We use our feet so often that it's easy to take them for granted. But podiatrists, or foot doctors, are well-acquainted with the functions of the feet and the best ways to keep them healthy. At Family Foot & Ankle Care in Chandler, AZ, we have a team of podiatrists that help our patients achieve optimal foot health each day. Dr. Alan Discont, Dr. Gregory Krahn, and Dr. Boyd Andrews have answered a few questions about the nature of their medical specialty here.
What kind of schooling does a podiatrist need?
Most podiatrists, including those on staff at Family Foot & Ankle Care, have the letters "DPM" behind their name; this stands for Doctor of Podiatric Medicine. There are a select few medical schools in the country that are fully accredited by the Council on Podiatric Medical Education. Beyond the four years of undergraduate schooling, podiatrists need about four years of medical school in addition to a residency, or in-house training, to become certified. Our podiatrists also participate in seminars and other educational opportunities to stay up-to-date on the latest practices, procedures, and products.
What do podiatrists treat?
The short answer: a lot! The feet are complicated structures, made up of 26 bones and dozens of tendons, ligaments and muscles, and podiatrists like Dr. Discont, Dr. Andrews, and Dr. Krahn in Chandler deal with the multitude of problems that can come with these structures. Podiatrists also treat disorders that affect the ankles, such as sprains, and the toenails, which can become afflicted with fungal infections, and help their patients make the best decisions for orthopedic shoes and shoe inserts.
How often do I need to see a podiatrist?
Many people ignore developing foot problems until they are very uncomfortable, so it's important to contact our podiatrists for an evaluation of any ongoing pain, itching, or irritation associated with your feet and toes. Patients with diabetes, who can experience complications with their disease that affect the feet, should see their podiatrist at least once a year. Those who have had previous issues with foot wounds or nerve damage should make every effort to visit their podiatrist every three to six months.
To schedule your appointment with one of the members of our podiatry team, contact Family Foot & Ankle Care in Chandler, AZ today!