As we are walking around the house or walking outside, there sometimes is a situation where something sharp penetrates our foot. This could be a splinter, a carpet tack, a nail that goes through the shoe, anything that punctures the bottom of the foot. There is always a question of how serious is it and what do we do for it?

It is very serious, because the bones of the foot is not too distant from the skin. If a nail, for instance, punctures the shoe and goes into the foot, it could impact the bones in the foot as well. While a skin infection is bad enough, a bone infection is not something that we want to have to deal with.

If you find that you have stepped on something that has punctured your foot, you should take the following measures. First of all, call our office. We will see you right away and I'll be able to assess the wound, irrigate it and determine what is necessary. In almost every case, a course of antibiotics will be necessary. Sometimes, depending on what the material is that punctures, you may need a tetanus shot. How will you know if you need a tetanus shot? Typically, if you haven't received a tetanus shot in the past ten years, you will need one for a puncture wound.

Most importantly, we want to make sure that the puncture did not reach the bone. We will take an x-ray, look at the bones to make sure they are healthy and without injury, and use antibiotics to manage any possible infection.

These circumstances are magnified if you are diabetic. If someone is diabetic, it is a medical emergency for you to come and see us. Infections can set in quickly and we need to get on top of it. Simply contact the office by phone or through the website for an immediate appointment.

Dr. Andrew Schneider
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A podiatrist and foot surgeon in Houston, TX.