Foot & ankle specialists: podiatrist vs. podiatrician?

March 16, 2010 —

If you’re looking for a physician to treat problems of the foot and ankle, such as a recurring corn/callus, hammertoe/bunion deformity, ankle instability/sprains, flat feet/heel pain, foot ulcers, ingrown toenails or any other foot problems, you must be looking for a podiatrist. I have only heard the term “podiatrician” used once and I believe it was used to inaccurately to describe a foot specialist. Often times the term podiatrist can be confused with pediatrician but the two are completely different. Pediatricians work with children and the root word, “ped” refers to “child” while the root word “pod” refers to foot. To make it even more confusing, there are podopediatric specialists who work on the foot of children.

I find it much clearer to describe podiatrists as foot and ankle specialists without causing too much confusion. Currently, both terms are still used and our professional degree is doctor of podiatric medicine, or D.P.M.

I hope this clears up any confusion regarding the two profession. Do you have any other questions regarding the podiatric profession?


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