Welcome to the Podiatry Arena forums

You are currently viewing our podiatry forum as a guest which gives you limited access to view all podiatry discussions and access our other features. By joining our free global community of Podiatrists and other interested foot health care professionals you will have access to post podiatry topics (answer and ask questions), communicate privately with other members, upload content, view attachments, receive a weekly email update of new discussions, access other special features. Registered users do not get displayed the advertisements in posted messages. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our global Podiatry community today!

  1. Everything that you are ever going to want to know about running shoes: Running Shoes Boot Camp Online, for taking it to the next level? See here for more.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Have you considered the Critical Thinking and Skeptical Boot Camp, for taking it to the next level? See here for more.
    Dismiss Notice
  3. Have you considered the Clinical Biomechanics Boot Camp Online, for taking it to the next level? See here for more.
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Have you considered the Clinical Biomechanics Boot Camp Online, for taking it to the next level? See here for more.
Dismiss Notice
Have you liked us on Facebook to get our updates? Please do. Click here for our Facebook page.
Dismiss Notice
Do you get the weekly newsletter that Podiatry Arena sends out to update everybody? If not, click here to organise this.

Help me understand podiatry!!!

Discussion in 'General Issues and Discussion Forum' started by HappyBigFoot, Jan 30, 2006.

  1. HappyBigFoot

    HappyBigFoot Member

    Members do not see these Ads. Sign Up.
    Are we fooling ourselves that we are in demand? There are so many questions that podiatry has to answer to itself before demanding recognition.

    For instance, how can we make podiatry independent from the federal government? Medicare cuts would hit podiatrists more than any other medical specialty. And all private insurance companies will be happy to follow Medicare's steps. How about all this "podiatric fraud" propaganda? (the government is only looking to hire more podiatrists-auditors to investigate their counterparts). Is there a way for podiatrists to convince the world that podiatry is not a redundant medical profession and that it is ok to pay out-of-pocket for podiatric services? If every woman who comes to a beautician to do her pedicure is willing to pay for it, why do not our patients want to pay for the far more vital services? Podiatry has to change the way it is perceived in our society, otherwise, I am afraid, it will not be there in 10-15 years.

    An excellent link! Read the TRUTH about podiatry at (especially those of you who are just thinking about getting into podiatry):

    Check this out (a proposed Diabetic Foot Complication and Lower Extremity Amputation Reduction Act of 2005 promising $25,000,000 a year (Introduced in House)) Is this likely to go through/is there any logic in what the feds are doing :)?:

    "Podiatry" business is in many instances unethical and dishonest (at least from what I have seen) from the start, from the time they recruit new students to enroll into podiatry schools till the time they do unnecessary surgeries because they need to make a living. The residencies are also run in a verry sloppy manner! I have known many people who have been abused by the system. Here is my own recent example. I am currently in my third year of residency (I did 2 years of primary care through NYCPM and now doing my surgical residency in the deep South). In the middle of June'05, 2 weeks before the start of my surgical year, NYCPM broke the news that they lost their primary care positions (which they knew about in March) and decided to move their RPR residents into the surgical spots. They did not care that I had a signed PSR-12 contract, they just said that they applied for some additional spots with the CPME and I should wait and see what happens. At that time I still thought that at least the Council on Podiatric Medical Education could help me through this mess. I wish... They were as sensitive as a brick! I told CPME that not only my position was given to a junior NYCPM graduate (I graduated from OCPM), but another surgical position through NYCPM was given away to a resident coming from PA (who certainly never interviewed for a surgical program with NYCPM). CPME told me that they do not get involved in this sort of stuff and that I had to file a formal complaint. NYCPM offered me to repeat an RPR year and "promised" a surgical position the following year! I thought that it was enough humiliation at that point. At the beginning of July I was looking for other positions in the area (I met a couple of jorks but those positions did not work out anyway). Meanwhile, I had a brand new apartment lease in Brooklyn, my wife had a job in Manhattan, we had childcare arrangements for our 2-year old son, etc Before the news, I kept confirming and re-confirming that I had a position and NYCPM was well aware of all my circumstances. It turned out that there were several other people in my situation but in other hospitals, the fact that NYCPM wanted to keep down (they made it sound like it was an accident). In the middle of July I found out that a program down South lost a resident.═ We just moved to Brooklyn and basically had to move again >1,000 miles in a matter of 3 weeks. Do you think NYCPM said sorry once? No. My 20-page complaint with the Council did not produce any results either, to say the least :) I have been corresponding with them for nearly half a year. We sent them undisputable evidence. All I was asking at that point was for the Council to admit that NYCPM did WRONG. The last thing that the Council told us was that the complaint would be looked at again in half a year, but that future decision would be confidential. Why in the world do they all think that young podiatrists deserve this kind of treatment???

    There were a lot of other violations of the CPME Code. So I asked CPME 3-4 times if they ever surveyed the residents (current/former) to see if they thought residencies needed any improvement. Their answer was "who cares" (I mean I did not get any answers to my questions). This is why I decided to do my own independent survey (http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=748071595660). Please take it!

    We go through as much education and training as other doctors, but sometimes others look at the podiatrists as vulchers who clean up what orthopedic doctors, dermatologists and others did not take. And this is the way insurance companies and the rest of the world look at us. Podiatry will be seen as a redundant field until it can show that it can do something important (other than cutting nails :) better than any other medical specialty. I think that dishonesty in the field itself is the key problem. There is just so much of inflated information and conspiracy, there are no honest networks or support from fellow podiatrists. Podiatrists are so afraid of the competition because they know that there is no real demand for their skill. I am now half a year away from the end of my residency and has to look for a real job. Please let me know if you think podiatry has any future. Thank you!!!
  2. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    We have already had many threads on that site - did you not notice how old it is?

    Check these threads we have had:
    Why all of the podiatry negativity?
    Podiatry Negativity
    Podiatry Negativity on the Internet

    They even had a thread on it over at StudentDoctor forums:
    Are you guys & gals in denial?

    The simple answer is, just don't beleive everything you read on the www. esp by those with chips on their shoulders.

    The good answer was given by jonwill over at studentdoctor forums:
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 31, 2006
  3. HappyBigFoot

    HappyBigFoot Member

    Thank you! But nobody in the United States will deny that practice opportunities and reimbursements have only been going down. There is, for instance, a shortage of orthopedic doctors throughout the country. So if they valued podiatrists so much, they could have allowed to re-train some podiatrists to perform the duties of the orthopedic doctors, instead, they are just looking to limit the scope of practice and cut reimbursements.
  4. Cameron

    Cameron Well-Known Member


    First may I say it is the perogative for all students to pose the unthinkable. Well done, but as Craig has pointed out you are not the first, nor will you be the last. Most practitioners would quake in their boots if they had to question their very existance because, they have chosen that pathway. That is perfectly natural, after all who wants to question existance?

    Part of your uncertainty is you are now so close to graduation and commitment, now is the only time to be uncertain. By the time you qualify, making a living (and trying to settle your debt) becomes rather important. Podiatry has been around since the beginning in some form or other and is likely to survive in some form because we are bipedal and as a species commited to life style disease. Need determines primary health care is accessed to the greatest number of people and perhaps the greatest challenge which faces all medical speicialities is reformation. This is part of evolution but presents radical change to professional autonomy which now appears to threaten the model of the foot care industry. A uncomfortable time but also a window of opportunity which may prefer the less faint hearted.

    Whatever path we choose in life, it is best to be your own choice. As we cannopt live two lives careful and discerning consideration is likely to bring out the best for you. Just remember what it was like for you at this time and share empathy with those you meet on life's pathway who face the same dilemma.

    I like Lennon's philosophy, "Life is what happens between or plans."

    As to quick fixes in health economy there are none. What prevails is politics, sadly driven by greed and the medical profession have a strong political l lobby which precludes other parties entering into the fold. This does not make them bad people just unable to share the pot.

    Good fortune for the future and the very best for you exams

    Hey, what do I know?

  5. HappyBigFoot:

    You do not seem very happy so why the name??? It would be nice to have a name behind your complaints about my profession unless you desire to remain anonymous for some reason.

    Podiatry will live and thrive much longer than you will live. Why? Because the population continues to increase in age, the mass of the bodies continue to increase (especially here in the States), and since gravitational acceleration of Earth remains constant, more force will exist between the plantar foot and ground with each step (F=ma). In the end, increasing age and weight will lead to more injuries, and, therefore, more potential patients looking for positive-minded, intelligent health professionals that enjoy helping people improve their lives with state-of-the-art footcare.

    There is no conspiracy against you or your family, even though this currently may seem like the case. All of us who have successful podiatry practices have had to deal with personal setbacks and hardships to get to the point where we are finally comfortable. I suggest you start talking to podiatrists that have successful practices and try to learn why they are so successful since, I can tell by the tone of your postings, you definitely need some positive role models at this point in your career. I think that you should stop wasting your energy trying to fight the residency council where you will get little satisfaction for a lot of hard work. Better to fly with the eagles, they say.

    And by the way, if I were to believe your words, I suppose that I am the only podiatrist in the whole United States that has become busier and busier in their practice every year?!! Like I said, you need to start hanging with a different crowd since all the podiatrists I speak with (I don't waste my energy associating with negative-minded podiatrists who only are happy when they are complaining) are getting busier every year and love their profession. Maybe this website http://www.apma.org/s_apma/doc.asp?CID=11&DID=18788 will help you start getting that dark cloud from hovering around your head so that you can focus on the positive aspects of the profession that you have worked so hard to excel in.

    Just some friendly advice. :)
  6. HappyBigFoot

    HappyBigFoot Member

    Dr. Kirby,
    Thank you for all your advices! They help! But it looks like unless you complain, nobody is going to pay attention to you or talk to you at all :) I am glad that my posting caught your attention (it is good to hear what different peple think, although you might not be representing the exact point of view of my generation of podiatrists).

    Re my name, I have many reasons to be happy outside podiatry. I desire to remain anonymous, but not because I would not stand up for what I said. Re NYCPM and the Council, I do not believe that peope who work as hard as I do, who are as honest as I am need to be put through all these "challenges" to theoretically eventually understand the taste of success. This makes a young podiatrist like myself feel that a fronte praecipitium a tergo lupi :) So I posted my story in a hope that other young podiatrists read it and stay alert.

    And we'll just hope that our healthcare system takes turn for the better (maybe even later this week after the State of the Union address :))
  7. HappyBigFoot

    HappyBigFoot Member

  8. There are many areas of our country that need well-trained podiatrists where the economics of making a very good living are not difficult to achieve. This is not so in larger metropolitan areas where the competetion is much greater and the need for quality podiatrists is much less.

    Keep a positive spirit, use common sense, and try to be as flexible as possible when considering jobs and job locations. In my experience, those podiatrists who choose to practice in "less popular" areas of the country, that have no well trained surgical podiatrists, become busy very quickly and are looking for associates to help them with the demands of their busy practices within 3-5 years of opening their practice. Of course, this assumes that the surgical podiatrist is well-trained, treats their patients well, has a good personality, and doesn't make stupid business decisions along the way.

    Podiatry is a great profession.....quit hanging around with those individuals that are negative and are always complaining. Find a few positive role models within podiatry to latch onto, watch how they interact with their colleagues and how they treat their patients and staff. This one move may do more for you, your practice and your family than you now could ever imagine.
  9. HappyBigFoot

    HappyBigFoot Member

    I have tried to contact several state boards and APMA but nobody seemed to know what places need more podiatrists. I also did my own research through the Medicare providers' database, through the American Diabetes Association, CDC, etc., but it seems that almost every small town has at least one podiatrist. In addition, if we move to the place where my wife can never find a job and where there are no schools, this would not be good either. I understand that everybody who is coming out of residency faces the same "old" questions, but I appreciate any feedback that I get... I was looking mostly on the East coast and the central states, but do you have any suggestions as to any particular geographic locations where we, podiatrists, might be underrepresented?

    P.S. Sorry to bore our UK and AU colleagues with these questions (I wish I could go work abroad for some time, but unfortunately, as a resident, I could not save any money for traveling :))
  10. John Spina

    John Spina Active Member

    I am sorry about your situation!While this can make you bitter about this profession,the truth is that we as pods offer the public a lot.Look,I am not going to give you a line of nonsense.It can be hard to break in.People think we are glorified pedicurists,if we are lucky....some folks do not even know what we do.There are frauds,crooks and cheats in our(and ANY) profession.True,medicare cuts do affect us more than MDs.But I have a couple of stories just from today:I am treating a man.80+ diabetic,hx of AKA right side.On New Year's eve,I went to his house.He had a Wagner Grade 1 ulcer.1.2 by 1.5 cm.His son was worried.I started him on duoderm and zinc oxide.Now?The ulcer shrank by half.Both patient and son are happy.I can even close it down.Then an elderly lady history of CVA and is wheelchair bound.I debrided her thick,painful nails.She said she is happy I am her doctor.These 2 stories and others make podiatry worth it.Why?Well,we can offer instant relief.I think there will always be a need for us.I wish you well.You will make it.However,if after a period of time,you still are not happy,i cannot blame you if you thought about a new career.Your friend,John Spina
  11. HappyBigFoot

    HappyBigFoot Member

    Yes, it feels great to be able to make a difference. Thank you, everybody, for your encouragement!

Share This Page