Author Archive

Exercising in Hot Weather

July 22nd, 2016 by Dr.Chang


Beat the Heat!

How heat affects your body
Exercising in hot weather puts extra stress on your body. If you don’t take care when exercising in the heat, you risk serious illness. Both the exercise itself and the air temperature increase your core body temperature.

To help cool itself, your body sends more blood to circulate through your skin. This leaves less blood for your muscles, which in turn increases your heart rate. If the humidity also is high, your body faces added stress because sweat doesn’t readily evaporate from your skin. That pushes your body temperature even higher.

Heat-related illness
Under normal conditions, your skin, blood vessels and perspiration level adjust to the heat. But these natural cooling systems may fail if you’re exposed to high temperatures and humidity for too long.
Symptoms of heat related illness:
  • Heat cramps. Heat cramps are painful muscle contractions.  Your body temperature may be normal.
  • Heat syncope and exercise-associated collapse. Heat syncope is a feeling of lightheadedness or fainting caused by high temperatures, often occurring after standing for a long period of time, or standing quickly after sitting for a long period of time. Exercise-associated collapse is feeling lightheaded or fainting immediately after exercising.
  • Heat exhaustion. With heat exhaustion, your body temperature rises as high as 104 F (40 C), and you may experience signs and symptoms including nausea, vomiting, headache, weakness, and cold, clammy skin. If left untreated, this can lead to heatstroke.
  • Heatstroke. Heatstroke is a life-threatening emergency condition that occurs when your body temperature is greater than 104 F (40 C). Your skin may be hot, but your body may stop sweating to help cool itself. If your heatstroke occurs during exercise in hot, humid weather, you may continue to sweat for a short time after exercising.If you develop signs and symptoms including confusion, irritability, heart rhythm problems, dizziness, nausea, visual problems and fatigue. You need immediate medical attention to prevent brain damage, organ failure or even death.
  • When you exercise in hot weather, keep these precautions in mind:

    • Watch the temperature
    • Get acclimated
    • Know your fitness level
    • Drink plenty of fluids
    • Dress appropriately
    • Avoid midday sun
    • Wear sunscreen
    • If you plan to exercise over an hour, consider a sports drink instead of water. Sports drinks can replace the electrolytes you lose through sweating.

    Exercising in the heat can improve your fitness level. Heat-related illnesses are generally preventable by taking a few basic precautions.  Be mindful of your body and stop exercising if you begin to have symptoms of heat-related illness.  Pace yourself, allow your body to acclimate to the hot temperatures, and always drink plenty of  fluids before and after you exercise.

  • Posted in Uncategorized
  • Comments Off on Exercising in Hot Weather

Toenail Fungus

July 15th, 2016 by Dr.Chang

What Causes Toenail Fungus?
Bare feet in damp places are particularly susceptible to coming in contact with fungi, but the excessive perspiration that happens inside of a shoe during workouts can also create the same kind of environment. Therefore, frequent time spent in the pool or at the gym is often cited as the cause for fungal infections in the toenails.
In some cases, the fungus is contracted because of an initial injury to the nail bed. Even something as simple as a stubbed toe or an ingrown toenail can make the area more susceptible to the development of a toenail fungus.
What is Toenail Fungus & How will I know if I Have it?
Toenail fungus is an infection beneath the surface of the nail. It can be present on a toe for years without producing noticeable pain, but usually changes to the color and quality of the nail are the first indicators of its presence. The timing and severity of symptoms vary from patient to patient, but generally include:
  • darkening/discoloration of the affected nail
  • a foul smell from the nail
  • thickening of the nail
  • white marks on the nail plate
  • redness and swelling
  • spreading of the infected area
  • pain when walking or wearing shoes
If you’ve noticed a progressive change in a toenail’s color or thickness, make an appointment with your doctor to have it checked. A variety of conditions many cause thick, or discolored toenails, including psoriasis, diabetes, trauma, and constant nail polishing. If your doctor is not sure of the cause, she/he may choose to take a sample of the nail and have a fungal stain done at the lab, this will confirm whether the nail is fungal.
There are treatments available for nail fungus,  including oral medication, topical treatments and laser treatments your doctor will help you decide what is best for you.

Whatever treatment you choose, take these precautions to prevent recurrences:

  • Keep your feet as clean and dry as possible
  • Wear waterproof sandals at swimming pools or other wet public areas
  • Change your socks or hose daily
  • Clip toenails straight across and keep them shorter than the tips of your toes
  • Avoid tight hosiery, which promotes moisture retention, and wear synthetic fabric socks that wick moisture away from feet better than cotton or wool

At Blue Ridge Foot and Ankle Clinic, we pride ourselves in offering advanced treatment options and research-based medical solutions for fungal toenails and all foot and ankle conditions. If you would like more information or feel you may benefit from our services, please contact the office to learn more or schedule an appointment

Happy 4th of July

June 27th, 2016 by Dr.Chang


Happy July 4th! Here is a link to some fun events going on in Virginia over the holiday weekend.

Summer Rx: Beware of Barefoot Hazards

June 24th, 2016 by Dr.Chang



With July 4th around the corner we are spending more time outdoors. The pool, beaches, and even your own backyard can put your feet at risk of injury. Here are some reasons not to ditch your shoes this summer.

  1. Puncture Wounds / Trauma:  Cuts, scrapes, and sharp objects like rusty nails or broken shells cause breaks in the skin and set you up for serious bacterial or viral infections.
  2. Skin Burns:  Sidewalks, sand, and driveways can get very hot and burn the skin on the bottom of the foot. This is especially a risk for diabetic patients or patients with neuropathy who may not have the ability to feel warm temperatures or sharp sensations.  Never walk or run on a hot surface without footwear.
  3. Infections: Pools, hot tubs, saunas and public showers can harbor bacteria, viruses, warts and fungus. Protect your feet with pool shoes or flip-flops.                                                                                                                            Have a fun and safe summer and remember to use appropriate footwear  for your activities


We are humbled and honored to be on the ‪#‎ballot‬ this year for ‪#‎Best‬ ‪#‎Podiatrist‬ ‪#‎Charlottesville‬.  Voting is open till 22 June.

Thanks to all our patients who continue to support and appreciate our office.  You all make us all enjoy what we do everyday.…/…/HealthampBeauty


Rio Road Intersection

The long anticipated excavation construction project at the 29N / Rio Rd intersection is a few weeks away.  This may impact travel for our patients traveling and using Route 29 to access our office.   We encourage our patients to look at information from VDOT below and leave extra time for travel to our office.

Here is a helpful diagram to describe the expectations for traffic flow in and around the 29N / Rio Rd intersection during construction.

Getting around map Rt 29 North summer 2016


Here is a traffic advisory notice issued by VDOT regarding this phase of road construction.

Traffic hotspots Rt 29 North Summer 2016


Here is live traffic info:   Route 29 Solutions Live Traffic Info


Thank you in advance for your patience.  Our office ready and prepared to assist in any way possible.



Blue Ridge Foot and Ankle Clinic

887 A Rio East Court Charlottesville, VA 22901
66 Parkway Lane Fishersville, VA 22939

  • Posted in Uncategorized
  • Comments Off on Traffic Alert for our Patients: Leave extra travel time to office for Rt 29 North construction delays

Foot Injury: Tips and pointers.

April 27th, 2016 by Dr.Chang


Here is the latest copy of the APMA Newsletter “Footprints”. Focus on Foot Injury: Identification, management and protection tips from future injury.

APMA Footprints April 2016 Newsletter

Elaine Allen, DPM joins Blue Ridge Foot and Ankle Clinic
Elaine Allen, DPM joins Blue Ridge Foot and Ankle Clinic

Blue Ridge Foot and Ankle Clinic is pleased to announce Dr. Elaine Allen will be joining our practice. Dr. Allen is Board Certified in Foot Surgery by the American Board of Foot and Ankle Surgery. Dr.  Allen has been actively practicing podiatry and foot & ankle surgery in Virginia and Georgia for 8 years.  She will be seeing patients in our newly built Fishersville office beginning September 14, 2015.

Call our Fishersville office at (540) 949-5150 or schedule and appointment online at Schedule Appointment to consult with Dr Allen on your foot and ankle injury or concern.


Shortly after my last blog, I returned the Bondi 3s. They were the most comfortable shoes I’ve ever run in, but the soles were over half worn at only 50ish miles.  That makes the Bondi 3s, in my opinion, a very expensive pair of slippers.

I brought the a pair of Hoka Stinson Lites home and so far I am very pleased. Although the cushion seems less than in the Bondi 3s, the rubber compound seems much more durable. Going into the warmer months, I also like the very vented upper. This model comes with two inserts. The thicker one adds just a little more support and cushion, which feels very good in these shoes.


The warmer the days get, the less I run and the more I bike. However, my knees are still pain free and my pace continues to drop. I am very happy with the Hoka brand and the customer service I experienced at Ragged Mountain Running Shop.

-Mark Smith


Blue Ridge Foot and Ankle Clinic



887 A Rio East Court Charlottesville, VA 22901


 417 South Magnolia AveWaynesboro, VA 22980


New office in Fishersville will open early 2015 @

66 Parkway Lane Suite #102

Fishersville, VA 22939

Blue Ridge Foot and Ankle Clinic has been a part of the Waynesboro and Charlottesville communities for over 20 years. Podiatrists Dr. Kevin Murray and Dr. Stewart Chang offer services in sports podiatry, foot and ankle problems and diabetic foot care. Our friendly, accommodating team of Certified Podiatric Medical Assistants look forward to welcoming you to our practice.


HOKA ONE ONE Bondi 3 Shoes


I want to give you my take on the Hoka Bondie 3 shoes I purchased from Ragged Mountain Running shop a couple weeks ago.  I have a very broad background in running. In high school, I made the All American Track and Field team, competed at the Kinney Cross Country National meet (known now as Foot Locker Nationals), and attended college on a full scholarship.  However, after injuries and many years away from any kind of training, my return to running has proven to be difficult and painful. My runs now are not much more than a jog.

I’ve been trying to implement running as a supplement to my cycling training for months now. Knee pain, however, has crushed my motivation to do so. This winter’s cold and snowy weather has been brutal on my cycling training.  Riding a bike in 20+ degree weather against the cold wind, well, just ruins the fun of biking for me. The answer, put my running shoes on and suffer through the pain.

I’ve read and heard great things about the HOKA shoes. I also learned they are not cheap, $130.00+. I really wanted to try a pair, but thought it would be a waste of money. How could a shoe make that much of a difference? Maybe people are writing positive reviews to help justify to themselves the amount of money they spent. After a couple months, I had to try something.

Walking around the shop in several different models of the Hoka brand, I felt what many people had written about in their reviews. Walking on a cloud is the best way to put it.  I thought, this is neat, but I’m not sold and it seems gimmicky. Do I really want to spend money on these?

I should also mention, my first answer to my knee pain was to not run on the pavement. Throughout my running career, I ran on grass and gravel to stay away from injuries. However, these days I find myself lazy and only finding the motivation to run straight from my house where the only option is pavement.  I need lots of cushion and the Bondi 3s seems like a good gamble.

My first run in the Hoka far exceeded my expectations.  I only had time for a couple miles, but that’s all it took for me to fall in love with these shoes. I had no knee pain the first day, nor the following several days.  I’ve been running almost every day now for two weeks and my legs, although tired, are still pain free. This experience couldn’t have come at a better time. The several inches of snow recently have kept me off the bike, but not out of my Hokas.

20150219_221431I will follow up with this post over the next few months to let you know how the Bodi 3s perform. The only possible issue I see so far is that the mid foot area of the bottom sole seems to have a very soft compound rubber and therefore, may not be very durable.

Mark Smith



To request an appointment, please fill out the form below. Our scheduling coordinator will contact you to confirm your appointment.


Please leave this field empty.

Join Our Mailing List:

Enter your E-mail in the box below:

Our Affiliations

Monticello Community Surgery Center

Augusta Health

Martha Jefferson