March 30th is celebrated as National Doctors’ Day to commemorate all the contributions that physicians have made to help improve the lives of individuals and of the community. In the US, the holiday was the idea of Eudora Brown Almond, wife of a prominent Georgian doctor. The date was chosen based on the anniversary of the use of general anesthesia by Crawford W. Long when Dr. Long painlessly removed a tumor from a patient’s neck using diethyl ether in 1842.
We’d like to use this day to recognize one of our own doctors here at Healthpointe who helps patients every day, even with the small things. Let’s take a moment to learn about a doctor who cares about his patients’ well-being and what drives him to continue helping those in need. Below is a short interview with Podiatric Surgeon, Ryan Culver, DPM.
What made you decide to become a doctor?
I’d always been interested in the Sciences, in helping people, and in working in a hands-on profession. Those three criteria combined into an interest in Medicine and Surgery and ultimately led me to where I am today.
When did you first set your sights on becoming a doctor? Did you ever second-guess your decision because of the amount of schooling?
I wouldn’t say I second guessed my decision, but definitely I did think long and hard about the amount of school (and financial aid!) required to complete my training.
If so, what motivated you to push through?
Each class, anatomy lab, and new surgical experience was more interesting than the one before and made me more and more excited for the career ahead.
What made you decide to choose podiatry as a specialty?
Podiatry is a specialty with a lot of variety. I treat kids, adults, elderly, trauma patients, athletes, and tackle issues with all body systems as they pertain to the feet and ankles. Surgeries include everything from fixing Bunions and Hammertoes to reconstructing Flatfeet and fixing ankle fractures and Achilles tendon ruptures. The diversity and complexity of the pathology I get to treat make each day challenging and interesting and helped me decide on a career as a Podiatric Surgeon.
What do you think makes a terrific doctor?
I think a terrific doctor is someone who listens well and strives to understand each patient as an individual. Someone who is constantly willing to learn new things and treats their patients and co-workers as they would want to be treated.
What do you enjoy about your job?
I enjoy they ability to interact with patients directly, to work with my hands, and to get to be there from the initial injury through the treatment to the final visit when the patient is finally healed and able to return to their normal life. Seeing a patient leave the clinic healed is one of the best parts of the job.
Tell me about a positive experience you’ve had with a patient that stands out to you.
Over the past year, I’ve had multiple patients with Achilles tendon ruptures. These injuries really affect patients emotionally due to the suddenness of the injury and the impact on the patient’s life. Most of these patients are highly active, athletic people and when they suffer an acute Achilles tendon rupture, their life comes to a screeching halt. Suddenly, they can’t work or play sports, and many times need surgery to fix the tendon. I always make a point to take extra time to reassure these patients that everything will be okay and that they will be able to regain their ability to walk, to run, and to play sports again. As the treatment progresses, I get to watch their confidence grow as they regain the ability to stand and walk, to run and jump, to sprint, and to return to work and the sports they love. As a Podiatric Surgeon, I am fortunate to be a part of this process and seeing these patients transform from afraid and anxious to empowered and courageous by the end of their rehab always stands out to me as an especially positive experience.
What’s great about being a doctor here at Healthpointe?
Being a Podiatric Surgeon at Healthpointe over the last 8 years has been a fantastic experience. The variety of patients we see has exposed me to much more pathology than I would see in a solo or small group practice. I have learned new skills, made new friends, and had many invaluable experiences that have helped me grow in my career and in life. Each year seems better than the last and I am forever indebted to my colleagues and staff at Healthpointe for making this such a great place to practice.
Take this time to tell your doctor thank you for what they’ve helped you with, large or small. Whether they’ve painlessly removed a tumor from your neck, helped you after a car accident, or even if they’ve just advised you on how to lower your blood pressure. Click here to read about another one of our doctors from last year’s National Doctors’ Day or to schedule an appointment with one of our doctors, you can call (888) 824-5580 or click here.