Podiatrist Training And Certification
A podiatrist doctor is a specialized medical practice devoted to the diagnosis and treatment of ailments of the lower leg, foot, and ankle. The word originally came from North America but now has become the more accepted spelling for practitioners of podiatry in the English-speaking world. Though a podiatrist can take care of a wide variety of ailments in both feet and legs, the specialty of podiatry covers a very specific set of ailments.
A podiatrist can specialize in any of several fields
including sports medicine, orthopedics, geriatrics, neurology, military medicine, pediatrics, physical therapy, and chiropractic medicine among others. A podiatrist performs diagnostic, therapeutic, and reconstructive surgical procedures. Their primary tools are x-rays, computerized tomography, and ultrasound technology, which enable them to diagnose and assess patients’ health and provide therapies that help them treat their ailments. Podiatrists also employ other diagnostic tools, such as magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography.
arthritis, muscle pain, fractures, dislocations, strains, sprains, and injuries to other parts of the body are some of the typical ailments treated by a podiatrist. Injuries to the lower legs usually involve a fracture of the tibia or shinbone. The cause of this type of injury is often due to overexertion caused by a sportsperson, a sudden stop from running, or a fall. Other common causes include wearing ill-fitting footwear, high heels, obesity, and diabetes. Treatment may include custom orthotics, temporary use of splints, and rest for the injured part of the body.
Heel and ankle surgery is another specialty of a podiatrist.
These types of surgery involve the splitting of the ligaments between the heel and ankle to repair damage to the ligament. When foot surgery is performed by a podiatrist, orthotics, physical therapy, and rehabilitation are usually used in combination.
Some people have flat-feet
which means that their feet do not have an arch. This condition is called flat foot and is typically caused by an injury to the plantar fascia, which links the heel to the arch. The podiatrist may need to determine if the patient has nerve damage associated with flat feet. He may also need to perform arthroscopic surgery on the plantar fascia.
The requirements to become a podiatrist
are rigorous and require four years of graduate school and four years of practicing medicine. Podiatry doctors must also complete a four-year internship during which time they obtain extensive clinical experience under the supervision of an experienced physician. There are very few medical schools that offer a specialized degree in podiatry, but many universities do. The United States Department of Health Education Services offers a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine degree, as does the American Podiatric Medical Association. Candidates for these positions must pass a written examination and a background investigation.