There is a very real sense of urgency when you’ve got problems with your foot or ankle. While a hand or arm injury may be painful, you still have basic mobility to move around. But once you’ve injured your foot, you’ve got to hobble throughout your day.
So which medical professionals should you see?
What types of doctors treat foot and ankle ailments?
Foot pain sufferers could visit a podiatrist, a podiatric surgeon, or an orthopedic surgeon
A podiatrist generally targets the feet, ankles, and lower leg region, and could specialize in areas such as sports medicine, elder care, children, and biomechanical arenas. For minor issues, podiatrists could perform surgery in the office, within a short time period. If your complaint is for corns, warts, or callus removal, a podiatrist could be an ideal choice without having to visit a specialist.
If the podiatrist believes a referral is necessary due to the nature of your problem, you have the option to see a podiatric surgeon. A classic example would be in the case of broken bones.
Podiatric surgeons primarily center their profession on surgical procedures directly involving the lower leg’s extremities. Consequently, broken bones will need to be escalated to this field for best results.
In contrast, orthopedic surgeons tend towards the complete musculoskeletal system of the human body, not only the feet and ankles. A patient that has multiple foot and ankle problems which extend well beyond the lower leg may be sent to an orthopedic surgeon for a more complete treatment regimen.
How many years of practical experience does the doctor have?
Along with years of experience, you could learn which certifications were earned, and which qualifications were obtained. Educational background paints a more complete picture to base your decisions upon. Perhaps the length of time for experience is a bit more realistic for you to review, merely because nothing beats hands-on training.
Where does the doctor practice?
For example, the location of an office or hospital close to your children’s school could be a significant determining factor. Choose a doctor that can be easily integrated into your modernized daily schedule. With the intense activity of today’s families, having a foot and ankle doctor that is easy to get to will mean less stress and aggravation, which could go a long way towards helping you get well soon.
Deciding who to see for foot and ankle problems is not an insurmountable task. With careful research, you can swiftly select a medical care provider that will give you the highest probability for the quickest recovery.