I'm looking for a surgeon, and am trying to find the "best" in my area (Chicagoland). Every doctor I come across online ofcourse says they specialize in bunions and foot and ankle reconstruction... and I doubt that one doctor would refer me to another that isn't in his practice. So my question... how did you guys all find your surgeons? Just by word of mouth?
I asked my PCP (whom I trust implicitely and who is listed as one of the best internists in B'ham) who was the best foot surgeon in town. He gave me a name and then I researched him - online, asked other people, etc. Turns out he is one of the best in the country. Ask any sports med doc if they know who Andrews and Lemak in B'ham are and they will gush over them. My doc was the foot guy in thei practice when they were together. (Brett Favre was just here seeing Andrews about his arm)
So, if I were you in Chicago, I'd find out who the Bulls and the Bears use and go see those folks. Or, I'd come to Birmingham and see Dr. John Gould at UAB Orthopedics!
Definitely, you want someone who is either an orthopedist who is board-certified foot and ankle surgeon, or (for some problems) a podiatric surgeon with extensive experience. (Do NOT go with a podiatrist who is not a podiatric surgeon.)
Your family doctor is indeed a good place to start, as are teaching hospitals in your area.
Last edited by janewhite1; 05-17-2009 at 07:03 PM.
I'll look up the other pro sports teams around here and see who they use.
I have actually seen the doctor for the Bulls and Sox, but unfortunately was not to impressed. He sent me for a bone scan and MRI, both of which were conducted poorly (I don't blame him, but other doctors that saw the scans later on said they were almost unreadable and would have ordered re-scans). Anyways, he would spend very little time with us and said he didn't see anything in the scan so that there was nothing wrong with me, and I should just take Advil. Each time we saw him at two different offices we waited over 1.5 hours for him to spend 5 minutes with me. He ended up referring me to a podiatrist who we also had an unpleasant experience with (uncertain answers, billing for procedures I never had done, etc).
My regular ortho referred me to the Foot and Ankle specialist ortho. If you have a regular ortho you may want to start there. A good ortho should have no problem referring to someone with more experience and/or training in a particular area. Whoever you are referred to check out his experience and education, as in where he did his foot and ankle fellowship, etc. My surgeon did his at Harvard Medical School. As I know Harvard is difficult to get into, this told me a lot about his ranking in his class, grades, etc.
You know the old joke: "what do you call the medical student who finished last in his class?...Doctor". Pretty scary when you think about it.
don't be afraid to ask a lot of questions. Best of luck to you.
Cj1986 yes i have had surgery performed by him twice now. He performed an oats allograft to my talor dome in apr 2008, and just couple days ago he scoped my ankle again to clean out scar tissue. My OCD was very severe so i will never be 100 percent healed. I think he has done an excellent job. I have seen three of the top ankle specialists in the chicago area, and kelikian by far has the most experience. The other two were(Dr. Michael Pinzer from loyola, and Dr. Steven Haddad he works for the Illinois Bone and Joint clinic.) You will be fine if you choose any of these docs. Good luck to you and let me know if i can help you any further. Jflash
I tried calling the Northwestern Orthopedic Instititute and it took a while to get a person on the phone, but finally got through. I asked to speak to either Dr. kelikian or Dr. Kodros, explaining that I wasn't looking for medical advice over the phone, just don't want to waste my time or his if its not a condition he is real experienced with. They said the doctor was too busy to do phone calls (which I expected, but couldnt hurt to ask). They directed me to Dr. Kodros's head nurse saying that she might be able to advise me, so we'll see.
I wish there was a way to contact the doctor and speak with them ahead of time. I don't want to waste the time or money to see a doctor that won't be able to help me.
Cj1986, I started in PT before I ever had surgery and I really trust my PT and asked her who she would recommend. She gave me a name of who she thought I should call first and when I was apprehensive about the surgery even gave me a name of who she thought I could talk to that wouldn't necessarily just say what the other person said because of professional courtesy....Even if you call up a PT place and ask to talk to someone, or if you know any PTs...I was really happy with the surgeon I ended up with and I think it makes sense that the PTs would know who is good to see because they get patients from all over and see who ends up with the best results. Good Luck!
JFlash... I hadn't heard back from Dr. Kodros at Northwestern, so I called today and left a message for Dr. Kelikian's assistant/nurse/whoever she was. She called back within 5 minutes which really impressed me a great deal. I explained my situation (23 year old female, very active, born with flat feet, tore my arch, suspected partial tear in PTT, and severe heel pain). I told her I just wanted to know if he has experience in treating this in someone my age and with my active lifestyle. She said it was a common problem and that she thinks he could help me. I'm going to set up an appointment within the next few weeks and see if he can help me out.