What is the difference between a Pedorthist and a Podiatrist?
Pedorthists are technicians (combination of academic and technical training) who specialize in manufacturing, fitting, and modifying foot appliances (orthotics) and footwear for the purposes of alleviating painful or debilitating conditions of the lower limb. Certified pedorthists’ services are available only by prescription from a qualified health care professional.
Podiatrists are physicians and surgeons. Having completed college, podiatric medical school, and a post-doctoral residency, podiatric physicians specialize in diagnosing, treating, and preventing a variety of foot and ankle conditions. Many podiatrists prescribe and dispense foot orthoses directly from their practice and are experts in offering complete foot health care.
Who may benefit from podiatric services?
Anyone may see a podiatrist for any foot care ailment.
When Should You Call to See a Podiatrist?
If any of the following occur, please schedule to be seen by a podiatrist:
- Persistent pain in feet and ankles
- Noticeable changes to the skin and nails
- Feet are severely cracked, scaling or peeling
- Blisters noted on the feet
- Open wounds or ulcerations
- If you are Diabetic or with certain diseases that affect circulation
- Toenail is getting thicker or causing discomfort in shoe gear
Any signs of infections including but not limited to:
- Increased pain
- Red streaks through t he skin
- Discharge of pus
- Fever of 100 degrees or higher
- Spreading of infection to other areas
- No sign of improvement after two weeks of non medical treatment
What Should I Expect On My First Visit?
When you first visit your podiatrist, you may be given a thorough medical evaluation to diagnose your foot problem. The podiatrist takes your medical history, conducts a physical exam, and performs tests as needed.
Once a diagnosis is made, your podiatrist develops a treatment plan designed to relieve your discomfort or correct the foot problem. Your treatment may include a variety of nonsurgical and surgical techniques. Your podiatrist can also give you helpful tips for avoiding foot problems in the future.
How are services billed?
For most podiatric services, the doctor will simply bill your insurance. Sometimes, there may be a co-pay or out of pocket expenses. You may want to ask your chosen podiatrist how to handle this when you call to make an appointment. Cash pay is usually acceptable. Medicare covers many podiatric visits and services.
Does your office take walk-ins?
Not usually, but we always try to accommodate emergency or patients in need of urgent treatment. The individual time and attention that we provide to each patient requires an appointment.
Do women have more foot problems than men?
Women have about four times as many foot problems as men; lifelong patterns of wearing high heels are often the culprit.
How should toenails be trimmed?
Trim your toenails straight across with clippers specially designed for the purpose. Leave them slightly longer than the tips of your toes.
What exercise is safe for your feet and good for your overall health?
Walking is the best exercise for your feet. It also contributes to your general health by improving circulation, contributing to weight control and promoting all-around well being.
Can serious medical problems first show up in the feet?
Your feet mirror your general health. Such conditions as arthritis, diabetes, nerve and circulatory disorders, can show their initial symptoms in the feet, so foot ailments can be your first sign of more serious medical problems.
Are you born with foot problems or do they develop later?
According to the American Podiatric Medical Association, only a small percentage of the population is born with a foot problem. Neglect, lack of awareness, and/or lack of proper care—including ill-fitting shoes—cause many foot conditions.
How many bones are in a foot?
The foot contains 26 bones, 33 joints, 107 ligaments and 19 muscles.
Can you take x-rays in your office?
Yes. Our digital x-ray system makes images produced in one office instantly available at all three.