People tend not to think too much about their feet—that is, until something goes wrong. And then it’s all they tend to think about. In many ways, the same general axiom applies to those tasked with treating issues associated with the feet and ankles: Most people don’t keep their podiatrists top of mind in the medical pecking order—until they need them.
But that’s fine with Dr. Leonard Vekkos. After all, it wasn’t the spotlight that drew the Woodridge resident to podiatry in the first place, and it isn’t what keeps him excited about his practice at the Foot & Ankle Wellness Center at Seven Bridges more than three decades later. His joy comes instead from the ability to have such a quick and dramatic effect on his patients’ immediate comfort and well-being, aided in many cases by recent podiatric advancements such as injections of amniotic membrane and stem cells to treat chronic conditions, such as heel pain, that might otherwise require surgical intervention.
“Many patients come in with significant pain and disability, and immediately after treatment they’re able to walk out of the office significantly improved,” he says. “To be able to make such a difference in such a short period of time is one of the things that I find so satisfying about podiatry.”
Photograph by Michael Hudson