Why Do Orthopedic Surgeons Hate Podiatrists?

With its 26 bones, 33 joints, and more than 100 muscles, tendons, and ligaments, the foot is one of the skeletal system’s most intricately designed structures. Nearly 25% of all the bones in your body are in your foot alone.

Specialists in the care of the foot and ankle include podiatrists and orthopedic surgeons. You might be wondering who to see for treatment if you have a foot or ankle issue. How do you decide which person is right for you?

Conveniently, orthopedic and podiatric specialists are now available under one roof at the new Foot and Ankle Center of Harvard Medical Faculty Physicians in Dedham. There the specialists work together to coordinate your care so that you can access a greater variety of treatments and a more thorough diagnosis.


Orthopaedics is a branch of medicine that focuses on musculoskeletal injuries, illnesses, and their diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation, and prevention. Orthopedic foot and ankle surgeons undergo an extra year of training for complex foot and ankle repair following postgraduate orthopedic resident training.

Orthopedic doctors for the foot and ankle frequently treat the following conditions:

  • both tendinosis and Achilles tendinitis
  • Sprains, stress fractures, and broken bones
  • Osteoarthritis 
  • torn ligaments
  • Lisfranc harm (midfoot injury to ligaments and bones)
  • Foot pain from metatarsalgia (ball of your foot)

Orthopedic doctors will treat complex lower extremity ailments along with the rest of your body because some foot and ankle issues are caused by knee, hip, or lower back issues.


The focus of a podiatrist is the foot and ankle from the first day of podiatric medical college and residency. “Podiatrists treat the bones, soft tissues, and bones of the foot and ankle in addition to treating skin diseases and improper lower extremity mechanics,”

Podiatrists frequently treat the following conditions:

  • joint illnesses, instability, discomfort, and arthritis
  • Ingrown toenails and calluses
  • sores that recur frequently due to diabetes or other disorders
  • issues with the feet (bunions, hammertoes)
  • collapsed arches
  • bone spurs, neuromas, plantar fasciitis, and heel discomfort

Podiatrists and orthopedic surgeons are both capable of performing both surgical and non-surgical treatments for foot and ankle disorders. Generally speaking, it is advisable to select the medical professional with whom you feel the most at ease or who has the greatest experience treating your specific problem.

Orthopedic surgeons despise podiatrists for five reasons.

1. Orthopedic surgeons must complete six years of residency, but podiatrists only need to complete three. Yet despite possessing less experience than orthopedic surgeons, podiatrists treat ankle and calcaneal fractures. About 10-15% of podiatrists likely have the same expertise as orthopedic surgeons whenever it comes to treating ankle and calcaneal fractures. Most people lack the necessary training.

2. People lie when they claim that it isn’t always about money. The truth is that having podiatrists around harms the orthopedic doctor and vice versa. Other than the foot and ankle, there is no rivalry between orthopedic surgeons throughout the rest of the body. It’s a fact.

There are so many incompetent podiatrists. If a nearby podiatrist started selling supplements to treat neuropathy and providing in-office physical therapy, wouldn’t an orthopedic surgeon roll their eyes? They would 

3.  Everything in life ultimately comes full circle. Podiatrists and orthopedic surgeons belong to different cliques. Life has always been and will always be high school. For no other reason than the fact that they go by a different username and are different, some orthopedic surgeons dislike podiatrists.

4. Many orthopedic surgeons have been required to clean up the damage left behind by podiatrists. happens frequently. You would be furious too if you were forced to correct some podiatry errors.

Podiatrists are not fakers, but their scope of practice is severely constrained. All of a podiatrist’s training focuses on the lower limbs (everything below the knee, basically). They are restricted to the foot in other states.

5. In an effort to increase their clientele, podiatrists frequently go beyond their scope of practice and attempt to cure problems with a sprain. A podiatrist gave me a poor diagnosis, which cost me a lot of money in terms of training. There shouldn’t have been a problem if I had gone right to an orthopedic.

Are Podiatrists Capable of Operating?

A podiatrist is a medical specialist who focuses on the diagnosis and therapy of abnormal problems affecting the feet and lower limbs. A podiatrist is specifically educated to be a doctor of podiatric medicine 

A broken foot may be treated by a podiatrist.

Despite the fact that few podiatrists conduct surgery, at Podiatry Associates in the Baltimore, Maryland area, they treat fractures, broken feet, broken toes, and broken ankles among other foot and ankle conditions.

Their podiatrists are skilled in performing cutting-edge surgical procedures, such as traumatic procedures for the rehabilitation of broken toes, foot injuries, toe fractures, and arthritis in the foot or ankle.

Does a podiatrist operate on the ankle?

The most frequent injuries that podiatrists or foot specialists treat are lower limb fractures or injuries, which may require ankle surgery. For instance, lateral ankle ligament repair or reconstruction may be required if a patient has a history of persistent ankle instability.


Although orthopedic surgeons and podiatrists may specialize in distinct fields and have various types of training, it is not true or fair to generalize that all orthopedic surgeons despise podiatrists. Although there may be organizational rivalries or conflicts between various medical specializations, these are not always present and do not necessarily translate into animosity. In order to give their patients the best care possible, orthopedic surgeons and podiatrists work together in the medical profession.

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