What is the largest organ of the body? This is a famous medical school trivia question. The answer, surprisingly, is the skin! The skin, also known as the integument, includes hair and nails, known as skin appendages.
Changes of the skin can be suggestive of underlying medical conditions, as well as of vascular problems. Recognition of these signs can lead to further evaluation, treatment, and proper referrals.
Additionally, there are many conditions that affect the skin itself , well as the nails.
There are so many conditions affecting the nails that entire textbooks have been written about them. The most common affliction of the toenail is the ingrown toenail. This is also the most common condition that we treat in our practice. Ingrown nails can be due to injury, tight shoes, or improper trimming. Ingrown nails are easily treated in our office with a simple procedure. Other common conditions affecting the toenails are fungus infections, or onychomycosis, and chronic degenerative changes, known as onychauxis.
Skin rashes of all types affect foot and leg. These may be caused by fungus or bacterial infections, allergic reactions, exposure to irritating substances, and many other causes. Most can be easily diagnosed and treated.
Skin growths and tumors are common in the lower extremity. Although most are benign, skin cancers such as basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and malignant melanoma can affect the lower extremity, and their appearance is sometimes atypical. These skin cancers can be potentially serious and always require evaluation. The diagnosis of skin growths and tumors is usually based on simple biopsy procedures that we perform in the office under local anesthesia.
The doctors at Melbourne Podiatry Associates are experts in all dermatology of the foot, leg and ankle. Please call our office for appointment If you have any lower extremity conditions.