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Foot & Ankle Problems Message Board


Foot & Ankle Problems Board Index


I'm not an expert in bunion surgery, but I did have a plantar fasciotomy that wasn't done well and am having surgery in a couple weeks to correct it. I know how confusing it can be when there are differing opinions and the decision is put into your hands!

I don't know how to look up your doctor, except for going to your state's website. At mine, I can look up anyone who needs a liscense to work (teachers, doctors, DPMs, nurses, PAs, estheticians--anyone!) to make sure they are liscensed and whether or not they have any complaints against them/reprimands. You could also check podiatric sites to see if the surgeons are board-certified, which is a must. I guess you could ask for references, but I would think that is the same as when you give them out for job interviews-- you wouldn't give the names of people who would say horrible things, so they might be biased. ***** used to allow you to rate individual doctors, but now they have redone that part of the site and the reviews seem to have disappeared-- but it's worth checking.

I think a third opinion might be helpful, but do realize that there are many different ideas on medicine and at some point, you may need to make the decision that feels right to you. How to fix my problem is a little less ambiguous than other problems, so when I kept getting a different opinions, I realized I had to stop because it was just confusing me even more. There are many ways to find another referral who is good! I would try an orthopedic foot and ankle surgeon for a third opinion. (There is a liscensing board where you can locate surgeons in your area online.) I don't think podiatrists are terrible, but this is a different school of thought that may be helpful. In my case, my podiatrist was limited in what he could do to fix my problem, but the orthopedic surgeon had a bunch of ideas. Also, if you see a doctor that you really like, ask s/he for a referral. I adore my dermatologist, and he's sent me to my gynecologist, surgeon, and internist. After a frustrating physical therapy session, I called him up, explained my problem, and asked him what to do. He sent me to my surgeon, who is wonderful. But if you do that and don't like the referral, don't see them! Your health is more important than staying with someone you don't like. If all that fails, you could call the referral line of a local hospital. They'd refer you to any of their doctors, but they might have a good idea of who's well-respected in the community.

Finally, I would tend to (now) shy away from a doc who promises the world--less pain, short recovery, high results. Stupidly, I had my plantar fasciotomy when I was told that all I would lose if the procedure didn't work was 3 days on the couch and having to wear orthotics... not the case as I'm getting nerve damage and PF pain fixed in 2 weeks. Don't get me wrong, I think you need a positive doc, but not one who doesn't give you the entire picture. And IMO, go with someone who will address ALL your foot problems in one surgery if possible. It's hard enough to go through it once let alone two or three times!

I hope this helps! Let us know what you do.

--Karyn





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