What is the difference between a podiatrist and an orthotist?

Last update: 8 March 2017

Podiatrists diagnose and treat foot ailments, i.e. traumas, deformities, malformations, and all types of foot lesions and diseases. He/she prescribes or makes orthotics, prescribes certain medications, performs minor surgery and oversees foot reeducation treatments.

In Quebec, podiatrists must have a degree in podiatric medicine and a license to practice podiatric medicine that is delivered through the Ordre des podiatres du Québec (Quebec’s Order of Podiatrists).

Orthotists design, make, adjust, repair and maintain prosthetics (artificial limbs) and orthotics (orthoses or corsets) that have been prescribed by a medical doctor or a podiatrist. They must have a college degree in orthotics and prosthetics (diplôme d’études collégiales en techniques d’orthèses et de prothèses orthopédiques), and can subscribe to Quebec’s Association des orthésistes, prothésistes et orthésistes du pied or Quebec’s Ordre des technologues professionnels du Québec, but are not required to do so.

Source (in French only): Protégez-vous.ca

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