GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - We don't often pay a lot of attention to our feet -- until they start to hurt. But some, especially those with diabetes, need take extra care of them.
For many, a pedicure is a day a pampering. But for some, it's necessary for good health. "The results of not caring for the feet can be catastrophic,” said Dr. Michael David.
Dr. David is a podiatrist with Foot and Ankle Specialists of West Michigan. He knows that with diabetics especially infections can happen quickly and spread rapidly, “A simple corn or a callus in a diabetic can evolve into an open sore which can turn into an infection that can easily get into bone."
That's why they opened West Michigan's first medical nail salon.
Karen Paradiso says the pedicures go beyond pampering, with staff trained to care for those at risk of infection. "She's looking for any signs of a possible infection, she's looking for cuts that could turn into an infection, and she’s looking for discoloration on the nails."
And if something is found, Paradiso says care is literally around the corner. “There’s always a doctor right outside the door so if Molly sees anything of suspicion or concerning, she can step outside the door and have a physician take a look at it and we can elevate it to that next level."
Every pedicure tool is sanitized in an autoclave after each patient and individual bowls are used instead of traditional pedicure spas to further control exposure to bacteria.
"The patients that we see are at high risk for infections," says Paradiso.
Many times patients with diabetes and other conditions will lose a nail. The medical nail salon also provides a way to fix that with a process called Keryflex. "It's a breathable product, so when she applies it, your nail can still breath -- you can still use your anti-fungal medication."
For patient Catherin Geelhoed there are a few added benefits too. "I cannot get in and out of a chair in a regular spa." Catherine has neuropathy and complications from a car accident. "I like that there's privacy and parking is close by because walking is difficult."
The cost of the medical pedicures is about the same as a high end salon.
Click here for more information on the medical nail salon at the Foot and Ankle Specialists of West Michigan.
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