DPM vs. MD

According to the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons:

• There are just over 6,300 ACFAS members, compared to 1,800 foot AOFAS members.

• A recent landmark study from Duke University’s Department of Economics proved the value and cost-effectiveness of podiatric care on a large complicated diabetic population, and showed that lower extremity amputations can be significantly reduced when a patient with a diabetic foot complication visits a podiatric physician within one year of diagnosis. Early visits and care result in a 69 percent lower chance of ulcer development and a 23 percent lower chance of developing cellulitis or a Charcot foot.

• The American Medical Association (AMA) has stated, “Colleges of podiatric medicine offer a core curriculum similar to that in other schools of medicine.”

• In all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, podiatric foot and ankle surgeons are licensed as physicians to treat patients independently and without supervision.

• The Joint Commission lists DPMs, MDs and DOs equally in their definition of “independent licensed practitioner.”

• Podiatric medical students must take the MCAT exam to gain admission to a podiatric medical school. Following completion of a four-year podiatric medical school, DPMs must pass the three-part exams of the National Board of Podiatric Medical Examiners.

• Today podiatric medical and surgical residencies are three years.

• All Fellows of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons have passed the rigorous board certification process of the American Board of Foot and Ankle Surgery. There is no such certification process for orthopedists who declare themselves foot and ankle surgeons.

• DPM foot and ankle surgeons are entrenched in mainstream medicine. They serve alongside MD and DO colleagues in hospitals and long term care facilities, on faculties of medical schools, as commissioned officers in the Armed Forces and the U.S. Public Health Service.

• DPM foot and ankle surgeons are a valuable part of the healthcare services in hundreds of prestigious medical centers, including but not limited to Harvard, Yale, Dartmouth, Cornell, UCLA, UCSF, University of Florida, University of Arizona, University of Chicago and Georgetown University.

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