Welcome to Our Practice

Our physicians provide foot and ankle care in the Tri-County area including: Berkley, Southfield, Royal Oak, Oak Park, and Ferndale.

Drs. Hoffman, B. Kissel, C. Kissel, Schey, Ungar, and Weitzman provide quality, comprehensive foot and ankle care to patients in Berkley and the surrounding communities. Combined, they have over 100 years of experience in podiatry and a genuine concern for patients. In adddition, the NorthPointe Foot & Ankle staff is dedicated to promptly attending to your comfort and care.

This web site provides you with an overview of our practice and the field of podiatry. As you navigate the site, you'll find information about our practice philosophy, physicians, office location, insurance policies, and appointment scheduling procedures. Please browse the site at your convenience and contact us with any questions. You can also schedule an appointment by clicking here.

Should your care require surgical intervention, we are on staff at many area hospitals including:

Surgical Foot Correction - Visit our Educational Video Section

High Heel Stress

Holiday and New Year’s celebrations are occasions where we wear our finest fashions.  However, the desire to look good sometimes comes with the aches caused by high heeled shoes.

Many high heeled shoes for women have pointed toe boxes. The narrow toe box squeezes the toes and the heel height causes a shift in the body column that must be compensated for by the foot.  These issues generally cause aches and soreness of the feet and back, and can often result in sprains or other complications.

The doctors of NorthPointe Foot & Ankle have a few suggestions to share with anyone wearing high heels for special occasions:

  • Minimize the amount of time in the shoes.  Wear boots or other comfortable shoes on your way to the event and return to those comfortable shoes as you depart.
  • Place shoe pads in the inside of the shoes for added support and comfort for the ball of your foot.
  • Consider bringing “purse slippers” – or compact slippers – that are designed to fit in a small purse.  Slip those on as aches begin.
  •  A heel height of ¾ inch to ½ inch is usually well tolerated.
  • Consider shoes with an ankle strap or other ankle support to avoid sprains.

Standing barefoot, the falling line of body weight normally forms a perpendicular angle with floor. The body weight is distributed 50-50 between the heel and the forefoot. The moment any heel elevation is applied to the shoe, the normal 90 degree perpendicular of body weight is altered. The higher the heel the greater the body column change.

The muscles, ligaments and various body joints associated with the body column and foot system must make compensatory changes with the elevated heel. If these compensatory changes were not made by the body then the elevated heel would cause our body to fall forward. The toll on the body can lead to leg, back and foot aches.

With heels, increased bowing of the arch on the bottom of the foot can lead to a contraction or shortening of the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is the ligament that helps support the arch of the foot. Overtime the fascia can become vulnerable to strain or tearing when lower heels are worn or with aggressive walking or running. High heeled shoes may look very fashionable, but prolonged and extensive wear can lead to many disabling deformities ranging from low back pain to foot pain.

Our Office Can Test for Circulation Problems. It's Quick and Painless!

Do you experience leg pain while walking or exercising? This could be a sign of Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD). The most common symptom of PAD is a painful muscle cramping in the hips, thighs or calves when walking, climbing stairs, or exercising. The pain of PAD usually goes away when you stop exercising, although this may take a few minutes

NorthPointe is home to the PADnet machine which provides a pain-free screening for PAD. The test is run in the office and the results are read by our own experts. The results are then confidentially transferred over the Internet to a group of cardiologists for their review.

PAD is treatable. Make an appointment today at NorthPointe to get screened for PAD. It only takes 15 - 20 minutes.


Boot Buying Tips

It’s time to check last year’s boots for proper fit and examine their condition.  Chances are, it is time for a new pair.  When shopping for any footwear, keep in mind protection, support, and comfort, in addition to the style. The podiatrists of Northwest Podiatry have this boot selection advice to share:

  • Be sure boots are insulated and waterproof. Even if the boot maker says the boots are waterproof, still treat the pair with a waterproofing product. The body has to work harder to compensate for moisture, so try to minimize as much foot moisture as possible.
  • Select natural material, like leather, that allows proper airflow and keep feet dry.
  • Although rubber boots will keep you dry, rubber does not breathe.  Make sure that any rubber boots purchased are fully lined to help absorb foot moisture.
  • Boots with rigid shaped soles limit natural foot movement and provide little, if any, arch support.  Cushioned insoles and arch supports could be added.
  • The best traction is received from boots with a rubber sole and deep grooves.
  • Styles with narrow toes and high heels often cause pain and numbness.  Select a lower heel or stacked style for additional support.  Choose a style with plenty of toe room, a firm heel counter and traction to ensure stability.
  • To provide warmth, ski sock liners are a way to keep feet warmer without adding bulk.  Liners are worn under regular socks.
  • Above all – listen to your feet.  If a boot is not comfortable, the footwear selected is not the best.

Shopping tips:

  • Try boots on later in the day as feet tend to swell throughout the day.
  • Try the style on with the thickness of socks you expect to be wearing with the boot.
  • Most individuals have two different size feet.  Buy for the larger sized foot.
  • Boots should feel comfortable as you try them on.  No “breaking in” period should be necessary.