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What is a Podiatrist

A podiatrist, also called a doctor of podiatric medicine, is a specialist who provides medical diagnosis and treatment of foot and ankle problems, such as bunions, heel pain, spurs, hammertoes, neuromas, ingrown toenails, corns, warts and calluses. A podiatrist also renders care of sprains, fractures, infections, and injuries of the heel, foot and ankle.


Basing on the American Podiatric Medical Associations data, there are an estimated 15,000 practicing podiatrists in the United States. Because of a rapidly aging population, podiatrists are in demand more than ever today. In addition, according to the association, foot disorders are among the most widespread and neglected health problems affecting people in this country.

Typically, podiatrists:.

  • Consult with patients and other physicians on how to prevent foot problems.
  • Diagnose and treat tumors, ulcers, fractures, skin and nail diseases, and deformities.
  • Perform surgeries to correct or remedy such problems as bunions, clawtoes, fractures, hammertoes, infections, and injuries to ligaments and tendons.
  • Prescribe therapies and perform diagnostic procedures such as ultrasound and lab tests.
  • Prescribe or fits patients with inserts called orthotics that correct walking patterns.
  • Treat conditions such as: bone disorders, bunions, corns, calluses, cysts, heel spurs, infections, ingrown nails, and plantar fasciitis.