Adena Health Focus January 27, 2017

Put Your Best Foot Forward

“A lot of doctors treat head to toe; we kind of start at the toe and work up!”

That’s how one of Adena’s newest providers, Certified Nurse Practitioner Courtney Thornsberry, describes her work in the Adena Bone and Joint Center. Since August 2016, Courtney has been working with patients to meet their foot care, and overall wellness needs.

A native of Portsmouth, Ohio, Thornsberry earned her degree in Nursing from Shawnee State University. She went on to receive her Masters as a Family Nurse Practitioner from the University of Cincinnati, and has cared for patients throughout southern Ohio. Thornsberry has an extensive background in intensive and critical care. Serving Podiatry patients is a way she is tying all of her training and experience together.

“I’m in a position now to really get to know my patients,” said Thornsberry. “With Adena Podiatry we work hard to get to know our patients, their families and their support systems. This helps us to work as a team in meeting their care needs, and to provide them with education so that everyone understands what is involved in the patient’s care.”

She adds, “Our appointments are typically 30 minutes long. We spend that time talking to patients about things like diabetes management and we really educate them on issues that could arise, and work to prevent those issues from occurring. But if they do have complications, we are here for them.”

During each visit, Adena’s podiatry caregivers give a comprehensive diabetic foot exam. They check for problems like loss of sensation, wounds, ulcerations, blood flow problems, or issues of the nail.

Part of Courtney’s education helps patients understand her role in their care. She knows the confusion patients may have when they see a nurse practitioner versus a doctor. Both diagnose, treat, and manage various health conditions, perform in-office procedures, and prescribe medications. The differences come in advanced levels of training and education. But patients should rest assured they are receiving the same level of quality and top-rated care when seeing an Adena nurse practitioner.

“Having nurse practitioners in Podiatry is a new wave over the last several years,” Thornsberry explained. “We do a lot of diabetic foot care, nail checks, wound care and follow-ups. This allows our physicians to focus on the surgeries and their more involved cases.”

Thornsberry jokes that patients often tell her they understand that podiatry and foot care might not be the most glamorous job, but they are always very quick to add that they are so thankful for what she and all of the caregivers with Adena Podiatry do for them.

“People don’t realize how disabling not having the proper foot or nail care can be,” she said. “I’ve had many patients tell me that without our help, they would not have been able to walk.”

To learn more about diabetic foot care, or to schedule an appointment with Adena Podiatry, contact the Adena Bone and Joint Center at 740-779-4598.