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20 Questions: Jonathan L. Williamson, DPM, AACFAS

Created 04.22.12 by Juliet Farmer
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Podiatrist Jonathan L. Williamson currently practices at the New Mexico Foot & Ankle Institute in Albuquerque, as well as holds admission, surgical and call privileges (emergency and floor) at five area hospitals. Prior to earning his medial degree, Williamson earned his bachelor’s degree in both biological sciences and Brazilian Portuguese from the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. He went on to earn a doctor of podiatric medicine from Des Moines University College of Podiatric Medicine and Surgery, and then served a three-year podiatric medicine and surgery residency at the Detroit Medical Center.

During his education, Dr. Williamson was awarded two educational foundation scholarships from American Podiatric Medical Association, as well as the Iowa Podiatric Medical Students’ Association outstanding student award. Active in several professional organizations, Dr. Williamson currently serves as treasurer of the New Mexico Podiatric Medical Association, and he is also a member of New Mexico Podiatric Medical Association, American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, and American Podiatric Medical Association.

When did you first decide to become a podiatrist? Why?
I knew that I wanted to pursue a career in medicine but I wasn’t sure which field. I shadowed quite a few different doctors and wasn’t really excited about any of them. One day, I ran into a family friend who was a podiatrist and asked if I could spend some time with him. I loved it.

How/why did you choose the podiatry/medical school you went to?
I had a wife and kid when I started podiatry school and wanted a solid academic education but also a safe and quiet place for my family. The Des Moines University College of Podiatric Medicine was integrated with the DO program, which I liked, and Des Moines was a quiet, family-oriented place. It was also very affordable.

What surprised you the most about podiatry/medical school?
The thing that surprised me most about podiatry school was the amount of information I was expected to retain in such a short period of time. I didn’t think it was going to be as difficult as it was.

If you had it to do all over again, would you still become a podiatrist? (Why or why not? What would you have done instead?)
I definitely would do it over again. In the end, I’m not sure that there is only one thing in this world that I would have been happy doing but I am definitely happy with my profession.

Has being a podiatrist met your expectations? Why or why not?
Yes, it has met my expectations. I had pretty high expectations concerning the way I wanted to practice and was able to find a place that allows me to do just that. Podiatry is a broad field and it is important to find a situation that will challenge and reward you. I think that is different for everyone.

What do you like most about being a podiatrist?
I like the diversity of the specialty. Recent surgeries [I have performed] include a trimalleolar ankle fracture, a flatfoot reconstruction on a 10 year old, a calcaneal fracture, a bunion, hammertoes, excision of a soft tissue mass, a transmetatarsal amputation, an ankle fusion, and a subtalar joint fusion. My clinic ranges from patients with nail fungus and plantar fasciitis, to severe foot deformities, fractures, and everything in between. Every day is different.

What do you like least about being a podiatrist?
I don’t like dealing with the ever-changing insurance issues and paperwork. Medicine is a bureaucracy, especially when the government gets involved. Guidelines are constantly changing and need to be met. It’s hard enough to keep up with the medical aspect of things but that is only part of the game.

What was it like finding a job in your chosen career field? What were your options and why did you decide what you did?
I started looking for a job my last year of residency. I sent my CV and cover letter to various private practices, orthopedic groups, and hospital groups in the area I wanted to practice. I got a handful of hits and ended up interviewing with a podiatry group and an orthopedic group. In the end, I liked the location, control, and freedom that went along with the podiatry group.

How much of your time is spent teaching/seeing patients/doing research? Can you change that mix if you want to?
Most of my time is spent seeing patients, but I usually spend at least an hour a day or more documenting (notes) and dictating (surgeries, H&P’s, discharge summaries, etc). Residents from a local program scrub some of my cases and it is fun to teach them. I honestly don’t do research at this point in my career. I can always change it if I get bored.

Describe a typical day at work.
I usually have a day or day and a half of surgery a week. I have surgery every Thursday morning starting at 7:30 a.m. and usually one other half day depending on the week. My clinic starts at 8 a.m. and my last patient is at 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday. On Friday, my clinic ends at 2:30 p.m. If I have patients that I have admitted, I round on them after clinic or at lunch if I have time.

On average: How many hours a week do you work? How many hours do you sleep per night? How many weeks of vacation do you take?
On non-call weeks, I spend 55 to 60 hours at work. On call weeks, it can honestly range from 60 to 80 hours depending on how busy it is. I only take call one week out of every three months. I sleep six to eight hours at night. I only take a couple weeks of vacation a year, but plan on taking more as time goes on.

Are you satisfied with your income?
I am very satisfied with my income. My original package was a reasonable salary and included health insurance, malpractice, 401K, etc. More importantly, it rewarded production. As I’ve gotten busier, my salary has continued to increase.

If you took out educational loans, is/was paying them back a financial strain?
No, not really. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t like paying them back, but can easily afford to do so.

In your position now, knowing what you do – what would you say to yourself 10 years ago?
Get ready to work but it will be worth it in the end.

What information/advice do you wish you had known when you were beginning podiatry/medical school?
Nothing in particular, I think you have to learn as you go. Those students ahead of you are a font of knowledge and you need to make sure you use them. The nice thing about life is that there are always people ahead of you that have been through what you are going through. Don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions.

From your perspective, what is the biggest problem in healthcare today?
As cost continues to increase, less people can afford health insurance. In the end, something has to give.

Where do you see podiatry in 10 years?
Podiatry has come a long way from its roots. In most places, podiatrists are now members of medical staff and are an integral part of the medical team. They hold surgical and admitting privileges. Hopefully, scope of practice issues will continue to resolve. There are still a couple states where podiatrists can’t operate on ankles or have other such limitations. These political issues need to be resolved as it ultimately affects patient care. We are the foot and ankle experts.

What types of outreach/volunteer work do you do, if any?
I currently volunteer as the treasurer for our state organization and I help in the training of residents.

How do you balance work and life/family?
I take advantage of the weeks that aren’t so busy. I have a wife and four kids. Some weeks, I am barely home, while others aren’t so bad. I make those weeks count. I also try and take time off every two to three months.

Do you have any final piece of advice for students interested in pursuing podiatric medicine as a career?
It is a great field with a lot of opportunity. I would spend plenty of time shadowing a podiatrist and make sure that it is something you would be happy doing.

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Comments

  1. Guess what says:

    Podiatrists don’t go to medical school. They go to podiatry school. They are well trained midlevels but don’t write an article presenting them as physicians, because they aren’t.

    1. Uhhh says:

      what? Of course they’re physicians! Medical school results in MD, but MD isn’t the only thing that makes someone a physician. “well-trained” midlevels? They do 4 years of schooling plus 2-3 residency. why the hate?

    2. Adam says:

      At no point in this article does the author present Dr Williamson as being anything other than a podiatrist who went to podiatry school. What are they midlevels to? It’s a related but totally separate profession. By your logic, you might as well claim that dentists are, at best, mediocre oncologists.

  2. hey says:

    shhh

  3. G says:

    They’re mid-levels…. right.

    Which is why they have hospital/admitting privileges, perform full scale foot and ankle surgery including amputations, and can diagnose and prescribe medication, and go through 7 years of school & training after college.

  4. Tom Harry says:

    This was very informative about podiatry and gives insight into what podiatrists do. Sadly, people still discriminate toward podiatrists, but as the article states, this only hurts the patients. Clearly patients with foot and ankle needs should be treated by podiatrists, including nail fungus, ingrown nails all the way to bunions and more complex rearfoot surgeries.

  5. Ortho says:

    Orthopaedic foot and ankle docs are the specialists of foot and ankle medicine, not podiatrists.

    Podiatrists are not physicians. They are podiatrists. In many states, they must have a physician (anesthesiologist, internist, other surgeon) do their H&P before surgery can commence.

    They are not trained in general internal medicine, pediatrics, ob/gyn, surgery, family medicine, neurology.

    I worked with a podiatry “resident” who had never even read an EKG. He was wondering what p waves were.

    Physician? LOL. No.

  6. Keno says:

    Ortho, your ignorance and apparent biased view is astounding. “Podiatric Physicians”, “Podiatrists”, whatever you’d like to call them, are as knowledgeable as it gets when it comes to medicine and surgery of the foot and ankle. Regardless whether or not they have an MD, DO, or DPM, neither an MD/DO will have any more expertise in the lower extremity than a DPM. Quite a lofty opinion for yourself on being able to read an EKG better than your podiatry resident…”LOL”…but…could you perform a complex rearfoot/forefoot surgery or complex ankle reconstruction any better if at all? I would venture to say there are many residents that went the allopathic/osteopathic route that would have trouble recalling some of the basic things learned in pre-clinical years…(but that has nothing to do with the matter at hand). Instead of trying to bring down a profession you are not involved with, how about acknowledging what great expertise podiatrists have in their specialty. And by the way, the only training they don’t get in your bogus list is ob/gyn, so get your facts straight as well. “Podiatric Physicians”? – “LOL” yes.

    1. Chris says:

      Absolutely correct, Keno. Podiatrists have every bit of the medical knowledge of medical doctors.

      As far as the anecdote that Ortho referenced…Why would a surgeon need to know that medical mumbo-jumbo anyway? A P wave? More like a Z wave! AmIright?!?! That’s heart-“doctor” stuff. Surly no complications can arise that would need to be recognized stat based on an EKG. No, that will wait until the post-op period.

      1. Keno says:

        Ever heard of the “July effect”? Don’t pretend like residents of any background don’t get thrown into a hospital environment and function like seasoned veterans.

      2. Bill says:

        Keno never said podiatrists have every bit of the medical knowledge of medical doctors. Also, realize that no medical doctor knows and understands every bit of medical knowledge. I work with podiatrists and they know their s**t when it comes to foot and ankle. Same goes for ortho foot and ankle guys. Not everything has to be a competition. Amiright?!??!

      3. Chris says:

        There’s a reason it’s called “the July effect.” If podiatrists were leading the charge, it would be the “July-August-September-October-November-December…Effect.”

      4. Chris says:

        My point isn’t that physicians know “everything about medicine.” My point is that if a medical student decides on a surgical career, they will know the basics about EKGs, complications that can arise from a given surgery, and how to deal with those complications, well before they are residents. If I had to have surgery on my foot, I wouldn’t go to a podiatrist. However, if I had to have a toenail removed…

  7. Ben says:

    Podiatrists are not physicians. If you don’t go to medical school you don’t have a medical career. Period. You have a podiatric career. Don’t try to steal others thunder.. You are a foot doctor.

  8. sarah says:

    If you think a podiatrist knows as much as an orthopedic surgeon, you’ve lost your freaking mind!

    1. someguy123 says:

      As far as foot/ankle concerns go? Yes I do…and for the record, I am quite sane.

  9. rupert says:

    What do you call the guy who finishes first in his class at podiatry school? “the guy who couldnt get into med school”

    1. someguy123 says:

      what do you call the internet tough guy who makes lame jokes on a blog like this? An A**hole!

  10. someguy123 says:

    wow, the idiots are out in force today…..I love how whenever a Pod is profiled (and a very successful one at that) on 20 questions, it becomes a Podiatry/Ortho pissing contest….

  11. Ortho says:

    Why do pods on sdn try to present themselves as physicians?

    If they aren’t equal to MD/DO, as even some pods here have mentioned, then they are midlevels.

    They aren’t trained in medicine and surgery. They are trained in podiatry.

    Why the need to claim more expertise?

    Be proud of being podiatrists. Don’t be claiming to be physicians or more knowledgeable than ortho surgeons. It’s unbecoming.

    1. ODoc says:

      Aren’t trained in medicine and surgery? What do you think they are doing during the course of their three year surgical residency? You are way off base bro, and that is what is unbecoming and unprofessional.

  12. Ortho says:

    No. They don’t hold unrestricted licenses to practice med/surg like md/do.

    They are not trained as physicians. This much is clear to the public and to physicians.

    1. Keno says:

      They have a license to practice medicine and surgery in their specialty.nThey are trained for medicine and surgery of the foot and ankle. You sound like a ignorant pre-med. Check your ego at the door, what’s clear is you are a tool.

  13. Ortho says:

    Keno, physicians have full and unrestricted licenses. Podiatrists have licenses to practice podiatry. You can’t get around this fact.

    Pods are trained in foot care. They are not physicians.

  14. Keno says:

    Fact: You are not a physician. And no, your unrestricted driver’s license doesn’t count. Neither does the 80 credit hours you’ve put towards your biology degree.

    1. @Keno says:

      Stop. You’re not even addressing the professions/matters at hand anymore–just making embarrassing ad hominem attacks. Even If I don’t agree with Ortho he’s looking a lot more likable than you right now, if nothing for the fact that he is actually staying on topic.

      1. Keno says:

        Lighten up bro, even the (oh my goodness, should I say it?) physician below has a good sense of humor!

  15. DPM says:

    Some pretty funny comments above. I am a podiatrist and yes, we are physicians. Midlevel, to who? How can you be a surgeon and not a physician??? How can I admit a patient to the hospital if I haven’t been trained in medicine and surgery or if I’m not a memeber of medical staff? This morning I did an achilles tendon repair and a pediatric flatfoot reconstruction. I do admit trying to tell the hospital that I am not a physician so I don’t have to take call but they wouldn’t go for it. Apparently ALL STAFF PHYSICIANS have too. But I’ve got to say my favorite comment above is about ortho reading an EKG’s. CLASSIC! In residency I remember trying to show an EKG to an ortho attending and he threw it down and said, “consult medicine.”

  16. ortho says:

    Yeah, Keno keeps it real. He/she can’t address the issue at hand, which is this: podiatrists are not physicians.

    In many hospitals, they can’t do H&P’s for surgery. They are not trained in med/surg. They do not hold unrestricted licenses to practice medicine/surgery as MD/DO’s do.

    Their licenses are not equal to MD/DO, no matter how many ad hominem attacks he/she pulls out. Therefore, they aren’t on the same clinical level, especially from a gov’t point of view.

    So, they are midlevels. They have alot of leeway, more than most midlevels, to practice their craft, but the fact remains that they have restrictions on them.

    As they should. After all, they have restricted training compared to physicians.

    So, no, you didn’t go to medical school. You went to podiatry school.
    No, you aren’t a physicians. You’re a podiatrist.

    That’s OK. Good for you.

    Don’t mislead patients on those facts.

    1. boblob says:

      I think you are confused as to what a midlevel is.

      FROM THE GOVERNMENT:
      “Pursuant to Title 21, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 1300.01(b28), the term mid-level practitioner means an individual practitioner, other than a physician, dentist, veterinarian, or podiatrist, who is licensed, registered, or otherwise permitted by the United States or the jurisdiction in which he/she practices, to dispense a controlled substance in the course of professional practice. ”
      http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drugreg/practioners/index.html

      http://healthcareers.about.com/od/n/g/mid-level.htm
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mid-level_practitioner

      It looks like from the government’s point of view that podiatrists aren’t considered midlevels.

      I’m not saying podiatrists are physicians, but they aren’t midlevels.

      Don’t mislead people on those facts.

  17. Max says:

    We are not physicians, we are podiatrists. We go to podiatry school to become podiatrists. I love all the semantics about being podiatric physicians and what not. I am a proud podiatrist and that is how I address myself.

    However we are not midlevels, we occupy our own special niche.

    Administration, Department of Justice; Part 1300 Definitions], the term mid-level practitioner means “an individual practitioner, other than a physician, dentist, veterinarian, or podiatrist, who is licensed, registered, or otherwise permitted by the United States or the jurisdiction in which he/she practices, to dispense a controlled substance in the course of professional practice. Examples of mid-level practitioners include, but are not limited to, health care providers such as nurse practitioners, nurse midwives, nurse anesthetists, clinical nurse specialists and physician assistants who are authorized to dispense controlled substances by the state in which t

  18. Dude says:

    Yea the physician is up in the air. You can say podiatric physician or F/A physician for sure, if you are comfortable with that term. It is however quite clear as shown above that Podiatrists are absolutely not mid-level practitioners. Podiatrists do not answer to any authority different than other surgeons/doctors (chief of departments, etc.), so saying they are mid-levels and ignorant is out of the question.

    In regards to whether or not they are as good as F/A orthos, consider the fact that a good amount of F/A orthos are trained by podiatrists during fellowship and residency. Also, Podiatrists spend 7+ years on the lower extremity, whereas orthos do a general surgery or ortho residency, and then a F/A fellowship of one year. Now before that one year they certainly have F/A training, but nothing near that of a podiatric residency. It is time for this pissing contest to end, podiatrists are generally satisfied as podiatric surgeons, and they do amazing work, and are just as good as any given F/A surgeon. Some may be better than most orthos, and some may be worse. Many ortho groups now hire podiatrists for the F/A department, so I think we should follow their lead and realize we are on the same team and anyone finishing 7+ years of intense medical training is talented and capable of performing at a high level.

    Last thing, I know there are restrictions regarding podiatrists scope in a few states. I imagine those restrictions will disappear within the next several years as the three year residency has become the standard and all podiatrists graduating from residency are well prepared to perform any surgery, and treat any patient’s lower extremity.

    Enjoy the pissing contest,

    Family Med DO, I refer to both podiatrists and F/A ortho in my community. Both are equally excellent and I tend to split the cases evenly.

  19. bunion says:

    Ortho.
    I agree, they are podiatrists not physicians. But you keep saying they are not trained in surgery, THEY ARE. They DO surgeries. they can be called foot surgeons. The fact that they can legally cut someone open, re-arrange muscle tissue, tendons and bones means they can perform surgery. FYI Md/DOs in primary care, psychiatry, pediatrics cannot do surgeries after residency PODS CAN. Sure they can do them in residency but guess what, Pods are on the same rotations as them (except for OBGYN). If you want to play semantics, sure they are not medical doctors, DO’s are not either. In the end the patient gets what they need and that is what matters.

  20. ortho says:

    I’m glad to see that the podiatry crowd is now agreeing that they are not physicians, but podiatrists.

    I understand that podiatrists work “fully within their licensed specialty”, but the fact remains that they do not hold a full and unrestricted license to practice medicine and surgery as MD/DOs do.

    I don’t care what the department of justice calls it, the reality is that means they do not meet the full requirements of a physician. Neither do dentists. Or pharmacists.

    Dentists are on a different spectrum than physicians, as they don’t practice within a hospital (usually). Podiatrists do. Podiatrists are mid-levels to the physician in training, knowledge, and licensure.

    You can push the semantics around, but you’ll end up with the same thing everytime.

    I understand that podiatrists do foot surgery, but they are neither trained in medicine or surgery. This is a subtle concept, but an important one for patient safety and care.

    1. boblob says:

      Ok again. You aren’t understanding what a midlevel is. A midlevel MUST function under the supervision of a physician. A podiatrist doesn’t have to function under the supervision of a physician. Just as a dentist doesn’t.

      And the only reason I brought up what the Department of Justice calls podiatrists is because you mentioned “from a government point of view.” Clearly, “from a government point of view”, podiatrists are not midlevels. In fact, I’ve never seen podiatrists anywhere classified as midlevels. If you could provide a source stating where they are, I would appreciate it. Until then, stop stating things as facts that simply aren’t .

      “You can push the semantics around, but you’ll end up with the same thing every time.”
      I’m not pushing semantics around. I’m providing sources and facts. Could you do the same?

      1. Confusion says:

        I think the correct term is “podiatric physician”.

    2. William Carter says:

      Ortho. what the hell are you talking about? Podiatrists are licensed to do foot and ankle surgery. No MD/DO anything else is licensed to do full-body surgery, every surgeon has his specialty, you have general surgeons, foot and ankle orthopod surgeons, spinal orthopod surgeons, heart surgeons, brain surgeons, and, yes, goddamn foot and ankle surgeons. How is a foot and ankle surgery any less of a surgery than a heart or a hip surgery?

  21. Unrestricted says:

    MD/DO’s do not have unrestricted licenses. They are restricted by their training and by hospital bylaws. Just talk to Michael Jackson’s cardiologist about that one. Legally, you have an obligation to practice within your scope of practice as set forth by your specified training. Orthopods can’t deliver babies just because they are an MD and did an OB/Gyn rotation. OB’s can’t board a TKA just because they did an ortho rotation. What do you mean by “unrestricted?”

    1. ortho says:

      Podiatrists must have a physician do a preop h&p on their patients in many hospitals and states. Sounds like they are “under” physicians. They do not have the same training nor privilege as physicians, yet work in the hospital setting. They are not to the “full level” of a physician, therefore, they are midlevel. Why does this offend podiatrists?

      And yes, MD/DO have an unrestricted license to practice medicine and surgery. Podiatrists do not. While bylaws may restrict credentialing with regards to hospital privileges, the license is not restricted like a podiatrists.

      1. boblob says:

        Nowhere has anyone said they are offended. You are simply wrong and I’m trying to help you see that. They are not to the “full level” of a physician. I have already said to you that I agree with that. That doesn’t classify them as a “midlevel”. A midlevel is a classification used by hospitals, the government, insurance companies, etc. What I am asking you (for I think the third time) is where you are seeing podiatrists are classified as midlevels. Just because you say they are does not mean they are. Again, provide your source.

  22. prettypod says:

    Every medical specialty has it restrictions or scope of practice, MD or DO if trained in internal medicine can’t do surgery, or if trained in cardiothoracic surgery can’t get a job as an internist. Podiatrists are in line with every other medical specialty in regards to having limitations on what they can and cannot do, just like everyone else your scope is regulated by your residency training. I’m surprised to see this animosity I guess mostly because at the hospital I work at we take a team approach and don’t spend time dissecting who deserves to be called what, we just try to get ‘er done!

  23. animalgensurgMD says:

    Prettypod is right, no one has an unrestricted license to practice medicine or surgery in any regard, not DPT/DPM/MD/DPT/DO/OD or any other kind of doctor out there. I like the limited scope our licenses give us, we can concentrate on what interests us and when something comes along that is outside my scope/interest I can pass it along to someone who does have a license/interest in that area.
    I think this is a great 20Questions, I enjoyed reading it and know and respect many of the podiatrists I work with. I rub elbows with them every day in the OR, they are doing some amazing things with charcot recon, total ankle replacements, bone tumors, and other stuff I don’t understand (nor want to). They give me hell for dealing with poop, I give em hell for dealing with toe jam, LOL, it’s all good.

    1. Ortho says:

      Nice pod posts here, but yes, MD/DO have unrestricted licenses to practice medicine. Podiatrists don’t.

      You’re not physicians! You didn’t go to medical school.

      Stop fooling yourselves and patients.

      1. Commenter says:

        ^
        |
        |
        |
        |
        (pre-med)

        Anyway…

        They are physicians and surgeons with regard to the foot and ankle. If an MD/DO that practices IM wakes up tomorrow and wants to do Plastics, he or she would have to go through the necessary extra training to be “licensed” for it. An unrestricted license gives them the ability to match into (hopefully) whatever specialty they seek, or potentially change paths if they so choose. A DPM is a highly trained specialist that goes through a three year surgical residency knowing what they want to do when they enter school, and is then licensed for it like any other medical specialty and held to professional standards and obligations required of any surgeon. Hence the term “podiatric physician.” What’s also unique about DPM’s is they could be involved in cases everyday that encompass different aspects of many areas of medicine as it pertains to the lower extremity.

  24. DerMD says:

    Everyone has overlaps in what they are licensed to do and no one wants their slice of pie taken, it appears some ortho guy on on here is getting his toes stepped on by the podiatrists, which I have definitely seen in the past, not a new concept. At my hospital they do derm for the lower leg, but we’re all salary so I’m happy to let them do it! From what I understand they are also getting all the lower leg/foot trauma and elective cases as well. Without podiatry physicians in my group, all of us other physician types would have to work harder and be inundated, so I’m happy to have them aboard! Again, if you’re not salary I can see how you don’t want your slice of the medical pie taken, guess the ortho guys will have to step up their game to keep up!

  25. Jobel says:

    Good posts, of course no doctor has unrestricted licensure, I’d like to see a nephrologist waltz into the OR and ORIF a femoral fracture, 1st he wouldn’t be able to 2nd if he was successful then he certainly wouldn’t be practicing any kind of medicine for the rest of his life.
    And if you don’t like your specialty and/or wanna pursue a different one then yes you can definitely go back and apply for more/different schooling/residency training, you may increase your scope to where you interests are more atune to but you will still have limitations on what you can and cannot do. Geez how long is the residency that gives you an unlimited license to do everything? Forever! And when you did complete it you would get no business because people would want to go to specialists, not someone who trained in a 40 year residency to have an unrestricted surgical and medial license and lives in an old folks home LOL too funny.
    This ortho guy on here hasn’t got a clue what the real world is like. My neighbor is ortho trauma and I told him about this post, he laughed, but did mention that it is not uncommon for ortho guys to have that attitude, especially if they are sub par. He was trained in part by some podiatrists, and they in turn train some of his ortho peers, he was very respectful in their training and abilities, but I’m not either so you two can hash that out amongst yourselves.
    Good 20Qs, I refer to podiatry quite frequently and our shared patients seem very happy with the treatment plans and outcomes. I think since it is a specialty medical school any prospective pod docs out there should definitely do their homework and SHADOW SHADOW SHADOW! But I think some podiatry medical schools are intergrated with the general medical schools that most of us go to, so there may be some opportunity to make a lateral move if you go to one of those programs, I’m not sure but do your homework!
    For now I’m gonna keep sending my ankle and foot and toe pain guys to the podiatry docs, everyone’s been happy and it’s the patients that are most important here, so thank you Dr. Williamson for the vital medical services you and all your colleagues provide for the patients, keep up the good work!

  26. MaryU says:

    I’m a pharmacy student, but I thought I’d chime in here since I had an orthopedic doctor fix my ankle fracture, then I had to have a podiatry doctor fix what he did, and finally I can walk without pain!
    I intern at a hospital where the surgery department has two clinical pharmacists in the department, we work with podiatry and the other guys quite frequently and I don’t see how you can classify them as anything other than physicians since they go about business the same as the other surgeons in the hospial in regards to surgery, admits, residents, clinics, surgery meetings, etc.
    I’m surely not going to anything but a podiatrist for anything ankle/foot ever again!

    1. Ryan says:

      This was a great article, looks like something I’d like to pursue.

  27. Maxheart says:

    Ah, the age old debate, specialties overlap, the nature of medicine nowadays and the ones that usually get their feelings hurt are the ones that aren’t doing well by their patients clinically, floundering practices and try to blame their lack of success on another specialty.
    I have two neighbors who are podiatrists and they are doing a crazy array of things, too long to list all of them here: vascular testing, amputations, rheumatology, derm, ortho, plastics, diabetic care, biomechanics, physical med/rehab, e-stim, surgery, casting, pediatrics, oncology, the list goes on…
    What struck me about this is I know an MD on staff at DMU, which during the first two years the podiatry students take the same classes as the other medical students, but they have more on top of “regular” medical school due to them having already declared a specialty AND the interactions I have had with some podiatrists that definitely have me beat on some general medical knowledge. Now my caveat is that I love my job in the cardio world and I don’t think they could beat me on my ECGs, but I do envy how varied their field is, definitely a full physician type of job, Haha to consider them as anything else is just obtuse, but some people will cling to their blinders forever! (and get left behind in the process)

  28. Chuck says:

    I looked this guy up on the internet and has a MD after his name so he must be a real doctor.

  29. judy says:

    After reading these posts, I can say that if I had a problem with my LE I would go to a podiatrist: they may not be able to read EKG’s, but if I compare time in training between podiatrist and ortho it would favor the ortho….however the ortho treats a broader range of conditions so arguably the podiatrist has spent more time on the more limited range of things he/she treats. I also imagine they might pay more attention to the biomechanics and function of the foot and hopefully the back in making their treatment decisions.
    That said, what about tumors? A family member has a mass in her ankle. Would it be better to go to a podiatrist or an orthopedist who specializes in cancer?? This is a real question I’m trying to help her answer

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