When a foot or ankle is painful it can make daily activities difficult. You just want it to stop hurting. Dr. John Rachoy, a specialist in podiatry and foot and ankle surgery, understands these daily challenges and offers advanced techniques and treatments to get you back on your feet.
A specific technique that Dr. Rachoy is very excited about is a micro- or mini-incision bunionectomy that can help with one condition of the foot. A bunion is a deformity of the big toe joint that causes the great toe to deviate toward the second toe, resulting in a bony bump at the base of the big toe that becomes painful, swollen and inflamed. “Traditional bunion surgery involves a long incision on the skin and cutting of the tissues underneath. That often leads to joint stiffness, swelling and an unsightly scar on the skin. A mini-incision bunionectomy uses incisions that are barely visible. Also, because there is less tissue disruption there is less swelling, less pain and improved range of motion.
“Ultimately, this means a faster recovery and return to activity. Most patients are walking immediately after surgery and are in a gym shoe by four weeks,” says Dr. Rachoy.
He sees the advantage of less tissue disruption that minimal incision surgery offers and believes more surgery will be done this way in the future. He says that improved instrumentation allows this technique to have better outcomes than traditional techniques. Dr. Rachoy says he is fortunate to be one of a small group of surgeons from the Midwest, and the only one from Northwest Indiana, invited to learn this technique.
Dr. Rachoy also has a passion for wound care and foot and leg preservation. “Diabetes and its complications are limb- and life-threatening. Complications of diabetes include neuropathy, numbness of the feet and PAD (peripheral arterial disease). These conditions can cause non-healing ulcers or wounds that can get infected. Once infection sets in, amputation of part of the foot or leg may be needed.”
Dr. Rachoy has been working in a wound center for many years and is highly regarded as a specialist in the treatment of diabetic wounds and infections using skin grafts and advanced wound care modalities such as stem cells and amniotic tissue.
He uses a team approach by involving the expertise of infectious disease specialists, cardiologists and orthotists. “The goal is to restore quality of life by saving limbs and hopefully prevent additional infections,” Dr. Rachoy says.
The dedication to staying at the forefront of his specialty is evidenced in many areas of Dr. Rachoy’s practice. For patients with chronic heel pain from plantar fasciitis, he offers orthobiolologic treatments such as stem-cell injections and PRP (platelet- rich plasma) injections. In addition, advances in ankle replacement surgery, cartilage restoration and ligament reconstruction have proven to be very beneficial alternatives for some patients.
“I believe personal care is important to people. I treat every patient as if they are a family member, because every patient matters to me,” says Dr. Rachoy.
“It’s important to have patients understand what their condition is and how it’s being treated. That helps them know what to expect and eases their anxiety.” His manner with patients is pleasant and personable. “I keep it low stress, not so serious all the time. Yet I also want it to be educational.
I want my patients to feel comfortable and give them an opportunity to ask questions and be a partner in their treatment.”
Dr. Rachoy has been practicing podiatry for 19 years. He received his medical degree from School College of Podiatric Medicine and completed his residency at the North Chicago V.A. Medical Center and at St. Joseph Hospital in Chicago. He also completed a fellowship at Chicago Foot & Ankle Deformity Correction Center. He has been the residency director for the Franciscan Health Podiatric Surgical Residency program for 13 years. “Teaching residents and students is my way of giving back to the profession that has given me so much. It makes me very proud when I see my residents choosing to be leaders in their communities and provide good, quality health care.”
His practice is at the new North Point Orthopaedics facility in Munster. The state- of-the-art facility opened Nov. 16, offering quality care for all orthopedic needs, including physical therapy.
The practice also has six orthopedic doctors who treat the spine, hip, hand, shoulder, knee, sports- related injuries, pediatric orthopedics and more. There is also an orthopedic urgent care on-site that welcomes walk-in patients without appointments who can be seen in less than an hour.
North Point Orthopaedics is now at 9445 Calumet Ave. in Munster. Other locations are in Dyer, at 15900 W. 101st St., and in Crown Point, at 1505 S. Court St., Suite 101. For more information, call 219-836-1060.