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Glossary of Terms

SAS offers a large selection of men's and women's shoes, handbags, accessories, and more. In addition to this, we want to provide our customers with the best possible customer service. Part of providing this excellent service is to provide a "Glossary of Terms" as a reference guide for you to learn more about our company and our industry. We hope you find this guide useful. We would also love to hear from you. If you have a question or see a term used on our site that is not in this glossary, please contact us.

Specific Terms Associated With The Foot

  • Arch = The high, curved part of the sole of the foot, located between the ball of the foot and the heel. This term can also refer to the raised area of the insole of the shoe, which is meant to pad and provide support for the arch of the foot.
  • Ball = The padded area of the foot between the big toe and the arch of the foot.
  • Forefoot = The area of foot between the ball and the toes.
  • Gait = An individual's style of walking.
  • Girth = The circumference of a shoe last measured around the ball of the foot.
  • Heel = The rear padded area of the underside of the foot.
  • Instep = The upper, center section of the foot, between the toes and ankle.
  • Metatarsal Bones = Five long bones in the foot that help to move the body forward when walking or running. They form the top slope of the foot, from the instep to the toes.

Specific Feet Conditions

  • Achilles Tendon Injury = Pain in the back of the heel may suggest a problem with the Achilles tendon. The injury can be sudden or a nagging daily pain (tendinitis).
  • Athlete's Foot = A fungal infection of the feet, causing dry, flaking, red, and irritated skin. Daily washing and keeping the feet dry can prevent athlete's foot.
  • Bunions (hallux valgus) = A bony prominence next to the base of the big toe that may cause the big toe to turn inward. Bunions may occur in anyone, but are often caused by heredity or ill-fitting footwear.
  • Calluses = A buildup of tough skin over an area of frequent friction or pressure on the feet. Calluses usually develop on the balls of the feet or the heels and may be uncomfortable or painful.
  • Claw Toes = Abnormal contraction of the toe joints, causing a claw-like appearance. Claw toe can be painful and usually requires a change in footwear.
  • Corns = Like calluses, corns consist of excessive tough skin buildup at areas of excessive pressure on the feet. Corns typically have a cone shape with a point, and can be painful.
  • Diabetic Foot Infection = People with diabetes are vulnerable to infections of the foot, which can be more severe than they appear. People with diabetes should examine their feet daily for any injury or signs of developing infection such as redness, warmth, swelling, and pain.
  • Fallen Arches (flat feet) = The arches of the feet flatten during standing or walking, potentially causing other foot problems. Flat feet can be corrected with shoe inserts (orthotics).
  • Gout = An inflammatory condition in which crystals periodically deposit in joints, causing severe pain and swelling. The big toe is often affected by gout.
  • Heel Spurs = An abnormal growth of bone in the heel, which may cause severe pain during walking or standing. People with plantar fasciitis, flat feet, or high arches are more likely to develop heel spurs.
  • Ingrown Toenails = One or both sides of a toenail may grow into the skin. Ingrown toenails may be painful or lead to infections.
  • Mallet toes = The joint in the middle of a toe may become unable to straighten, causing the toe to point down. Irritation and other foot problems may develop without special footwear to accommodate the mallet toe.
  • Metatarsalgia = Pain and inflammation in the ball of the foot. Strenuous activity or ill-fitting shoes are the usual causes.
  • Morton's Neuroma = A growth consisting of nerve tissue often between the third and fourth toes. A neuroma may cause pain, numbness, and burning and often improves with a change in footwear.
  • Nail Fungal Infection (onychomycosis) = Fungus creates discoloration or a crumbling texture in the fingernails or toenails. Nail infections can be difficult to treat.
  • Osteoarthritis of the Foot = Age and wear and tear cause the cartilage in the foot to wear out. Pain, swelling, and deformity in the feet are symptoms of osteoarthritis.
  • Plantar Fasciitis = Inflammation in the plantar fascia ligament along the bottom of the foot. Pain in the heel and arch, worst in the morning, are symptoms.
  • Plantar Wart = A viral infection in the sole of the foot that can form a callus with a central dark spot. Plantar warts can be painful and difficult to treat.
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis = An autoimmune form of arthritis that causes inflammation and joint damage. Joints in the feet, ankle, and toes may be affected by rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Swollen Feet = A small amount of swelling in the feet can be normal after prolonged standing and common in people with varicose veins. Feet edema can also be a sign of heart, kidney, or liver problems.