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Is a Referral Needed to See a Podiatrist?

When dealing with pain, the frustration and anger that accompany it make hard to think about insurance benefits. This is particularly applicable when the pain is in the feet and ankles, where your movement is restrained as well. Diagnosing and treating the condition immediately is necessary to prevent the issue from worsening. This begs the question, “How fast can I see a podiatrist, and is a referral needed?”

WHO IS A PODIATRIST?

Before contacting your primary care physician about a referral, you should know about podiatrist sand how they can help. Podiatrists are medical experts who specialize in the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of medical conditions affecting the feet and lower limbs, including ankles. These diseases include plantar fasciitis and other deformities of the toes.

Podiatrists use different techniques, including drugs and in-office treatments, to heal their patients and avert future occurrences. They can also help with biomechanics, sports injuries, pediatrics, gerontology, arthritis and diabetes. Patients with gait and posture problems can even get treatment from a podiatrist.

To qualify as a podiatrist, they must finish an undergraduate degree in podiatry. They can go on to postgraduate medical school and complete medical and surgical training to become podiatric surgeons.

Common illnesses treated by a podiatrist:

IS REFERRAL NECESSARY?

In most situations, you do not need a referral to meet a podiatrist. However, patients who need a form of discount or reimbursement — for example, those with Medicare or health insurance plans — will need to get a referral from their physician before booking an appointment. Whatever the care is, it is advisable to consult your doctor first, since you may require X-rays or scans before meeting the podiatrist.

UP ON YOUR FEET!

Studies around the world reveal that almost every adult experience a form of feet pain. This could be a result of footwear, toenail fungus, normal wear and tear and preexisting conditions like diabetes or cardiac disease, poor circulation or blisters. Ideally, you should have your feet examined regularly by a podiatrist to curb walking, gait or posture defects. The podiatrist can suggest the best shoes, ointments, lotion or tips to keep your feet working correctly.

WHEN WOULD I SEE A PODIATRIST?

There are a few apparent signs that you may require a referral to the podiatrist immediately. The first sign is if you are dealing with pain that has persisted for a long time, particularly if you are not putting pressure on the feet. Also, you need to consider your heels closely, since they are susceptible to different types of pathogens.

If the pain or heel injury fails to disappear after a few days, despite using ice packs and painkillers like ibuprofen, then you need to make an appointment. Finally, if you notice rashes, chaffing, discolorations or odor, then you need immediate medical attention. It could be the symptom of a severe infection or fungus development or even an underlying autoimmune issue.

FINAL NOTE

If you have been referred to a podiatrist, you should book an appointment immediately before the condition worsens.

Request an appointment here: https://footdoctorinsanjose.com or call Leonard Greenwald, D.P.M. at (408) 827-9483 for an appointment in our San Jose office.

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