Podiatry (foot disorders) and orthotics


Podiatry is the management of foot disorders and the problems associated with medical conditions that manifest themselves in the feet and lower limbs. The podiatrist's role is to assess, diagnose and treat foot and lower limb disorders in those patients seen to be at risk from infection, ulceration or amputation due to an underlying medical condition. The Podiatry Service covers the county of Warwickshire.

High risk or at risk foot: A high risk or at risk foot patient is someone with a medical condition or illness that may make it more difficult for damaged skin to heal eg. lower limb circulatory problems, neuropathy (sensation loss), diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis or certain medications / treatments such as chemotherapy for cancer.

Podiatry specialities

Diabetes Team

A service is provided to those patients diagnosed with diabetes who have active, high or moderate foot risk according to NICE Guideline 19 (2015) 'Diabetic Foot Problems: Prevention & Management.' Patients with neuropathy and / or impaired circulation or one or more risk factor should be referred to the Podiatry Department for triage and screening. Active foot problems including ulceration with or without infection or suspected Charcot should be referred immediately for urgent triage, assessment and treatment. Please download the Diabetes Referral Pathway.

Rheumatology Team

The Rheumatology Team run specialist clinics for patients with an active rheumatological / connective tissue disease, who are seen by a rheumatology consultant, should be referred to the department for triage and screening.

Musculoskeletal Team (MSK)

The MSK Team provide advice and / or treatment as appropriate to children and adults with pain or deformity in their feet or legs stemming from muscles, bones, joints and related soft tissue.

Neurology Team

The Neurology Team provide a service at Leamington Hospital, as well as the community clinics. They aim to provide: lower limb stability, in order to assist in mobility; prevent falls through footwear; hosiery advice; and simple orthotics.

Nail surgery

A specialist service in the community providing the option of permanent removal or treatment of ingrown toenails for adults and children using a local anaesthetic.

Podiatry at home

Patients must be housebound to access this service and meet the department's criteria for treatment. We can advise you on how to contact Community Transport to bring you to your appointment.

Podiatry referral process and contact details

The Podiatry team accept self-referrals from patients where they meet the access criteria. They also have a Podiatry Single Point of Access that supports the service provided across the county

Referrals can be made by using the details below;

  • Telephone : 01926 600818 option 4
  • Email: podiatryreferrals@swft.nhs.uk

After the team have received the referral, you will be contacted by telephone for telephone triage to assess the priority for assessment / treatment.

The team aim to contact referrals, with emergency feet, within one working day and currently work within Department of Health guidelines to action all other referrals within the 18 week wait time.

Please note: the Podiatry Team only see people at home as an exception and only offer the service to those who are completely housebound.

Please see referral form for access criteria.


The Orthotics Department assesses people for and provides a wide range of braces and supports (orthoses) for many parts of the body. Orthoses are used to correct, accommodate or maintain good positioning of the muscles, bones and joints. The orthoses do this by helping to rest, protect or support the muscles, bones and joints which may assist your posture and mobility.

What devices will we accept referrals for?

  • Insoles
  • Footwear
  • Ankle Foot Orthoses
  • Ankle braces
  • Knee braces
  • Knee Ankle Foot Orthoses
  • Hip braces
  • Shoe raises and adaptions
  • Hernia supports
  • Spinal braces
  • Upper limb bracing
  • Neck collars
  • Protective helmets

How to be referred/refer to the Orthotics Department?

You will need to be referred by a HCP, GP or Consultant in writing sent to orthotics@swft.nhs.uk.

Please note: if we have not seen you for over 2 years you will need a new referral.

Staff - you can access the inpatient referral form via the document library on the staff extranet.

About your orthotics appointment

What do I need to bring to the appointment?

  • If you are expecting an orthosis for your feet it is advisable to wear comfortable, well-fitting shoes, eg. shoes that have low heel, lace up or velcro fastening, and a solid sole unit.
  • If you think that your own shoes may need adapting because your legs are different lengths (eg. a raise adding) please bring a spare pair of shoes with you so that you can leave a pair for adaptation.
  • If you are expecting an orthosis for your leg please wear loose clothing that can be rolled well above your knees so that you won’t have to get undressed.
  • If you already use something that helps you or you have had an orthosis before (even if it does not work, was provided by another hospital, is too small or is worn out), please bring it with you as this may help the Orthotist to decide on the best course of action.
  • If you need equipment to help with standing and walking It is important to bring this with you eg. walking stick, crutches, Kaye walker. We may ask you to walk and will want to see how you usually do this.

If you are not sure what to bring to your appointment, please phone us and we will be able to advise you. It is important you bring the right things with you otherwise you may need to come back at another time and your treatment may be delayed.

If you wish, you may bring a relative or friend to the appointment with you. A chaperone can also be arranged. Please call us in advance to request this.

Where will my appointment be held?

Full details of where to find us will be detailed on your appointment letter.

What happens at my appointment?

At your appointment you will see an Orthotist (specialist in providing orthoses), who will ask you about the difficulties you have been experiencing. They will assess you and take some measurements or casts (you may need to partially undress for this). They will then discuss treatment options with you along with your expectations and realistic goals so you can agree on a treatment plan together.

Following your assessment, you may be given a further appointment appropriate to your treatment plan.

What happens if I need an orthosis?

You will be shown how your orthotic device fits and given any advice necessary. We will give you our contact details so that you can get in touch if have any initial problems or concerns.

Any devices / footwear that requires repair will need to be booked an appointment to do so.

Please note: We cannot except responsibility for devices left without prior agreement.

Orthotics contact details

Telephone: 01926 600818 Option 4

Email address: orthotics@swft.nhs.uk

The department is open from Monday to Friday (8am-4pm)

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