foot pain

Joanna Lumley - Trench Foot - Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston

Joanna Lumley is a top model from the 60’s and a TV superstar for almost four decades. But this British actress suffered from trench foot after she was cast away in an island to test her survival skills. Trench foot is a painful medical condition caused by exposure of the feet to damp and unclean conditions for a long time. The feet becomes numb, swollen, experience color change, and it start to smell too. The medical term for this condition is called Non Freezing Cold Injury or Immersion Foot.

What is trench foot?

The term Trench foot originates back to 1812 with Napoleon’s Army. The infected feet became numb and start to smell making it susceptible to fungal infections. When not treated, it will result to gangrene, and can lead to foot amputation later on.

Consult a podiatrist if you notice anything unusual in your feet. The doctors at Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston are podiatrists who specialize in helping people suffering with foot disorders.

Trench foot causes

The main cause of having trench foot is standing and exposing the feet to cold, and wet places for eleven or more hours. Trench foot was very rampant during World War 1 where soldiers didn’t have waterproof footwear.

How can I tell if I have trench foot?

  • Tingling/itching sensation
  • Loss of feeling
  • Swelling
  • Numbness
  • Prickly or heavy feeling
  • While warming, burning can be severe
  • Blisters
  • Can involve heel, toes, and entire foot
  • Burning sensation
  • Pain
  • Cold and blotchy skin
  • Foot can appear gray
  • Foot is red, dry, and painful after warming
  • Fissures of the skin is common
  • Skin is dying and falling off

Treatment for trench foot

If you think you have trench foot, seek medical assistance immediately. Treatment involves the following steps:

  • Clean and dry the feet thoroughly
  • Gently warm the feet by soaking the feet in warm water for about 5 minutes
  • Remove footwear and wet socks
  • Keep the foot elevated and avoid walking to prevent tissue damage
  • Keep the feet warm and dry
  • Check for wounds, these can make you prone to infections. Check your feet daily to avoid infections. With early treatment, trench foot can be managed effectively and you can avoid amputation.

How to prevent trench foot?

These following steps may help to  prevent trench foot (check with your podiatrist first)

  • Elevate your feet or lie down to encourage blood circulation.
  • Change into dry socks almost every day.
  • Move your legs around or walk to get the blood flowing.
  • Wash and dry your feet daily.
  • Wear shoes that fit well.
  • Control excessive perspiration using aluminum chloride.
  • Clean and air dry your feet.
  • Wipe your shoes and allow them to dry.
  • Keep the rest of your body warm.
  • Maintain good foot hygiene.
  • Apply talcum powder to keep moisture away.
  • Alternate foot wear daily.

At Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston with six offices located in North Houston, TX, we specialize in helping people with foot disorders. To schedule an appointment, call 281-444-4114.


Simple Foot Gout Treatments - Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston

Pain is a clear indication that something is definitely wrong in that part of the body. And when pain and inflammation is noticed in the big toes, this can be an indication of gout. Knowing the symptoms of gout can help you catch it in its early stages. This makes the condition easier to treat and prevent it from occurring in the future.

Talk to a podiatrist if you suspect gout. Diagnosis of the condition includes checking your family for history of gout. It can also include a look into your lifestyle habits, your diet and alcohol intake.

Treating Foot Gout

Gout can be easily managed with a few lifestyle changes. Uric acid deposits which are responsible for gout can be controlled by changing your diet. Meats which is rich in purine the precursor to uric acid should be minimized. The kidneys are responsible for filtering uric acid and eliminating it through urination. But when uric acid levels exceed those of the kidney’s capacity, this continuous to circulate in the body and is deposited in the joints.

People who occasionally suffer from gout can use non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDS. It reduces inflammation and provides immediate pain relief. Self-medication is discouraged. Aspirins for example could interfere with the elimination of uric acids. Consult a podiatrist if you feel you are suffering from gout. The doctors at Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston are podiatrists who specialize in helping people suffering from gout.

Corticosteroid injections can be used to treat severe gout episodes. Directly introducing this to the affected joints instantly reduces inflammation which is responsible for triggering pain.

Dietary changes include reducing foods and drinks that are rich in purines and protein. Examples of these include red meat, organ meats (liver and kidneys), peas and beans.

Drinking more fluids helps reduce uric acid concentration. Alcohol can also increase uric acid crystals so reducing your alcohol intake can greatly improve your condition.

Getting off your feet can also help reduce stress on the joints. Using cold compress helps relieve inflammation. Just like NSAIDS, it effectively reduces inflammation whiles soothing the joints.   

These are just some of the steps to treat gout symptoms. But for long term health solutions, visit a podiatrist.  At Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston with six offices located in North Houston, TX, we specialize in helping people suffering from gout.   To schedule an appointment, call 281-444-4114