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Wednesday,May May28, 28,2014 2014--VICTORIA OAK BAY Wednesday,
Community Spotlight: SENIORS
Simple ingrown toenail can be a real risk Nate Clark News staff
Bruce Taylor has journeyed a long way just to get his toenails clipped. In fact, six times a year Taylor gets in his car and makes the two-and-a-half hour journey from Vancouver to Victoria, just to see his favourite foot doctor. This might seem extreme, but Taylor is fiercely loyal to his Victoria podiatrist, and for good reason. Years ago, after he sought treatment for a common foot problem, an infected toenail, he found himself in a position that could have eventually cost him his leg. “Bruce was on an I.V. of antibiotics,” says Dr. William Mirchoff, former president of the B.C. Association of Podiatrists, the Canadian Podiatric Medical Association, and miracle worker for seniors like Taylor. “Ninetynine per cent of the time they are going to give you antibiotics. But if you take the piece of nail out that’s causing the chronic infec-
Nate Clark/News intern
May 13, 2014. Bruce Taylor, left, has a laugh with his favourite podiatrist, Dr. William Mirchoff, during a routine checkup at Mirchoff’s Hillside Avenue office. tion, you shouldn’t need antibiotics. When someone is older, something as sim-
ple as an ingrown toenail can be a serious health risk if it’s not treated in a timely
correctly treated the problem, there was no question in Taylor’s mind that
fashion.” When Taylor finally connected with Mirchoff, who
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Mirchoff would be the only person coming near his feet any time soon. “I have neuropathy and it didn’t heal,” says Taylor. “When you’re older you might not have enough circulation for your feet to heal. You might end up having your leg taken off below the knee. Now I only come to this guy.” Taylor isn’t exaggerating. The neuropathy he’s talking about is a nerve condition common to the elderly, where areas of the body can become chronically numb. Any injuries or infections in those areas can be aggravated if not treated quickly. “Seniors can have callouses or ulcers that they aren’t aware of,” explains Mirchoff. “They can develop into infections that don’t heal properly. Then they are in danger of losing their foot, or their leg.” Serious stuff, yes, but it should also be noted here
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May 28, 2014 edition of the Oak Bay News