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Patient Education

What is a Podiatrist?
A Podiatrist, Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (DPM), is the only health care professional whose total training focuses on the leg, ankle, foot...

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Patient Education

What is a Podiatrist?
A Podiatrist, Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (DPM), is the only health care professional whose total training focuses on the leg, ankle, foot and related body systems. After receiving a bachelor's degree, the podiatric doctor spends four years in a medical school for podiatric medicine to obtain a doctorate degree. Following medical school, Podiatrists begin a residency program at an approved U.S. hospital. Residency programs are an additional 1-4 years of training in medicine, surgery, orthopedics, wound care, and Pediatrics.


Podiatrists must pass national and state examinations in order to be licensed by the state in which he or she will practice. If your podiatric surgeon is certified by one of the national certification boards in Podiatric Surgery, he or she has successfully completed an additional credentialing and examination process and has demonstrated knowledge of podiatric surgery. This includes the diagnosis of general medical problems and surgical management of foot diseases, deformities, and trauma of the foot, ankle and related structures. The podiatric physician cares for people of all ages. Common disorders of feet include bunions, heel pain/spurs, hammertoes, neuromas, ingrown toenails, warts, corns, calluses, sprains, fractures, infections, wounds, and injuries.


Some Terms to Know

Ankle Sprains - Ankle sprains are caused by an unnatural twisting or force on the ankle bones of the foot, often resulting in one or more ligaments on the outside of the ankle to be stretched or torn. If not properly treated, ankle sprains could develop into long-term problems.


Athlete's Foot - A chronic infection caused by various types of fungus, Athlete's foot is often spread in places where people go barefoot such as public showers or swimming pools.


Bunions Bunions - are misaligned big toe joints that can become swollen and tender, causing the first joint of the big toe to slant outward, and the second joint to angle toward the other toes.


Corns - Corns and calluses are protective layers of compacted, dead skin cells. They are caused by repeated friction from skin rubbing against bony areas or against an irregularity in a shoe. Corns ordinarily form on the toes and calluses on the soles of the feet.


Diabetes and Your Feet - With a diabetic foot, a wound as small as a blister from wearing a shoe that's too tight can cause a lot of damage. Diabetes decreases blood flow, so injuries are slow to heal.


Flat Feet - Flat feet are a common condition. In infants and toddlers, the longitudinal arch is not developed and flat feet are normal. The arch develops in childhood, and by adulthood, most people have developed normal arches.


Hammertoes - Hammertoe is a deformity of the second, third or fourth toes. In this condition, the toe is bent at the middle joint, resembling a hammer. Left untreated, hammertoes can become inflexible and require surgery.


Heel Spurs - Plantar fasciitis (or heel pain) is commonly traced to an inflammation on the bottom of the foot. Our practice can evaluate arch pain, and may prescribe customized shoe inserts called orthoses to help alleviate the pain.


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