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Getting Used to the smell/jobs/procedures/transfering

Discussion in 'Podiatry Students' started by V4viet, Feb 22, 2006.

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  1. V4viet

    V4viet Member 5+ Year Member

    Feb 19, 2006
    Hi guys, let me start out by saying that EVERYONE on this forum are the nicest people I've ever met online. We're all strangers yet we feel so much like a close medical profession family. Here is the deal guys, I shadowed a podiatrist today and I saw a lot of ingrown nailes, and diabetic feet, one fungus.. They all seemed very interesting but i can't get over the smell? Do you guys think that eventually we'll get use to the smell? I feel a little bit gross about working with the feet as of right now but dont get me wrong I would love to help these people out w/ their problems just that i dont know if you guys all started out like me or not. Please i need some feedback.
    1)Did you ever feel gross?
    2)How did you get over it?
    3)Do you feel like you're just a high paid pedicurist?

    Also I was talking about jobs wise w/ my podiatrist and he said it take a couple of years to land on your feet ( hahah funny about the feet part) anyway I was wondering what you guys know about the jobs wise and solo vs. group and advantages/disadvantages.

    My last question is that if one decided to transfer from pod school to DO/MD schools. Is that possible later on during the road? and if so is that hard? and also I want to do mostly the surgical parts of podiatry and my podiatrist said that's not usually the case. He said one doesn't usually do a lot of surgercal procedures. He said most of the time is just cleaning the feet.
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  3. jsh

    jsh Junior Member

    Dec 9, 2005
    well...i really hope you know what you're getting into. i think no matter what medical profession you get into (i.e. being a gyno + obgyn, surgeons, docs that gives colonoscopy tests, dentists, even physical therapist (i heard a not so pretty story about that one (curious? write me), but that's just to name a few), you'll have to deal with things that aren't pleasant (podiatry being one of them). I would sorta hope by now that people who decide to get into the medical profession have at least watched lots of discovery health to develop a stomach for this stuff and as undergrads, took enough bio/chem labs to smell the worse of the worse.

    So do think it over about all this medical stuff...it ain't pretty and will never be. you don't want to waste 4 years to do something you'll hate.
  4. dpmgrad

    dpmgrad Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    May 17, 2005
    In general, if you decide to leave podiatry school for DO/MD schools, most of the American DO/MD schools do not accept any of the course work that you did at the Podiatry school. You will basically have to apply to DO/MD schools as a first year. The only possible exception would be Des Moines University and AZPOD where they are actually in the same basic science classes as the DO students. Perhaps, DMU students can comment on possibility of DPM student from DMU getting into DMU DO program as an advance standing student. My recommendation to you is that make sure that you are actually interested in podiatry before you commit yourself to podiatry school. Remember, podiatry school is not a substitute for MD/DO school.

    I am also going to answer your latter question about you being a podiatrist doing mostly surgical procedures only and doing very little conservative foot care. If you think that when you get done with you residency training and you are going to be doing mainly surgical procedures and doing very little routine / conservative foot care, you are very misguided about the podiatry profession. Yes, there are a few podiatrists in the US that do a lot of surgical procedures and do less of the routine, conservative foot care. However, these podiatrsts are older podiatrists who have been practicing many years and have developed a great referral base for surgery from other podiatrists, PCP, and orthopedic surgeons. It is also NOT true that by joining an orthopedic group that you will do mainly surgical procedures and very little routine / conservative foot care. Remember, when you join an orthopedic group, you are still a DPM. People will still come to you for routine foot care or conservative foot care because DPM renders comprehensive foot and ankle care. The major benefit of joining an orthopedic group is that you have established a referral source for surgical procedures. Most of the podiatrists that I know that have high surgical volume in their practices would usually operate on the average of 2 - 2.5 days a week. The rest of the time are spent in the office seeing patients or seeing patients in the hospital or clinic. If you really do not want to do routine foot care (such as diabetic foot care, nail trimming, callus trimming), then you should not go into podiatry. You should go to MD/DO school and go for orthopedics instead. On a lighter note, in one of the Reconstructive Foot and Ankle courses for Orthopedic Surgeons that I attended last year, Dr. Armen Kelikian, one of the Foot and Ankle Orthopedic Surgeons, had mentioned that he has trimmed calluses from time to time in his office. :)
  5. Dr_Feelgood

    Dr_Feelgood Guest 10+ Year Member

    Feb 16, 2006
    At DMU, no classes transfer even though you sit next to DOs for all of the basic science courses. So I hope you know that you want to be a DPM before you except a position to any school. If not you might as well give me the $22, 000, cause you'll be giving that money away to whatever school you choose.
  6. V4viet

    V4viet Member 5+ Year Member

    Feb 19, 2006
    Oh dont worry guys i know that i want to be a podiatrist, however, I was just asking if there is a way to make a transition from dpm to do schools that's all because it's always good to knw that you have options. So Dr_Feelgood, at DMU , one can transfer to do but just start as a first year that's all right? that's all i needed to know. I like options in life but I mean being a podiatrist and going into 3rd world countries and helping out is awesome to me.
  7. dpmgrad

    dpmgrad Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    May 17, 2005
    A DPM student can NOT just transfer into the DO school. You need to apply to the DO school as a new applicant. Basically, you are starting the whole entire admission process over again. Just because a person gets into the DPM program at DMU, it does not guarantee that the person would get into the DO program at DMU.

    By the way, I am not sure if you are Vietnamese or not (judging from your v4viet username). There is a surgical mission to Vietnam. Currently, the foot and ankle orthopedic surgeons are invited to participate. You can read more about it on the aofas website.
  8. V4viet

    V4viet Member 5+ Year Member

    Feb 19, 2006
    That's awesome thank you so much.. can i go as a volunteer even though im not a podiatrist yet. For example during my first year as a pod student. Can I just go as a volunteer and help out as much as I can. As for transfering to DO. I know that you can't just transfer. But, do you have to take the mcat again or do you apply as a pod student? Thanks again
  9. doclm

    doclm Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Mar 22, 2005
    Farmington Hills, MI
    I believe that the only transition that a DPM can make if he/she wants to go the DO/MD route instead is going to the carribean for an accelerated 2yr MD or going to NOVA in FL for the DPM/DO degree (which I believe is a 2 yr). I know of a couple Podiatrists that claimed to "spear head" this program, however I think it will still be avaliable for a long time.

    As for surgical work within Podiatry, I have also heard a lot of old timers tell me that there is very little and limited surgical practice with DPM's. I really hope that things change in the future of Podiatry if it hasn't already. I really want to do a lot of foot/ankle surgery. However, doing surgery all the time would get old. I hope that Podiatry in the future has a well balance of procedures with a high volume referral base. What I really like about the profession is that you will visit with the patient about their problems, work out ways to fix them, fix them surgically or conservativly, and visit with the patient latter about rehabilitation. Generally your patients will be very appreciative of your services. I believe and hope this profession will be very rewarding for myself.

    As for income I am unsure about what to expect. From what I hear from a lot of people is that you wont get rich off Podiatry. But what is rich? I asked a DPM who I met at Mayo (who does general care and is a associate professor at the medical school) how much to expect if you work as your position here. He told me it ranges from 60k-150k. Personally I hope that the starting income would be greater for DPM's than 60k. I almost make that right now, and after taxes it does not warrant a lifestyle that I want to be stuck at the rest of my life tons of student loans. :eek:

    A comfortable range I personally want to shoot for would be 130-150K. With a business for tax write-offs that would be better yet. I have two pharm friends that make about 140k/year and last year they paid in about 50k because they were single with no kids. Trust me, income being either gross or net makes a huge difference.

    In reality what is the average income to expect as a DPM coming out of residency?

    Thanks for your input. :thumbup:
  10. "He said one doesn't usually do a lot of surgercal procedures. He said most of the time is just cleaning the feet."

    I'm not going to try to sell you on this profession.
    That is up to you and your own desires.

    Having said that, the truth of the matter is, if you don't want to clean feet, and you can afford NOT to.... don't.

    Refer those patients to another one who will. No one is going to force you to go to the nursing homes if you don't want to.

    As for me, I see it as kind of rewarding... I mean, those are humans who usually can't help their situation.

    They were once young and full of dreams and life... like you....

    Imagine how you would feel if you couldn't care for your own needs and your feet weren't being properly taken care of...

    Medicine is usually reserved for those in NEED.

    In my opinion, there is nothing gross about decreasing another human's suffering....

    Sure there are unfamiliar smells, body fluids etc, but there is also a sense of being a health care professional

    who actually gives a damn about patient X.
  11. JohnfootDr

    JohnfootDr Member 5+ Year Member

    Feb 6, 2006
    Clarion, PA
    I post pretty regularly on a firearms board (with several other Doctors of various specialties).

    The OB/Gyn on there says the worst part about dealing with his patients is getting past the stinky feet in the stirrups--he's use to the other smells....

    I get asked all the time "how do you work with feet...the are gross"...(usually by younger patients). If Male, I reply "Could have been worse, I could have been a Colo-Rectal guy", if female ".....could have been an Ob/Gyn".

    Do you think that the general surgeon who has to do bowel resections, Ob/Gyn who has to deal with BV, etc. doesn't have to deal with smells all the time?

    Hell--nothing is better than that rotten pumpkin smell of Gas Gangrene (means someone is going to get some fun {ok, fun for me} surgery).


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