Menu Icon Search
Close Search

Professional Profile: Jane Andersen, DPM [Podiatric Medicine]

Created 10.13.07 by Lee
Share Comment

Dr. Jane Andersen is a podiatric physician and surgeon practicing in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. She and her husband share a private practice where they treat a wide variety of patients, including athletes, children, adults and the elderly.

Dr. Andersen is board certified in foot surgery by the American Board of Podiatric Surgery, serves on the American Podiatric Medical Association’s Public Education and Information Committee, and is on the executive board of the American Association for Women Podiatrists.

After receiving her undergraduate degree in biology from Indiana University, Dr. Andersen obtained her Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (DPM) degree from the California College of Podiatric Medicine in San Francisco, California, and completed residency programs at Stanford University Medical Center and at DVAMC Palo Alto. In addition to these professional accomplishments, Dr. Andersen is also the mother of two young daughters.

In a recent interview, Dr. Andersen shared her thoughts and advice on the pursuit and practice of podiatric medicine.

How would you describe a typical day at work?
I usually see patients in the office between 8:00am and 4:30pm. I consult with patients, read x-rays, cast for orthotics, and do several types of small procedures including injections, ingrown toenails, biopsies and palliative care. Usually, one afternoon a week, I am doing surgery at the surgery center or hospital. At the end of each day, I get caught up on charting and answer phone calls from patients. I usually end up going home between 5:30pm and 6:30pm.

If you had it to do all over again, would you still become a doctor?
Yes, I enjoy helping people. I need that sort of positive feedback in my daily life.

Why did you choose your specialty?

I chose podiatric medicine because I thought it was a great way to do a variety of things: surgery, conservative care, pediatrics, rheumatology, dermatology, orthopedics. It is a very broad field that is geographically limited to the foot and ankle. I also like not being in life and death situations.

Do you feel that your specialty has met your expectations?
Yes, I have experienced all types of practice as a podiatric physician. There are many ways to serve the community in this profession, and many ways to meet your goals and expectations.

Are you satisfied with your income?
Yes, although it took me a while to get to this point. I anticipate that it will continue to improve over the next several years.

What do you like the most and the least about your specialty?
What I like the most is when I can help people walk, run, dance, and exercise pain free. What I like least is the charting!

Have you found paying back your educational loans to be a financial strain?
Now it is not a strain, but it was in the beginning. It was more difficult when I had young children in daycare. I will be paying for many years to come, largely because my husband has loans also.

Generally, what is your daily sleep schedule, your weekly work schedule, and your annual vacation schedule?
I sleep from 6.5-7.5 hours per night, I work from 35-40 hours per week, and I usually take between 2-3 weeks of vacation per year.

Do you feel that you have enough time to spend with your family?
Yes, my husband is also a podiatric physician, and we practice together. We have two daughters, ages 9 and 6. I have a certain amount of flexibility with my schedule since we are self-employed, so I can make time to be a part of their lives.

If you could go back ten years, what advice would you give to yourself?

I would say don’t be afraid to be in practice by yourself, and don’t be afraid to move on if a situation is not meeting your expectations.

What advice do you wish you had been given when you were a pre-med?
Don’t sweat the small stuff! What your major is may not have any bearing or influence on your success in medical school. Study in order to learn something interesting, even if it doesn’t directly relate to your final career choice. (Of course, take the appropriate pre-med requirements.)

From your perspective, what is the biggest problem in healthcare today?
Insurance. It is too complicated. While our expenses go up, insurance reimbursements go down.

What do you believe is the biggest problem within your own specialty?
Lack of public understanding about what we are trained to do. My community is fairly well informed, but many are not.

What is the best way to prepare for your specialty?
Visit a podiatrist’s office on more than one occasion. See if it is a lifestyle and specialty that seems interesting to you. You can contact APMA to make arrangements to shadow a podiatric physician at [email protected].

Where do you see your specialty in ten years?
On par with every other medical specialty in terms of how we are perceived by the public.

What types of outreach or volunteer work do you do?
I serve on the Public Education & Information Committee of the American Podiatric Medical Association. Working with the committee allows me to help podiatrists achieve the goal of educating the public about our abilities. I also serve on the Board of the American Association for Women Podiatrists. On occasion I speak with local medical groups, and I also help educate undergraduate students on podiatric medicine as part of the DPM Mentor Network.

What is the greatest misunderstanding about your specialty?
There is a misunderstanding of our abilities. Many people don’t realize we do all types of foot and ankle surgery.

What is your favorite TV show? Also, what do you do in your spare time, outside of work?
“24” is my favorite show. We’re glued to it every week. Other activities include playing with our kids, walking, jogging, reading, shopping and traveling.

Do you have any final thoughts or advice that you would like to add?
There are many opportunities in podiatric medicine: working in a hospital (teaching or otherwise), teaching at a podiatric medical college, multi-specialty group practice, group podiatric practice and solo practice. There are also many different areas to specialize in: diabetes, pediatrics, sports medicine, geriatric care, surgery and general podiatric medicine. Opportunities are endless, and the profession can offer a great lifestyle.

Courtesy of:

// Share //

// Comments //

Comments

  1. drjds says:

    When you say, “…don’t be afraid to move on if a situatiion is not meeting your expectations,” what did you mean by that? What type of situation were you in?

  2. Seth M Felice says:

    Good interview! Thanks for sharing your perspective.

  3. ifeoha says:

    I am proud of your achievement.

  4. Wenjay Sung says:

    Great profile. Dr. Anderson is an excellent role model for us entering residency and about to get our feet wet in the real world. It’s always uplifting to hear positive testimonies from those who have achieved so much while being still relatively young!

// Recent Articles //

20141218_ASDAPreDent_SS_222370252
  • National Predental Week – Feb. 8-15, 2015

  • Posted 12.18.14 by ASDA
  • During the week of Feb. 8-15, the American Student Dental Association (ASDA) will celebrate National Predental Week. There are currently more than 22,000 ASDA members representing each of the 65 U.S. dental schools and a growing number of predental members. Why You Should Participate If you are a predental, consider joining the largest national student-run...VIEW >
20141217_MedStudent_SS_220419091
  • Seven Habits of Highly Effective Clinical Students

  • Posted 12.17.14 by Rishi Kumar, MD
  • Republished with permission from here. Congratulations! You’ve made it to the clinical portion of medical school. Now you’ll work alongside interns, residents, attendings, pharmacists, social workers, and a myriad of other health care workers to provide quality care for your patients. As a resident, I’ve seen medical and PA students struggle with feelings of anxiety,...VIEW >
20141215_Obesity_SS_122049247
  • Medical, +1 MORE
  • Effective Communication with the Obese Patient

  • Posted 12.15.14 by Brian Wu
  • Whether a physician goes into general practice or into a specialty area, it is likely that he or she is going to have to work with a patient population that is increasingly overweight or obese. In America alone, over half of the population is overweight and one-third is considered to be obese. Furthermore, medical experts...VIEW >
IOTW-SDN small
  • Figure 1 Image of the Week, 12/13/14

  • Posted 12.13.14 by Figure 1
  • Image of the Week – The Clock Draw Test The clock draw test can be a window into the mind of a patient with dementia. Certain types of dementia show classic patterns on a clock draw test, which is why this test has become an important part of any dementia assessment. The erratic layout of...VIEW >
20141212_Puzzle_SS_105328079
  • Coming to a Future Near You: Neuromodulation, a Multi-Specialty Field

  • Posted 12.12.14 by Shannon Hann, MD, with Simon Thomson, MBBS
  • Neuromodulation is an exciting therapy for improving neurological ailments. When I graduated medical school in 2009, I had no idea what “neuromodulation” meant or the surgeries it encompasses despite my interest in neurosurgery. Even today, I hear about practicing physicians seeing a spinal cord stimulator for the first time because they had no exposure during...VIEW >
20141210_Research_SS_72141592
  • Leveraging Pre-Med Learning Experiences for Success

  • Posted 12.10.14 by Anubodh Varshney, MD
  • Pre-medical students can – and should – take advantage of the many opportunities available to them to gain valuable insight into what it is like to be a physician. Some of these experiences involve clinical shadowing, some encompass biomedical research, and others even expose students to alternative career paths for doctors. Given the diverse options...VIEW >
20141208_Doctor_SS_115144633
  • A Day in the Life of a Young Hospitalist

  • Posted 12.08.14 by Joshua Allen-Dicker, MD, MPH
  • I am a young hospitalist who is 16 months into my role at an urban academic medical center. Unlike many of my more-senior colleagues who found their way to hospital medicine by circumstance, luck, or as a second-career path, I have been planning my career in hospital medicine since the beginning of my residency training....VIEW >

// Forums //