The Running Doctor: No matter season, never smart to run barefoot

Going barefoot, whether it’s in spring or summer or all year round, can cause a multitude of injuries.

Most injuries are seen in the summer months. Some of the most common barefoot injuries are lacerations and abrasions, as they relate to glass and sharp objects (such as seashells) on the beach.

If dirt or sand enters into the wound it can become painful and get infected. With deep lacerations, it may be necessary to get a tetanus injection or a few stitches, which will certainly slow you up and keep you out of the water during the summer months.

Those people diagnosed with diabetes are more prone to infection from a cut and have a more difficult time healing the infected wound. This is due to circulation of the lower extremities in the more advanced cases. If it’s a minor cut, the individual will be fine after the foreign body is removed and the wound is cleaned with antiseptic and topical antibiotic cream.

Sometimes, dry sterile dressings are helpful. But, if the wound is deep and bleeding doesn’t stop after 10-15 minutes with pressure applied, then it is time to seek emergency medical help.

Robert F. Weiss is a podiatrist specializing in foot and ankle surgery. He was a member of the Medical Advisory Committee of the 1984 and 1988 Olympic Marathon Trials. Weiss is a veteran of 35 Marathons & has a practice in Darien.