Podiatrists diagnose as well as treat both normal and more unusual skin and nail pathologies of the feet. Podiatrists enjoy an important role in maintaining the capability to move of numerous older and handicapped people, and others. This is achieved by the continuous tracking of foot health, in particular of those with circulation disorders and diabetes.
Podiatrists are identified as important members of the medical care workforce in reducing and managing lower limb difficulties for people living with diabetes.
A fundamental area of foot care carried out by podiatrists is the treatment of a variety of acute and chronic nail problems, the management of which depends upon the pathology.
Podiatrists possess specific instrumentation for pain-free and effective management of these problems. One example is the surgical correction of chronically ingrown toe nails under local anaesthesia is a common podiatric treatment.
The treatment and prevention of corns, calluses and warts are also typical podiatric treatments.
Podiatry and Childrens Feet
The childs foot is not really a small-scale model of an adult foot. Its shape is not ultimately determined until growth ceases at the end of the second decade of life. Podiatrists diagnose and treat childrens foot problems by careful examination of the foot, and lower limb, where essential.
Advice for the prevention or reduction of foot deformity which often occurs later in adult life might include the provision of suitable information on footwear, treatment by splinting, guidance on exercises and/or orthotic control of the feet. Podiatrists also treat common, chronic and acute issues of childrens feet such as osteochondroses, fasciitis and pes planus.
Orthoses are custom-made shoe inserts made especially to reduce a foot pathology. The prescription and production of orthoses is an important part of podiatric practice. Podiatrists are trained in the production approaches for a variety of shoe inserts. The majority of inserts fit into two primary groups functional orthoses or palliative orthoses.
Functional orthoses are prescribed after the biomechanical assessment and casting of the feet. They are made by various processes to align the structure of the foot in its most functionally effective position. The orthotic, moulded from the cast, is built to stabilize the foot and also to stop it from shifting into an out of balance position whilst walking or running.
These inserts involve a number of steps in both the diagnostic and production stages, and are generally made from a thermoplastic.
Palliative orthoses are made particularly to minimize pressure from painful or ulcerated areas of the foot. These are often softer and less complicated devices made of foam or rubbers. Palliative orthoses are often used for the treatment of severely deformed feet with a restricted flexibility and mobility. They are usually an appropriate option for seniors with significant soft-tissue atrophy and/or circulatory illness.
Podiatry and Surgery
Podiatrists are competent to conduct both nail as well as cutaneous surgical procedures, however some have undertaken additional training to undertake additional foot surgery.
Do I require a medical referral to visit a Podiatrist?
Most commonly it is not necessary to get a referral to visit a podiatrist. However, for patients to receive podiatry treatment within several programs including those run by Veterans Affairs, Workers Compensation, or the Program for Aids for Disabled People (PADP), a medical referral is required.
Private health insurance funds cover podiatry services within their ancillary tables.
Government-funded services are available in some public hospitals, community health centres as well as other publicly funded utilities.