Quick Facts on Foot and Ankle Care in Our Podiatry FAQ

How can you tell if there is a bone spur in your heel? When should patients consider surgery for torn ligaments? Our FAQ page explores a variety of foot and ankle questions to help patients get the care they need. Search through our FAQ to get answers on your condition.

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  • How does Tenex treat heel pain?

    When discussing how Tenex treats heel pain, the best starting point is to look at the most common causes of heel issues – plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendinitis. In both cases, the main problem is damaged soft tissue—the plantar fascia or Achilles tendon, respectively—that becomes inflamed and causes you pain.

    Essentially, Tenex is an efficient heel pain treatment because it gently breaks down and removes the damaged part of the tissue, without having any effect on the healthy tissue around it. More specifically, though, we first locate the damaged area using ultrasound diagnostics. Then we numb it and insert a TX MicroTip—which resembles a hollow needle—through a tiny incision and directly into the tissue.

    The TX MicroTip is then agitated at an impressively fast rate, which serves to break down and remove damaged tissue. Additionally, this procedure enhances the body’s natural healing processes, speeding them up for a quicker recovery.

    In a vast majority of cases, the pain relief is almost immediate and you will be able to return back to all normal activities within six weeks (depending on various factors, naturally).

    If you would like additional information on the Tenex treatment we offer, contact Massapequa Podiatry Associates and our staff will be glad to help. If you, or any of your loved ones, are currently experiencing heel pain, request an appointment with our Massapequa, NY office by calling (516) 541-9000 right now. 

  • Why is it important to warm up before exercising?

    Warming up before a workout, run, or game provides important benefits, both physical and mental.

    A warm-up routine featuring some stretching and light cardio helps prepare you for more vigorous, explosive exercise that puts more stress on your body. It allows you to raise your body temperature, heart rate, and blood flow gradually under safe and controlled conditions; thrusting yourself directly into high-octane exercise without a warm up can increase your risk of sudden injuries.

    Warming up can also provide mental benefits. For many, a brief warm-up session provides focus and helps boost concentration and confidence, and is an important part of preparing for a long run, a big game, or an important dance performance.

    For more information on stretches and physical therapy exercises to help prevent foot injuries, or to address an existing injury, please call Massapequa Podiatry Associates at 516-541-9000 today. You can also request an appointment online, and our staff will get in touch with you to schedule.

  • Could my shoes be causing hammertoes?

    There is a strong link between footwear choice and the development of hammertoes. Extremely tight shoes that cram toes into narrow or pointed spaces are a major culprit, as are high heels that push all of your weight forward onto the front portion of your feet. When toes remain bent in the same position for extended periods of time, and especially if they have to bear excess pressure and weight in that position, the muscle pairs responsible for bending and straightening the toe may become unbalanced, leaving the toe unable to lie flat even when barefoot.

    There’s some disagreement in the medical community whether shoes can cause hammertoes all by themselves, or whether there needs to be at least one other underlying factor. However, it’s abundantly clear that wearing ill-fitting shoes can rapidly accelerate the development of hammertoes regardless of initial cause.

    If you seek treatment for hammertoes early, you may be able to avoid surgery. If your toes are looking a little bent, please call Massapequa Podiatry Associates at 516-541-9000 today.

  • Do I need surgery to correct my hammertoes?

    In most cases, yes, you will need a surgical procedure to correct a hammertoe, in the sense of permanently resetting a bent digit in its correct alignment. Once digits start to bend, you can’t really coax them back to stay in their original place any other way.

    However, surgery is not always necessary to treat a hammertoe. In the earliest stages where the deformity in less severe and the joint is still flexible and posable, conservative treatments may provide the necessary pain relief to get you through your activities without limitation or discomfort, as well as slow or halt further progression of the hammertoe. Such measures may include changing shoes or shoe modifications, medications, padding, taping, splinting, physical therapy, or custom orthotics.

    A thorough evaluation at Massapequa Podiatry Associates will help determine which treatment methods would be recommended in your situation. The earlier you seek treatment, the greater the number of options available to you. To make an appointment, please call 516-541-9000.

  • Can nerve damage be reversed?

    Sometimes, but it depends.

    The central nervous system (CNS)—the brain and spinal cord—have very limited regenerative ability, so injuries to these areas often cause lasting damage. Peripheral nerves, which run outward from the CNS into your hands and feet, do a little better in this regard; however, the longer you wait before seeking treatment, the more likely that damage to even these nerves will become permanent.

    Treatments for hurting nerves will vary a bit depending on the source and severity of your condition. Managing underlying conditions (such as diabetes or PAD) is crucial. Exercise, improved diet, and other medical interventions are also frequently recommended. But you need to be proactive—an accurate diagnosis and an immediate treatment plan give you the best chance at halting, and hopefully reversing, any existing nerve damage.

    To schedule an appointment with Dr. Fox at Massapequa Podiatry Associates, please fill out our online contact form or give us a call at 516-541-9000.

  • Can I exercise with neuropathy?

    Yes! In fact, we encourage anyone with neuropathy to have a sensible exercise plan. Regular exercise can help minimize muscle pain and cramping related to neuropathy, and helps improve your circulation, keeping blood pumping nutrients to your nerves as efficiently as possible.

    However, we do ask that you check in with us, or with your regular family doctor, before initiating any official exercise routine. Neuropathy poses unique challenges and risks, and we wouldn’t want you engaging in any activities that could damage your feet or lead to accidents related to muscle weakness, loss of balance, or other related problems.

    Generally speaking, sitting and stretching exercises, strength training, and low-impact cardio such as cycling or swimming are great options for people dealing with peripheral neuropathy. However, other activities may be approved or disapproved based on your condition. A full examination is recommended to help devise the best treatment plan and tailor a workout routine that will offer you the greatest benefit. To set up an appointment at our Long Island podiatry office, please call 516-541-9000 today.

  • Are there stretches to help with hammertoes?

    Although stretches can’t “fix” a hammertoe—once the toes begin to bend, only surgery can permanently correct the deformity—toe stretches while the joints are still flexible can help you manage pain, prevent the deformity from worsening, and ideally help keep you walking and wearing shoes normally and comfortably without needing surgical correction.

    Stretches and exercises that help with hammertoes are designed to strengthen weakened toe muscles and improve flexibility and range of motion in the joints. Specific exercises may include things like crunching or grabbing towels or blankets, or picking up marbles with your toes. Even simple manual stretches, such as gently pulling your toes into a straightened position or squeezing them together with your fingers, can help.

    If you’re suffering from early-stage hammertoes, be proactive: contact Massapequa Podiatry Associates for help with conservative management tools and techniques. We can also provide surgical correction, but we’d love to spare you the knife if possible! Schedule an appointment with Dr. Corey Fox by dialing 516-541-9000 or use our online form.

  • How can I prevent dance injuries?

    To help minimize the risk of injury, dancers should always make sure that their shoes fit well and are appropriate for the style of dance they choose. You should pay close attention to technique and listen to your instructor—poor form can lead to extra stress. You should also understand the limits of your body—always take proper time to warm up and cool down, give yourself as much rest as you need between dance sessions, and never ever push yourself beyond what you can handle or through the pain. If it hurts, don’t ignore it! That’s a surefire way to make the problem worse.

    Dr. Corey Fox of Massapequa Foot Associates has worked with professional dance groups and instructors and understands the unique challenges dancers face with injuries of the feet and ankles, such as plantar fasciitis, ingrown nails, stress fractures, sprains, and more. Whether your passion is ballet, modern, hip hop, ballroom, or step dancing, we can help! To set an appointment, please call us today at 516-541-9000 or use our online form

  • Do home remedies for warts work?

    Suggested home remedies for plantar wart removal abound, including the more “formal” methods (like over-the-counter wart removal patches, liquids, or medicines) and some that fall a little more into the DIY spectrum (such as the so-called “duct tape” method, garlic rubs, pastes, and more).

    While it’s possible that some home remedies for warts may be beneficial (especially the kind you can get in an ordinary pharmacy), the studies on their effectiveness is mixed at best. While they probably help some people, the overall success rate is low compared to office treatment.

    At Massapequa Podiatry Associates, Dr. Corey Fox offers CryoPen therapy, which uses an advanced cooling technique to safely freeze and remove warts. It’s much more effective on average than home therapies, and what we recommend for those with irritating or painful plantar warts. However, since drugstore remedies are generally safe, you may consider trying them first for minor cases to see if they help.

    To schedule an appointment with Dr. Fox, please complete our online appointment request form or give us a call at 516-541-9000.

  • How are fungal toenails treated?

    Before the last decade or so, the only way to treat fungal toenails with much hope of success was by taking a prescription-strength oral antifungal pill for a period of several weeks. Although this was usually successful, the cure rate was low enough that a significant minority of patients did not see success, and the pills themselves could cause side effects such as rashes, nausea, or liver damage.

    However, modern technology has provided a new option: laser treatment. This method uses specific wavelengths of light that penetrate the nail and painlessly kill the microorganisms causing the infection without damaging surrounding tissues or causing other side effects. Dr. Fox was the first podiatrist on Long Island to introduce the Noveon laser system to his patients, and has found it to be much more effective than traditional treatment. Most people will need 2-3 sessions, though it may vary depending on the severity and number of nails affected.

    In any case, it will take some time for already damaged nails to grow out, so don’t wait until sandal weather comes around again—seek treatment today. You can request an appointment online, or you can call us at 516-541-9000.