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Have you found that there is a thick layer of skin on some parts of your body? It may be your toes or feet or on your hands. Those are calluses that develop when there is a lot of friction in that part. You might get them on your fingers from playing an instrument… perhaps the drums or guitar. They also occur on your feet if you wear ill-fitting shoes.


For the purpose of this post, we’re going to focus solely (no pun intended) on what happens to your feet and how you can take better care to prevent this from happening and what kind of treatments you might need.


Read on to learn all about corns and calluses and what you can do about them.


Causes & Symptoms


The main cause of this tends to be from those shoes that may look great but are extremely tight on your feet. That creates friction and ultimately those corns or calluses. It can also happen if you wear shoes that would normally fit if you wore socks but you decide to recreate the 1984 Miami Vice look of going sockless. The cast of that show had people who could care for their feet 24-7. That’s not the case for you. 


If you get corns or calluses, you can see some hard raised bumps on your feet. If you don’t get them fixed, you could wind up having conditions progress to things like bunions, hammertoe or other deformities like bone spurs.




When you come to see your doctor, they will make sure that there isn’t something else causing those hardened bumps - like perhaps a wart or a cyst. They may take an X-ray to be absolutely sure. 


The most likely thing that the doctor will do is tell you to stop doing whatever is causing the problem. They may tell you to wear socks with your shoes. You may have to bump up a shoe size to ensure that you have the proper fit. They may remove excess skin using a scalpel (Do NOT try this at home). There are callus-removing medications that you can get over the counter. Surgery is an option but that’s for very rare scenarios involving how a bone is aligned in your foot.


A popular remedy is to get a pumice stone or a nail file and sand away the callus, but being careful to not remove too much skin. If you have a foot deformity, then there are inserts that you can put in your shoes.


What to Do Afterward


Now that you have smooth feet again, what can you do to prevent recurrences? One of the best things that you can do for your feet is to put moisturizing cream on them. That can both keep your skin from hardening and cracking and also soften and corns and calluses. You want to be safe, though, and not take off too much skin.


Ultimately, it comes down to taking good care of your feet by doing things like ensuring that your shoes are well-fitted. This is very important if you have diabetes, since the flow of blood to your feet will be compromised. If you are wearing a new pair, be sure to protect certain areas of your feet, such as the heels, to keep them from becoming chafed or have those calluses form. Do this until the shoes are truly comfortable and broken in.


If things keep persisting, you can see a foot doctor to see what suggestions they have to get you on the right path to good foot health. Then you can go back to enjoying things like walking around outside and not have to worry about the state of your feet.


Dr. John J Hickey has nearly 40 years of experience working with patients and their feet. He can help you with your corns and your calluses and ensure that you are out and about walking pain-free again. Give him a call at 516-735-4545 to make an appointment today!


Published by:

Levittown Podiatry

2870 Hempstead Tpke, Suite 103,

Levittown, New York 11756

Phone: (516) 735-4545


Geriatric Foot Problems in Levittown, NYAlthough the distance of the years between your date of birth and your age may have widened some, that doesn’t mean that you have to feel older. Then again, certain parts of your body do show some signs of aging, no matter how young your spirit may feel. Feet have a particular bothersome habit of developing issues as you get older. Fear not. There are many ways that you can still enjoy your life in Levittown - you just have to add a few foot care routines each day. It’s not that time-consuming and you can reap tremendous benefits.


It’s always good to do research beforehand. But be sure to look at reputable sites that give you sound medical advice for your feet. Since the Internet has made it really simple for people to create web sites and sell unproven things or suggest possibly dangerous remedies, make sure that your source is a well-known one, like WebMd or something similar.


Here are some geriatric foot problems that you might encounter.


Common Issues


The main issues tend to be mild ones that can affect people of all ages. They include corns, calluses, and ingrown toenails. Make sure that you have the right footwear for your feet. Your immune system is not quite as robust and may have trouble keeping pathogens out - that may open the door for things like athlete’s foot and nail fungus.


Another thing to look out for is gradual flattening of the feet. Your connective tissues may loosen and you can develop tendonitis or plantar fasciitis. The skin of your feet, like much more your body, will get thinner and you will be losing padding in the heel, which means you don’t have protection from the ground. Metatarsalgia, which is pain in the ball of the foot can result as well as neuromas, which is pressure on the nerves of your foot.


Arthritis is where joints in your feet wear down and might even damage your feet to the point where walking is extremely painful or even impossible. Foot deformity is something you definitely do not want to have happen to you. Address arthritis as soon as you feel symptoms.


More Severe Ones

You want your feet to have adequate blood flow. Diabetes and circulatory issues present a big danger there. If that is compromised, that can lead to damage to your feet… up to and including tissue death, which might mean amputation. You need to pay strict attention to your overall health there and make sure that you are not losing sensation in your feet - which can then mask a host of other problems like cuts or bruises that won’t heal.


Overall Care


Check your shoes. Check your foot grooming equipment. Check your socks. Are they suitable for your needs? If you’re using a dull clipper, then it’s time to get a new one. Thin socks might feel comfortable but you need to have a well-fitting shoe to keep friction from causing blisters or calluses. Thick socks might be better but that might require a small bump in shoe size to accommodate that. But make sure that the socks are made of material that wicks moisture away instead of retaining it.


The most important thing to do is inspect your feet each day. See if there are any changes in the skin color, any cuts, or anything else. If the pain seems to worsen, then definitely seek out medical care. You need to find a balance to make sure that your quality of life continues to be excellent.


Of course, before you self-diagnose yourself of the above conditions, it’s always best to see a podiatrist to ensure that there are no underlying causes of your foot issues that might need more medical attention. That’s one drawback of the Internet. It has TOO much information at times. Only a doctor can verify. Once they have given you the OK, then you can go ahead and help your feet feel the best that they can.


Dr. John J Hickey is a podiatrist with many years of experience in helping people have healthy feet, no matter their age. He’s always happy to tell you what you can do for your foot care regimen. Give him a call at Levittown Podiatry to make an appointment: 516-735-4545.


Published by:

Levittown Podiatry

2870 Hempstead Tpke, Suite 103,

Levittown, New York 11756

Phone: (516) 735-4545


All about ingrown toenails in Levittown, NYDoes your big toe hurt? Does it feel like something is biting down into it? Chances are good that you have an ingrown toenail - the medical term is onychocryptosis. (tuck that one away for a possible appearance on “Jeopardy!”) A corner or a side of your toenail is growing into the skin and if you leave it unchecked, it could wind up becoming infected - including a possible bone infection. This can be problematic for many and very dangerous for people who have diabetes. 


This is a problem that affects many people and is often the reason for a good portion of visits to a podiatrist. While these appointments can help in the short term, they can also become recurring if your foot is not properly attended to afterwards at home. 


Here’s all you need to know about ingrown toenails




The first thing that you will likely notice is that your toe is very sore and tender to the touch. There may even be redness around the area where the toenail is growing into the skin. If it’s not treated it could possibly become infected and pus may come out of the area.




While incorrectly cutting your toenails is often the culprit, things like wearing shoes that crowd your toenails can do it. The shape and length of your toenails can also play a part - some are just curved and that can cause an ingrown toenail. Even something that may seem relatively harmless, like stubbing your toe, can lead to the toenail growing inward. 




There are ways that you can deal with this at home, including soaking your feet and then lifting the nail and putting a piece of dental floss or cotton under it. Put antibiotic ointment on it and bandage it. Pain relievers like Tylenol may help. This is only for irritated areas, not infected ones. If there’s pus, see a podiatrist immediately. Other options may involve getting part or all of the nail removed, depending on how bad it is. 


Once the issue is fixed, you need to remember to trim your toenails straight across. Don’t curve the nail. The same goes for if you visit nail salons - the person doing it should cut across. Also, don’t let them grow too long… but don’t keep them too short, since that might also cause the nail to grow into the skin. 


It’s important to wear shoes that fit properly and also protect your feet. Consider wearing steel-toed shoes if you work at a job that puts your feet at risk. You only get two feet. Guard them. 


Diabetes and Ingrown Toenails


The reason why ingrown toenails can be especially dangerous for diabetics that there’s usually already a lack of blood flow in the foot area and that can lead to difficulty in healing if the toe becomes infected. Add the fact that patients often may be unaware that there’s even an issue down there because they lose feeling in that area and it can be a dire situation that may even wind up resulting in amputation. It’s important that diabetics check their feet daily for any cuts, blisters or ingrown toenails. If anything is found, they need to see a medical professional as soon as possible.


Ingrown toenails can be an aggravation for many people, with three million annual cases. But all it takes is some sense and care when it is treated and everything can resolve within a few months. Be diligent, though, and pay attention to the shoes that you wear and the way that you cut your toenails. If you are worried about that last part, you can even ask your podiatrist to do it during an exam. They do this all the time, and it’s not anything to be embarrassed about.


When it comes to ingrown toenails, Dr. John J Hickey has seen a good amount of them over the course of his career. If you live in the Levittown area, he can help ensure that your situation gets under control. He will also show you the best way to cut your toenails so that it doesn’t happen again. Give him a call to make an appointment: 516-735-4545.


Published by:

Levittown Podiatry

2870 Hempstead Tpke, Suite 103,

Levittown, New York 11756

Phone: (516) 735-4545



Chronic ankle instability can lead to an element of uncertainty for day-to-day life of many people. They may wonder if this will be the day that their ankle rolls when they step off a curb or walk down some stairs. It can be quite embarrassing to take a tumble on a crowded street or busy office building. Add the fact that they then will find themselves out of commission for at least the next couple of days due to a sprained ankle, then it can become downright nightmarish.


There are other signs for ankle instability - such as swelling or tenderness. The ankle may just have a persistent feeling of being wobbly or unstable. Being uncertain about walking around is not a good feeling, especially if one’s job requires them to be on their feet all day. Athletes may face this problem a lot.


Fortunately, there are options for people who have this, and they can depend on how severe the problem is. Sometimes there’s an easy quick fix, while other times, a more in-depth option is needed. Whatever the case, they still need to see a medical professional to help guide them to do what they need to.


Here are some of the best treatments for ankle instability.


Physical Therapy

The physical therapist will work with the patient in order to strengthen the area around the ankle. It may involve doing exercises to make the ankle muscles stronger so that they can resist possibly rolling over. Range-of-motion techniques may be used. The whole goal here is to retrain muscles so that they can do the job that they were required to do in the first place. Ultimately, the physical therapist will likely give the patient a routine to continue at home. 


Another option is for the patient to wear an ankle brace to provide stability. This way, they won’t have to be worrying as much about what will be happening when they are walking around. They should still do exercise,though, so that they can keep the muscles strong and not be worried about possible atrophy. It can keep ankle sprains from occurring again. Another possibility is to wear high-top shoes that can also support the ankle. 


Pain medication can help keep any swelling or discomfort at a minimum. It’s best to talk with a doctor before starting any regimen, but over-the-counter ibuprofen can be a good choice. The patient just needs to follow the directions and not overdo it or keep on taking it beyond reasonable limits. 


This is generally the last option when all else has failed. Sometimes the ankle just gets too weak and surgical reconstruction or repair is needed. After that has been done, then the patient will likely have to undergo physical therapy to get back to where they were before the injury. 

Once a pattern of ankle rolling has begun, it takes a lot of attention to making sure that one doesn’t put themselves into a situation where it can possibly recur. That means that wearing high heels shoes is not a good idea - it’s better to preserve your teeth than risk an injury in the name of fashion. Things go in and out of style - healthy ankles are for life.

Dr. John J Hickey can help you get the best support for your ankles so that you won’t have to worry about being laid up with a sprained ankle in the future. He will use his extensive knowledge of podiatry to ensure that you have healthy feet. If you have any questions, give him a call at 516-735-4545 to make an appointment.

Published by:

Levittown Podiatry

2870 Hempstead Tpke, Suite 103,

Levittown, New York 11756

Phone: (516) 735-4545



All about plantar fasciitis in Levittown, NYThere’s tissue that connects in the foot and supports the foot’s arch. When something affects it, it’s called Plantar Fasciitis and people who get it have pain in the bottom of the foot as well as the heel. It usually starts when they put their feet on the ground and start walking and shows up as pain in the heel.


People who usually stand on their feet all day tend to get this problem Fortunately, for most, there are ways to deal with it. 

Read more to learn about how to deal with plantar fasciitis. 

Diagnosis and Treatment

First, the doctor will examine your foot and have you have X-rays and an MRI to rule out things like stress fractures. 

The good news is that most of the people who have plantar fasciitis tend to not need surgery. Instead, they will likely need to do the following: 

  • Resting - This is the best thing to do since it allows the condition to subside. Stay off your feet for as long as possible.
  • Stretching - Doing certain stretches involving the arch of the foot can prevent plantar fasciitis from rearing its head again. It will keep everything loose throughout the day.
  • Icing - People do this to keep any swelling from possibly occurring. Be careful to only do it for 20 minutes at a time to avoid damaging the skin or foot via frostbite.
  • Taking painkillers - These can reduce the discomfort and inflammation - take things like Motrin or Aleve. Do this especially if your job will be difficult about having to stay on your feet instead of being able to sit. 


Other Methods

Additionally, once they have done enough of the above, they can proceed to the next set of things, which include: 

  • Night Splints - People wear these while sleeping overnight in order to stretch out their calves and feet
  • Orthotics - Sometimes these can support the arch of the foot, especially those who have flat feet and can give them a curve. These are inserts that can go into regular footwear.
  • Physical Therapy - Seeing a physical therapist can be beneficial - they can perform stretches on you and then show you certain ones you can do in the comfort of your own home to stay on track. 



If the conventional ways do not work, then there are other options, including and up to surgery: 

  • Extracorporeal shockwave therapy - Shockwaves are sent into the foot to stimulate healing.
  • Injections - A doctor may inject a steroid, but this should not be done often since the fascia can weaken and rupture. Also, there is an option for platelet-rich plasma which can help healing.
  • Surgery -This is the worst-case scenario where all else has failed. The surgeon will detach the fascia from the heel bone. They can do it through a small incision.
  • Ultrasonic Tissue Repair - This is done to break up damaged tissue which is then suctioned out. 

Other things that people can do is watch their weight. Extra pounds can cause extra stress on the feet. They also need to change any athletic shoes that are worn out since they provide no support whatsoever to the feet. They could also do low-impact sports like swimming or biking since neither of those have any impact on the feet, 

Ultimately, this is something that goes away with rest, but there are some people who require surgery. Athletes can have continual problems. NBA player Tyreke Evans lost an entire season due to it in 2011 - it can make running and jumping extremely painful and basketball is a sport predicated on those two. For the vast majority, they will be able to resume normal life. 

Dr. John J Hickey has been working with podiatry patients for many years at Levittown Podiatry and he has helped quite a few of them deal with plantar fasciitis- often without having to use any of the last options. If you feel like you have this and live in the Levittown area, give him a call at 516-735-4545.

Published by:

Levittown Podiatry

2870 Hempstead Tpke, Suite 103,

Levittown, New York 11756

Phone: (516) 735-4545