Whether you’re shuffling to the coffee maker in the morning, or sprinting to catch the train, you rely on your feet to make the trip. With 26 bones and over a 100 ligaments and muscles , your feet, ankles, and legs provide the foundational support you need to stand upright and move throughout the day. When foot pain strikes, a general practitioner can offer an initial assessment, but it is better to consult with a specialist in podiatry, also known as a foot doctor, as they can offer a more in-depth analysis on a wide array of foot issues.
What Is a Foot Doctor & What Do They Do?
A podiatrist is a medical practitioner or physician that is devoted to the diagnosis and treatment of the foot, ankle, and related structures in the lower leg. While some foot doctors do take on more specialized fellowship training to work in certain fields such as pediatrics, wound care, or sports medicine, all podiatrists must complete 4 years of training at a podiatric medical school. With years of clinical experience and examinations, a foot doctor will become board certified and be able to perform the following duties.
l Diagnose common foot issues like bunions, flat feet, nail/foot infections, heel pain, sprains/fractures, muscle pain, calluses and more.
l Use corrective medical applications to treat foot issues. This can include using flexible casts & orthotics (foot braces and insoles) to treat and heal injuries.
l Some podiatrists will specialize in foot surgery, gaining and exercising extensive knowledge with foot prosthetics & biomechanics, amputations, and repairing fractures or broken bones. They can also prescribe anti