Achilles Foot Health Centre
HCPC Registered
The Socirty of Chiropodists & Podiatrists

Podiatry

For optimum foot & leg health for mobility and an active healthy life for all ages

Podiatry at Achilles Foot Health Centre treats a wide range of pain free or painful conditions that affect the feet and legs. These conditions may be local to the feet; or may be caused by, or the cause of problems some where else in the body. Health and disease in the body can affect the feet; and foot and leg health issues can have an impact on the general health.

How we can help

Our reputation is partly based around success with cases that have not responded to conventional treatment in the past. Our openess to different or alternative approaches to treatment can help.

A thorough assessment, history taking and diagnosis using a holistic / whole body approach is beneficial - identifying underlying issues that may be affecting the health of the feet, legs, gait and the symptoms or concerns that you have.

Paul de Haas, within his own podiatry practice, is known locally for his skills with the scalpel and a wide range of other instruments, which is often the first step to achieving high levels of comfort in the short, medium or long term; and the resolution or improvement of some skin lesions such as corns, ingrowing toenails.

This is combined with the use of a wide range of medicaments, treatment approaches, in clinic; and footcare products available to purchase to carry through treatment at home.

What can I expect at a visit?

On your first visit, after we have assessed general health, carried out a thorough foot and leg examination; we will identify and explain the issues that concern you / us, and agree what to focus on in particular. A treatment plan will be drawn up for the patient - whether it be yourself, your child, family member, or person you care for. This usually takes 5 to 10 minutes.

On your first visit, we will carry out your treatment as agreed, as a start to your treatment plan - when and if you need follow up.

We will advise on relevant foot conditions. If needed, care will be continued at subsequent visits where progress and the condition of the feet will be monitored and further treatment carried out as required.

How often will I need to come?

The frequency of visits is based your foot health needs.

You may be fortunate to have your concern treated and sorted in a single visit.

You may see us for a short course of treatment to resolve or improve an acute or long standing problem. If the condition is acute, there may be a need for quite frequent appointments until there is improvement.

You may choose or need to have regular visits of variable intervals for recurring problems to maintain your foot health, mobility and comfort. This could be from every 3 or 4 weeks to once every 6 months depending on the condition of the feet, your ability to care for your own feet, and the severity of foot health needs. Our average return interval is six to eight weeks, for clents with stable, healthy feet.

You may choose to visit on a 'when required' basis - once you and we are happy about your foot health.

Medical effects of health on the feet and legs

When the body's systems start to change because of age, deteriating health, disease or trauma - the effects on feet and legs can be quite significant. This can be due to the disease or trauma event or the side effects of the medication and treatment that is required.

We have experience of a wide range medical conditions that will affect the feet and are often able to help through assessment, treatment : including skilled scalpel work, medicaments, shoe inserts, orthoses, and targetted advice.

There are a wide range of medical conditions or the drugs used to treat them that may affect the feet. For more information please look at the Medical Effects page.

Ingrowing / Painful toenails - what can I expect?

When an ingrowing or painful toenail is giving trouble - we can help. There are many causes of pain around a toe nail.

First, we exam, assess and use our experience to work out the cause of the pain. We aim to minimise the liklihood of the patient needing a surgical procedure by establishing and treating the underlying cause using a short course of treatment - this approach is often successful in young children, teenagers, and adults, especially the 'at risk' patient. We will advise you on ways to help the recovery of the toe between visits.

However, in rare cases, where there is bacterial infection, with complications, that is not responding to conservative care and the toe remains painful, we will arrange for a minor operation using local analgesia to numb the toe. Only about 3% of painful toenail cases at Achilles Foot Health Centre need to go on to have surgery.

All instrument trays are sterilised within 3 hours for nail surgery work We have experience of carrying out the nail surgery procedures over a period of thirty years with an outcome measure of regrowths of less than 0.05% (less than 1 case per 200). We carry out one / two sides or total nail avulsion (depending on what is needed). We will follow up the toe/s operated on until they are healed.

Verrucae - What can I expect?

We have a success rate of at least 80-85% of feet are cleared of verruca/e in the long term.

When there has been a diagnosis of verrucae or warts at first visit, a course of treatment will be started. The person with the verruca/e (and the people caring for them - if patient is a child) will be given appropriate advice depending on the medical health status and lifestyle.

The follow up visits will carry through the treatment plan. each separate verruca needs to be treated, and monitored to check that they are fading. Sometimes they are difficult to treat regardless of which treatments are used. Success is measured in various ways. A course of treatment may last from a few weeks to over a year.

Sports Injury / Biomechanics - what can I expect?

When you contact us about an internal pain in the leg or foot; or a loss of function, we will take a full history, assess and aim to identify the cause.

We will check when booking your appointment that your need may include a musculo-skeletal assessment. We will aim to allocate a suitable appointment length to carry out the level of assessment you require. We will advise you appropriately to prepare you for your appointment.

After all other likely causes of your symptoms have been eliminated; a musculo-skeletal / biomechanic assessment may be used to find out any underlying causes.

We may measure ranges of joint movement, and reflexes, amongst other factors that affect the feet - as part of biomechanic assessment.

If you are found to have a musculo-skeletal condition, a course of treatment and rehabilitation will often be started at the end of your assessment appointment.

We aim to find the cause, reduce and resolve your symptoms, optimise functionality and prevent recurrence of the injury where ever possible - getting you on the path to recovery.

For more detail see our Sports Injury and Biomechanics pages.

Skin Problems in the foot and affecting the leg - reducing risks & taking away the embarrassment?

You may have been living with a skin problem within the foot a long time, that may or may not be painful and embarrassing. You may have seen a recent change in your skin, nails or the underlying tissues. It is wise to get it checked out. We have seen all sorts of problems over our many years of practice.

The most common fungal infections of the toe spaces, nail and skin can degrade the skins natural protective barrier role; opening up people to the risk of secondary bacterial infections, such as ingrowing toenails, septic toes, cellulitis of the foot and leg. It is wise to get the attention you need, as soon as possible.

Paul worked in a hospital and within the Regional Skin Unit over 30 years ago. Ever since, he has a long standing and wide interest in the effects of skin disease on the foot. He was a member of the Podiatric Dermatology Group and keeps upto date using the web and definitive text books.

There are many possible causes and our special interest in this important area of foot health will help identify the issues and start appropriate treatment.

We have wide experience of lots of skin problems including: itches and rashes, rashes between toes; dry or wet skin types, foot odour with or without soggy skin; distorted, discoloured or diseased nails; lesions - lumps and bumps on, in or under the skin, warts verrucae; deeply cracked and hard skin.

For more detail see our Skin Problems page.

Gait Analysis & Biomechanics - What are they?

Gait analysis is a way of looking at how the body moves and the likely consequences on the whole of the musculo-skeletal system including the feet and legs. It uses the principles of biomechanic assessment which is the measuring, analysis and interpretation of the motion of your musculo-skeletal system. The bony and muscular structure of our bodies is unique to each of us and can have effects on many aspects of our lives - affecting health, mobility, well being and independence. Some of us are fortunate to have a well designed and efficient locomotor system inherited through our genes; however, some people may not be so lucky. Even the best locomotor system can be injured, overused or affected by disease.

So, gait analysis and biomechanics, as tools, can be applied with benefit in any activity including country walking, hill walking, mountaineering, jogging. running, gym work, cycling, horse riding, any track or field sport, even playing an instrument, etc..

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