What is Radiology?
Radiologists are physicians who work with diagnostic imaging, such as x-rays and CT scans, or treatments that involve radiation. At first glance, these two fields may not seem related. However, many modern imaging techniques involve the use of radiation. There are also several different types of radiologist, including those that specialize in images and those that provide radiation treatment.
Diagnostic radiologists use medical imaging for diagnosing disease. Imaging procedures (such as x-rays, ultrasounds, and MRIs) use energy in the form of sound or radiation to create pictures of internal organs and structures.
Interventional radiologists use imaging for guiding certain minimally invasive medical procedures. A good example of this is the use of x-ray to guide catheters during angioplasty and the placement of stents in narrowed arteries.
Nuclear radiology involves the use of radioactive medication to diagnose or treat disease. Nuclear radiologists use medication that contains very small, safe amounts of radioactive material that can be detected by special machines. This allows them to gather information about how well the body is working. They can also use radioactive medications to treat certain illnesses, such as an overactive thyroid.
Radiation therapy or radiation oncology is the branch of radiology which uses radiation to treat cancer. The radiation is given at a higher dose, but it is very specifically targeted so that it only affects cancer cells.
Radiation, whether used in imaging or for treatment, is a powerful tool. Radiologists have the training and knowledge to use it safely.
What is Podiatry?
Podiatry is the medical specialty that deals with injuries and diseases of the foot, ankle, and related structures of the leg. Caring for feet may seem simple at first glance, but podiatry combines elements of sports medicine, wound care, diabetic care, and pediatrics into one specialty.
Podiatrists examine and treat many minor conditions in their office. They may perform surgery at a hospital, and they may refer patients to other professionals for physical therapy or orthotics if needed.
Some of the conditions commonly seen by podiatrists include:
Sprains and fractures
Heel pain and heel spurs
Ingrown or infected toenails
Corns and calluses
Structural issues of the foot
Pain in the feet and ankles is often neglected or seen as a normal part of daily life by patients, but keeping your feet healthy is a great way to maintain your mobility into old age. A podiatrist can help you keep moving comfortably.
Orthopedic surgeons, sometimes just called orthopedists, are surgical doctors of the musculoskeletal system. They work to keep your body active and in motion by treating problems with your bones, joints, tendons and muscles. The most frequently treated disorder seen by orthopedic surgeons is osteoarthritis, a common “wear-and-tear” problem where the cartilage that cushions the ends of the bones wears down, causing friction and pain. Orthopedic surgeons might also see patients for bone and joint deformities, amputation, infections of the bone and joint, overuse injuries, or nerve compression.
Orthopedic surgeons can order tests such as blood work and x-rays to get a clearer picture of the issue. Depending on the illness or injury, more than one different form of treatment may be used. Treatment may include:
Surgery, such as fusing bones together to increase stability, or replacing a joint
Medication, such as pain medication or steroids to promote healing
Casts, splints, or orthotics (devices such as braces or shoe inserts to support the body)
Physical therapy, a kind of treatment using exercise, stretching, heat, and massage to heal the body
Exercise, stretching, movement, and use of the affected part
Orthopedic surgeons also work to prevent injuries and slow the progression of disease in their patients. They educate patients on ways to prevent future injuries, and they treat illness in order to prevent further damage to bones or joints that may be affected by disease. The goal of an orthopedic surgeon is to help their patients restore movement and regain an active life.