Do I need a referral to see a podiatrist?

It depends. You typically do not need a referral to see a Podiatrist. Medicare and PPO type plans never require a referral. However, HMO type plans almost always require a referral. Podiatrists are regarded as specialists, so if your insurance company requires a referral to see a specialist, then you will need to get a referral from your primary care doctor. Just let them know you have a foot and ankle problem, and that you want to see a podiatrist. We are on most insurance plans, however if you are not sure, please call the office and we will verify what your insurance requires. If you have any concerns about your feet and/or ankles or you’re just after some advice, call our office today.

How long does it take to get an appointment?

With five podiatrists, a pedorthist, and five locations, we can typically offer appointments within 24 hours and we offer immediate care for medical emergencies.

Does Atlantic Foot and Ankle Specialists take my insurance?

Atlantic Foot and Ankle is affiliated with most insurances and Medicare. We accept Medicaid only as a secondary form of insurance. We would recommend that you call the number on the back of your insurance care to confirm your benefits before your appointment. As a courtesy to all our patients, we have experienced insurance verifiers on staff that can check your benefits for you.

What hospitals or Surgery Center are your practices affiliated with?

We are associated with St. Joseph’s/Chandler, Memorial, and East Georgia Regional Medical Hospitals.

How often should I change my orthotics?

While orthotic devices can last anywhere from 5 to 10 years, it is recommended that you get a biomechanical exam every 2 years to assure your orthotics are still doing the best job at supporting your feet. As we age our body goes through natural changes, like the tightening of ligaments, which can change the structure of the foot, this is why it is a good idea to periodically have you feet and orthotics evaluated.

Should I see a podiatrist or an orthopedic surgeon for my foot problem?

You should see a podiatrist if you have foot or ankle problems. Both podiatrists and orthopedists take care of problems dealing with the bones. The difference between the two is that the orthopedic surgeon treats all the bones of the human body and the podiatrist specializes in the bones of the foot and ankle. For example, you have two mechanics, one specialize in tires and the other specialize in transmissions. You have a problem with your transmission, now even though both are mechanics and have been trained as such, you are not going to take your car to the tire guy, you’re going to take it to the guy that works on transmissions all day every day. It’s the same when it comes to your feet and ankles. You want someone that looks at feet and ankles all day, every day. A podiatrist sees and treats feet and ankles, all day, every day.

I sprained my ankle, how should I treat this?

An easy home treatment and a great way to remember this treatment is “RICE”. ( R ) est: If the pain is continual, rest is an important way to prevent further injury- DO NOT “work out the injury” ( I )ce: For a 20-minute cycle apply a towel- wrapped ice pack to the sprain (this is a cycle of 20 minute on and 20 minutes off). This cycle is used to reduce the swelling. ( C )ompression: To help restrict the swelling wrap an elastic bandage tightly around the injury. This should be re-wrapped every 3-4 hours to make sure compression is firm. ( E )levation: Elevate the foot and ankle to be even with your heart. Elevate the foot or ankle with a pillow. This aids fluid away from the injury. Make sure to see a podiatrist as soon as possible after the injury to make sure the sprain isn’t more severe!

How do I know if I have fungus on my nails?

Fungus on the nails tends to show up as a darker yellow; it is quite often blackish and a thick discoloration of the nail. Fungus can also be shown as white spots on the nail. As the fungus advances the nail can get thick and more brittle.

My heels hurt. What can I do about the pain?

Plantar Fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain. Plantar Fasciitis affects 7 out of 10 people. Plantar Fasciitis is the inflammation of the plantar fascia ligament on the bottom of the foot where it attaches to the heel. In some cases pain can be avoided by wearing a shoe with a good arch support (insert) and taking Advil as specified by your doctor. If you are still in pain, your podiatrist may prescribe a stronger anti-inflammatory or other treatment such as ESWT shockwave therapy. Here are Atlantic Foot and Ankle we have been extremely successful with the ESTW shock wave therapy!

What is the treatment course for ESWT Therapy for heel pain or Achilles Tendon pain?

This is a noninvasive treatment and can eliminate heel pain in as few as 6 treatments. Treatment sessions are only 7 minutes in duration. We schedule your first 3 treatments for 3 consecutive weeks, then we take an ultrasound to see the progress. Many patients get pain relief in as little as 8-10 days after the first treatment. The ESWT is a cash pay service, we do not submit ESWT treatment to your insurance company.

Should I have my bunions fixed or just leave them alone?

If shoes are regularly hurting your feet, you have discomfort, or you can no longer perform the activities you enjoy to do because of bunion pain, you should see a podiatrist to get an x-ray and discuss your treatment options. We have x-ray rooms in all of our offices.

How long is the recovery from bunion surgery:

This recovery varies depending on a few factors. These factors are the procedure chosen to correct the bunion, the patient’s age, and medical status. The procedure is out-patient and patients are advised to rest and elevate their foot for the first few weeks following surgery. Patients will have to wear a surgical boot and then transition to a gym shoe once sufficient healing has occurred.

My heels are dry and cracked. Is there a solution?

The problem of dry cracked heels is caused mainly from heredity. Heredity is something we can’t change, however your doctor can help control and treat the problem. If your heel is cracked and bleeding, it is vital to see a podiatrist because any open wound can become infected. If you are only dealing with dryness and cracking, applying a good moisturizing cream at least twice a day can help. Try sleeping with socks on at night after your apply cream to your feet; this will help soften your skin. We have an over the counter product, Kerasal, that is great for dry, cracked feet! After the dry skin is softened, use a pumice stone to remove the exfoliated skin. If you are finding that these solutions are not working, your podiatrist will have several prescription cream options.

What is causing the pain under the balls of my feet?

Metatarsalgia, the pain under the ball of the foot, can be caused by many things. These causes include: torn ligaments, injured nerves, inflamed joints, or a small fracture. Your podiatrist will be able to diagnose the cause of your pain and start you out on the right treatment plan.

Are warts contagious?

Warts are caused by a viral infection. They are contagious if direct contact is made with them. The viruses that cause warts live in warm, moist environments and may be transferrable on moist towels, at spas, pools, locker rooms, etc. A helpful way to avoid catching warts on your feet is to wear footwear in these environments.

How do I avoid ingrown nails?

Ingrown nails can be avoided by trimming your nails and rounding the corners of your nails using a file. Toe nails should ALWAYS be trimmed using a nail clipper. Do NOT tear your toe nails or you will increase the chances of developing an ingrown toenail.

My child has flat feet. Should I seek treatment?

There are many people that have flat feet and never face any problems with their feet. If there is a family history of flat feet with family members needing surgery or having bunions, hammertoes, or other foot conditions, then YES, your child should be treated. This does NOT necessarily mean surgery. Your child might need something as minimal as a good insert recommended by their podiatrist. The BEST thing to do is to have your child’s foot examined, then you will be able to go from there to find the best treatment option.

Does your practice treat ankle pain or fractures?

Yes, here at Atlantic Foot and Ankle all of our Physicians are Board Certified in the care of the foot and ankle.

Which doctors specialize in the care of children and infants?

All of our physicians treat pediatric patients, but specifically Dr. Robitaille specializes with children and infant care.

Does your office take walk- ins?

Yes, we do accept walk-ins. If you are a walk-in though you might have a wait time due to the number of patients we are seeing that day.

Does your office take emergency appointments?

Yes, we do accept emergency appointments. All medical emergencies are important to us. If we are unable to treat you we will refer you out to receive the proper care.

Can you take x-rays in your office?

Yes, we have digital x-ray systems in most of our offices. Digital x-ray systems are in the Savannah, Statesboro, and New River offices. If needed, we can refer you to someone through our referral network.

Athlete’s Foot

How can I prevent Athlete’s foot?

Keep feet dry, especially between the toes. Change socks regularly (daily), sweaty feet may require you to change socks twice daily. Wear sandals or waterproof shoes in public places. If you are at risk, use anti-fungal powder or spray daily. Wear well ventilated shoes. Change shoes if exposed to moisture (allows them to dry out -shoes and feet).

How do I treat Athlete’s foot?

If you suspect you have Athlete’s foot, try an over the counter anti-fungal medication (powder, lotion, cream, or spray). In addition, follow advice in the prevention category. If condition does not respond, prescription medication may be required, either topical or oral. In addition, some bacterial infections or skin disorders may mimic the appearance of Athlete’s foot. These conditions will require alternative therapy, as they will not respond to anti-fungal medication. If condition worsens or you are concerned and do not want to attempt treatment yourself, call and make an appointment.

What causes Athlete’s foot?

Athlete’s foot is caused by a fungus infection. It typically develops between the toes and/or the sole of the foot. Symptoms may include burning, itching, pain, or stinging. Associated signs may include excessive moisture between the toes, smelliness, redness, flaking, scaling, or dryness. For some, blisters may develop or the toenails may be involved.


I am an active runner. How often do I need to replace my running shoes?

It is important that you do not wait until you have an injury to change your running shoes. As a rule of thumb, a running shoe should be replaced between 300-500 miles. For example, If you run 15 miles per week, that would mean changing your shoes every 6 months. There are other factors that are also important when considering when to change your shoes, to name a few: the type of runner you are and the presence of wear on the bottom of your shoe, the type of surface you run on (concrete or pavement vs track ), your body weight and pre-existing maladies (knee and hip pain) will require you to change your shoes more frequently. In addition, if you noticed abnormal wear pattern on your shoes, this may indicate biomechanical/ structural pathology that would require orthotic devices in addition to good running shoes.


Is my information private?

We do our utmost to secure all our information and keep it within our organization. We do not sell, share or distribute any email addresses or customer information to anyone at anytime, ever. See our privacy policy for more details.

Is my transaction information secure?

Yes, it is. Our web server is secured using GeoTrust SSL Certificate. This ensures that all information you send to us via the World Wide Web will be encrypted.