree climbing which hits his medial plantar calcaneal tubercle, hurting it. He is already doing his stretching exercises, wearing orthotics with heel cutouts for off-loading, wearing an equinus brace, wearing a night splint, had a cortisone injection, which all helped. But he feels the steel is hitting the very spot that causes him pain.
I wonder if there is something that can be done to the steel, shoes, or orthotics to help minimize the pressure to his distal heel where it hits the straps on his work boots.
Query: Post-Surgical Neuropathic Pain and COVID-19
In the last 3 months, we have noticed an increase in neuropathic pain in some of our patients who have undergone surgeries after receiving recent COVID-19 vaccinations. I assume this is an inflammatory response triggered by the vaccination. Has anyone else noticed this as well?
David Weiss, DPM, Henrico, VA
Query: Green Toenails
The patient is a 72 year old male who came to the office complaining of 10 green toenails. He has no history of new green interior shoes or green socks. He had been using topical Kerasal nail renewal 2x daily and states green color appeared subsequently. Certainly not pseudomonas nor candida. Not removable with alcohol swab. The green is easily removed on left foot with rotary sanding disc.
Before treatment, I suggested he wait until after St. Patrick's Day. Anyone else see this colorful side-effect? Kerasal’s main ingredients include propylene glycol, urea, lactic acid, sodium hydroxide EDTA. I personally use this product with no ill effect.
Query: Random Bruising on Feet
A 30 year old female presented with excruciating pain to her heels that runs up her calves. The pain would keep her up at night crying. She is otherwise healthy but 2 years ago, she was having pains all over and was eventually diagnosed with a connective tissue disorder, non-specific, by her rheumatologist. He put her on plaquenil. Because of all the pain she is having, throughout the years, he sent her to 14 different specialists. She doesn't have pain like typical plantar fasciitis or tendinitis or nerve pain like tarsal tunnel. Her feet are cold and changes color. It was thought that she has Raynaud's but her rheumatologist later dismissed it because of the pics she just sent me of the random bruising she would get. These are not necessarily the painful areas. They just appear out of nowhere.
Random Bruising on Feet
Initially, I prescribed her nitro paste which helped her cold feet, but not the pain. I prescribed her a steroid pack. She said that was the only thing that seemed to have helped her pain and was a great relief to her, but about a month later, the pains came back with a vengeance. Any ideas of what she might have that would give her random bruisings? I'm planning to give her another steroid pack but to consult with her rheumatologist on maybe a more long-term steroid regimen.
Query: Turf Toe
I am trying to help a patient with turf toe. He injured his foot while playing rugby. He described being tackled and having the 1st MPJ severely extended. He was in a good amount of pain and self-treated his condition with the R.I.C.E. protocol. There was moderate pain when palpating the 1st MPJ, mostly around the plantar and lateral aspect of the joint. Mild to moderate edema was noted. Increased pain was elicited with dorsiflexion of the joint. Palpation of the sesamoid bones did not elicit pain.
He does not want to have x-rays. His ability to ambulate seems to rule out severe ligament injury. Clinically, I would diagnose this as a stage one to stage two turf toe injury. I recommended rest and anti-inflammatories. I cast him for orthotics and will incorporate a Morton's extension to limit dorsiflexion of the 1st MPJ. I assume he can continue to wear this device even when he begins playing rugby again. Is there any other accommodation I should be incorporating into his orthotic? I educated him on the need to wear a rigid sole athletic shoe such as the Brooks Beast or New Balance 1540 when he is not wearing his work boots.
Query: Heel Pressure-Induced Injuries (Decubiti)
After more than 40 years in active practice, I still find decubiti challenging to treat. Off-loading continues to be a chore, and patient compliance is very difficult as well. I have experimented with various devices with a mixed array of results. I am wondering if these thoughts are universal.
Michael J Marcus, DPM, Montebello, CA
Query: MIS Surgery on a Patient with Sickle Cell Anemia
I have always avoided operating on anyone with sickle cell (not trait) anemia. However, I would like an opinion from some of my colleagues on an unusual situation. I have a 16 year old patient who is having real psychological problems because of severe painful hallux valgus deformities. She is bullied, made fun of, and refuses to go to school because of her feet. The parents are all for having it done, though I explained the risks, and though I have not spoken to her PCP yet, he gave her a medical clearance. Does anyone have experience operating on a sickle cell patient, or should this be avoided at all costs. The procedure would be performed in an outpatient ASC using minimally invasive surgical techniques.
Query: Dermatitis or COVID-19?
A 29 year old healthy female presented with this rash on top of her foot. She had a pedicure 2 days prior, where gel polish was removed with acetone wraps on her toes. Acetone did not contact the top of her foot. She felt immediate burning on the affected foot upon placing her feet in a basin of warm water. The lesions appeared almost immediately and became progressively worse. The other foot shows some very mild lesions.
Dermatitis or COVID-19?
The foot does not itch but is painful and tender. 1% hydrocortisone cream didn't help and caused burning. There is no cellulitis, lymphangitis, or lymphadenitis. She received the second Pfizer shot about 10 days prior. She developed reactions consisting of flare of cold sores, flare of eczema, mild fever, and fatigue that lasted 1-2 days. My question is could this be a reaction to the COVID-19 vaccine? I started her on antibiotics. If there is no improvement next appointment, I plan on a biopsy. I told her to call the phone number on the vaccine card about this possible vaccine reaction. Any thoughts would be appreciated.
Query: Intralesional Candida Antigen Injections for Verruca Plantaris
I have a patient with numerous bilateral recalcitrant verruca plantaris ask about treatment with candida injections. I have done some research, but wonder if anyone has experience with efficacy, side-effects, and could share your protocol and billing practice.
Karla Stipati, DPM, Saint Charles, IL
Query: Recommendations for Treatment of Raynaud's
Since this winter has been colder than usual, a lot of my patients, especially females, are having issues with Raynaud’s changes to their toes. What are your treatments? Many of my patients are home (due to COVID) and not in shoes and socks as well.
Jeffrey Klirsfeld, DPM, Levittown, NY
Query: Nerve Entrapment
My patient is a 30+ y/o African-American lady who has had two previous tarsal tunnel releases with re-entrapment. Her PMH is unremarkable. Her previous surgical scars are heavy but not keloid. She has point tenderness distal to the tarsal tunnel where the nerve dives behind the muscle, mainly involving the medial branch.
I have not used any nerve conduit for many years but I am considering it on this case. I have used GraftJacket as well as products to decrease formation of excess scar tissue but there is just nothing that I could say gives consistently good results. Suggestions and comments are welcomed.
Query: Prurigo Nodularis/Picker's Nodule
Recently, I surgically excised a skin lesion on a 62 year old well-controlled diabetic female. The pathology report came back: prurigo nodularis/Picker's nodule with underlying scar/granulation tissue and fat necrosis. Should I have any concerns as to the post-op course? It has been three weeks and healing has been uneventful.
Query: Non-Painful Bump on Ankle
This is an unusual incidental soft tissue finding in a 50 year old male who came in with painful retro-calcaneal pain. He recently noticed a non-painful bump on his ankle.
X-Rays of Non-Painful Bump on Ankle
He is on no meds and appears healthy. He has no history of parathyroid or other metabolic problems. Comments?
Query: Post-vaccination Dystrophic Toenails
A middle-aged female presented with dystrophic toenails. She relates that she had COVID back in May with no cough but had a 103 degree fever for 2 days. She has the antibodies to COVID. She took the first dose of the Moderna vaccine about two weeks ago and got fever, chills, and pains in her leg that felt like they were "shooting out of her toes."
Post-vaccination Dystrophic Toenails
Her symptoms lasted for two days. She had no trauma to the toenails, and did not change footgear. She is healthy with no meds and no allergies. There is no pain associated with the nail beds, and the rest of the nail seems to be attached to the nail bed. She contacted the CDC before the nails had this deformity, and is going to contact them again. Has anyone else seen this?
Query: Prescribing Protocol for Oral Antifungals
Has anyone changed their prescribing protocol for oral antifungals? I read a recent study where the authors did not see appreciable increases in liver enzymes throughout a 3-month course of Lamisil therapy. These patients did have higher than normal liver enzymes prior to starting the medication. If that is true and oral antifungals do not cause an increase in liver enzymes, then is there really a need to order a LFT prior to prescribing these medications?
Is anyone prescribing Lamisil (or any other oral antifungal) without first requiring a liver function test? Or, for that matter, prescribing oral antifungals to patients with already high liver enzymes (out of normal range)? This potentially creates a huge shift in how most of us practice. Are you aware of other studies with similar findings?
Dave Williams, DPM, El Paso, TX
Query: Treatment for Nail Problem in an 8 Year Old
I have an 8 year old patient with hallux nails that grow into the distal tuft. I successfully phenolized the borders so that he no longer gets infections.
Nail Problem in an 8 Year Old
I am asking for suggestions for care. How can I get these nails to grow over and beyond the tuft?
Query: Petechial Flexural Eruption and Digitate Papulosquamous Rashes?
1. petechial flexural eruption.
2. digitate papulosquamous rashes.
The post goes on to state "these skin conditions could occur at any time during and after infection and may contribute to the feeling of burning skin". The 98 symptoms were reported by what are now called "Covid Long Haulers", who may have had a severe or mild initial case of the contagion, but gets relapses of these symptoms for some time. About 10% of all clinical cases (not positive blood tests that have been conflated as cases) may be in that category. Can a dermatology maven out there translate these two descriptions into usable clinical images?
Robert Teitelbaum, DPM, Naples, FL
Query: Amniotic Fluid Injections for Moderate to Severe Osteoarthrosis
I have a 57 year old healthy, female patient with right ankle trauma in 1987. Recent x-rays, MRI and CT resulted in the following conclusions: Mild posterior subtalar joint osteoarthrosis, severe talonavicular joint osteoarthrosis, mild calcaneocuboid joint osteoarthrosis, moderate navicular-intermediate cuneiform joint osteoarthrosis, moderate navicular-lateral cuneiform joint osteoarthrosis, and mild navicular-medial cuneiform joint osteoarthrosis. She is looking to avoid surgery, as her only real option is multiple mid-foot fusions. She has worn a Ritchie brace, undergone cortisone injections, and exhausted all traditional, conservative medical care.
My question to my colleagues who have incorporated amniotic fluid injections and utilized them for a severe case is what were the results? I understand that everybody will respond differently. The patient is very open to the idea and I further believe that amniotic fluid will be more beneficial for her than PRP. With the multiple involved joints involved, the plan is for at least 4cc of fluid into multiple joints. The cost is not an issue, but I am curious what your experiences have been with its use for what I would consider to be a more extreme scenario than just PF, mild OA, neuroma, etc.
Query: Consecutive Hiccough Bouts Following Heel Injection
Just a clinical question as to whether any colleagues have ever encountered this - severe and persistent hiccough following heel injections on two separate occasions (the same patient after opposite heel injections one month apart). The patient reported unremitting hiccoughing hindering sleep that resolved the first time at 48 hours. The patient sought treatment the second time in a local urgent room where his symptoms were attributed to the injection. He was treated to resolution with baclofen. Apparently, this reaction has been reported with systemic administration but rarely (few case reports on cursory search) with regional injections.
Query: Raynaud’s Phenomenon in a Teenager
A 13 year old girl presented with her mom with the complaint of purple discoloration of her toes with itching for the past month. She is otherwise very healthy and was active in school sports, but has been very inactive for the past month or more due to distance learning at home. Her feet were icy cold and purplish in color. With pressure, the toes turned white with very slow capillary filling time. She said her hands have started to get really cold at times too. My first thought is Raynaud's phenomenon. When I mentioned this, she said that's what her grandmother has. There was no evidence of Covid toes which I had seen a few times this past spring, and no rash, blisters, or signs of chilblains.
Normally, I prescribe nifedipine 10mg capsules once daily and, if needed, increase it to one b.i.d., but I am a bit hesitant as she weighs only 70 pounds. The youngest person I have treated with Raynaud’s was an 18 year old girl at adult weight. Has anyone had any experience in treating Raynaud's in someone at this age and weight?
Query: Gout or Not gout?
I had a new patient come in who had gastric sleeve surgery 2 months ago. Since then, her right first MTPJ has been red hot and swollen. She has a history of a diagnosis of gout ten years ago. Both her parents have gout and are managed with colchicine and allopurinol. She was placed on Colcrys and allopurinol with no relief for the last two months.
She stated that she sees a rheumatologist for RA who feels this is not gout. She is getting no relief from the colchicine once daily and allopurinol. She brought in x-rays which were normal at the first MTPJ and for the entire foot. I had her increase the colchicine to TID for the next three days and will see her after that. If not improved, I will give her a posteior tibial nerve block to create a vascular flush of the area and a local steroid injection. My differential Dx at this time is 1) gout 2) pseudogout or 3) RA. Comments?
Query: Treating Verrucae in an Immunocompromised Patient
Recently, I treated a teenage heart transplant patient with a plantar 1st metatarsal crest area verruca. As far as I know, almost all transplant patients (kidney, heart, liver, etc.) take one or more immunosuppressive drugs to lessen the possibility of organ rejection. My patient was on oral Tacrolimus. Are there dermatologists who have experience with this type of case that I could or should have referred her to?
Is this a case that I had no good reason to take on in the first place? On further analysis, there are 5 or more immunosuppressive medicines advertised on TV used in rheumatology that suppress immune function and allow pathogens to spread. Is the same advice relevant for doctors treating these patients? Please advise.
Query: Relentless Heel Pain
We had a healthy 23 year old male present for fat grafting to his heel. He was a competitive ski jumper. Two years prior to his visit to us, he jumped and landed wrong on his left heel. He developed severe left heel pain but reported that his x-rays and MRI studies did not reveal a fracture. Initially, he limited weight-bearing and pressure on his left heel without relief. He reported he tried orthotics, had PT, EPAT, and “stem cell treatment with placenta”, but continued to have pain after two years of these various treatments. He presented to us asking for autologous fat grafting.
On examination, he had minimal pain on direct palpation of his heel but no pain on compression of his heel. He had a palpable “click” at the plantar central aspect of his heel. X-ray, ultrasound, and MRI were all negative for pathology. He reported that pain is always present when standing and walking on his heel, but it was difficult to elicit pain on palpation. We did attempt autologous fat grafting in the hopes the adipose tissue could ease any scar tissue he had. He is 9 months post-procedure with only minimal relief. Does anyone have any thoughts or ideas about his heel pain?