Medical House Call: Foot health

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - When you consider your overall health you may be forgetting one thing... Or two..

" Foot health is often neglected," said John Kosko, orthopedic specialist at Southern Bone and Joint.

Kosko, orthopedic surgeon with southern bone and joint in Hattiesburg, said people often don't think of their feet until there's pain. That's where his skills are needed.

"What I saw was a large percentage of people who has a great need and no one who was taking much interest in treating it," said Kosko.

For four years, Kosko has treated with problems below the knee. Besides his work with ankles he sees everything from plantar fasciitis, to various forms of arthritis.

" There 28 bones in the foot which means there are dozens of joints between these bones anywhere there are joints between bones that have cartilage on them the cartilage can wear and tear with time and that's what arthritis is."

Kosko also said there were some tips for arthritus.

"Good supportive shoes that protect the joints and medication is often helpful, arch support is often very helpful. Certain forms of foot arthritis again are very easily corrected with surgery."

Kosko says plantar fasciitis is a a thicken in inflammation of a big ligament that runs along the bottom of the foot to help support the arch. He says he sees it in nurses and school teachers people who are on their feet a lot.

" it usually hurts right were that ligament attaches to the heel bone on the bottom of the foot " me: how do you treat it? Typically with stretching. Stretching is the most important thing, to stretch out your calf muscle, your Achilles' tendon, and all of the ligaments about the ankle. "

Another foot problem is bunions.

" what happens in a person who has a bunion is that this none begins to angle off to the side and then in order to fit in their shoe this joint has to sublux so that it points back there. And what makes the bump is actually a normal bone that is abnormally sticking out to the side ."

You may have been told bunions are caused my bad shoes, or you ladies may have been told high heels causes them.. Good news, girls Kosko says that's not true ..

"It is true that shoes or I'll fitting shoes make your bunions hurt, but bunions themselves are caused my genetics."

If you want to avoid surgery, Kosko says wear shoes that fit well, shoes  with a wide toe box. But sometimes surgery is necessary, here is a before and after picture of one of kosko's patients. Kosko says it may be time for surgery if you have these issues.

If it hurts you every single day, if it makes you hurt at night after your day is over,  then that may be a time to do something . "