• Dr. Magdalena Blasko, DPM

When Should I See a Podiatrist?

Well, the most obvious time to see a podiatrist is when you’ve injured your foot or your leg, or even if you have pain. This is the easy answer. But most of us are budget conscious, lead busy lives, and are inclined to think “it’ll go away on it’s own”. So this “easy” answer doesn’t work for us.



Our feet tend to hurt very late in life after years of carrying the weight of our bodies. Most of the time, people have problems in their lower back or with their knees and they go see a pain doctor, back doctor, or knee doctor. They have all of these symptomatic areas of their body treated, never thinking that the origin of their problem is actually in their feet. This makes it very important to have your feet checked out to avoid future complications with your lower extremities.



Why isn’t the internet enough to answer my questions?


The internet is a tremendous resource that has empowered patients to make informed decisions and shop around for the best provider before they even step foot inside an office.


The typical flow goes like this. You do research online to find out if you actually have a problem. The information and the advice given is in a very generic format or it’s at times contradictory. They claim to diagnose you with something that you might have, but the website does not say that you actually have a specific problem and that you need a particular treatment. How could it? This is why there is either a clause that advises you to consult a medical professional, or the information is phrased in a way that makes clear there is no guarantee.


A podiatrist has the knowledge, skill, and experience to give you the exact answer you need. But even if you do not have a podiatric problem, they will be able to take a look at you, can evaluate you, and guide you to the correct specialist if need be. If you had a legal question, you wouldn’t rely on the internet to give you legal advice, and the same thinking applies when having lower extremity issues.



I’m still not convinced that I need to see a doctor right now


There are a few reasons patients are hesitant to come see the doctor once they’ve identified they need one. A few of the reasons were listed above. We’ve found that most people are concerned about going to a podiatrist because they are unfamiliar with the office and its procedures. But actually it's very similar to your primary care doctor’s visits.


You will be checked in by our warm and friendly staff where you will provide your medical history. The podiatrist comes to evaluate you by asking you questions, examining your feet, and using all the information collected by our staff. You will get advice based on the diagnosis that our professionals assess you to have and treatments based on need and recommendation. As always, the patient is always in control of what treatments they undergo.


Treatments are usually twofold. They have to address your immediate problem or your immediate pain. The doctor will also give you advice on how to control the problem in the future to prevent you from needing to come in again if need be.



So what treatments can I expect?


Most people are concerned that seeing a podiatrist means immediate surgery to their lower extremities. But there are actually many treatments available that do not involve surgery. There are conservative and preventative treatments like physical therapy, localized injections, topical creams, medication, custom made inserts to correct the way you walk, and yes, if need be, a recommendation for surgery as a last resort.



Conclusion


Time and time again we see patients who have waited too long before coming into the office, which unfortunately required us to resort to much more drastic measures to take care of them. We don’t want that to be you. Please take a look at what services we offer and call or book online to schedule your appointment. We’re here to help and are committed to providing you with the highest quality of care possible. We hope to see you soon!

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Dr. Magdalena Blasko has been successfully healing patients in San Francisco and the surrounding communities for 20 years, frequently awarded "Best Podiatrist of the Year". Her approach to practice centers on patient education. She believes informed patients are better prepared to make decisions regarding their health and well-being. You can take advantage of all she has to offer in terms of preventative care by signing up for her membership programs.