It’s no secret orthopedic patients can sometimes wait weeks or months to be seen by a physician.
As Carmel resident Terry Lewkoski knows all too well, the wait is inconvenient at best and can affect your health.
Lewkoski suffers from gout, a common form of joint arthritis that can be extremely painful and life-limiting. When it flared up over the summer, his feet were red, tender and swollen. He struggled to put on shoes, let alone participate in the activities he enjoys, such as taking walks and driving his vintage Mustangs.
“When I contacted a physician’s office, the earliest appointment I could make was almost three weeks out,” says Lewkoski.
Forté Fast Makes It Easy to Get a Same Day Doctor’s Appointment
As his condition worsened, a family friend suggested he reach out to Forté Sports Medicine and Orthopedics. Lewkoski decided to forgo a phone call in favor of driving over to the Carmel location and pleading his case in person.
From the beginning, he says, the experience felt different.
“As I pulled up, the building was impressive, and there was plenty of covered parking,” says Lewkoski. “At that point in time, both of my feet were bothering me, so I appreciated the short walk into the reception area, which was bright and spacious.”
Perhaps most importantly, Lewkoski didn’t have to make his case for an appointment. He soon learned Forté offered an alternative to the standard appointment-making process with its walk-in expert-level orthopedic urgent care clinic known as Forté Fast.
“To my surprise, I was advised to take the elevator to the third-floor walk-in clinic where I could be seen that day,” says Lewkoski. “When I arrived, there were several people waiting to check me in, and boom, I was on my way.”
“I didn’t even finish the questionnaire before they called me back,” he adds.
Same-Day Convenient Services Under One Roof
In addition to a same-day exam with a fellowship-trained physician, Forté Fast offers convenient access to services, such as rehab, imaging, bracing, medical supplies and more.
“Right after I sat down to wait for an X-ray, another gentleman sat beside me,” says Lewkoski. “We didn’t even finish a two-minute conversation before we were taken back for imaging and then led to exam rooms. I can’t say enough about the process.”
Lewkoski soon realized the Forté Fast experience was not only quick but also thorough.
“I was seen by Dr. Matthew Negaard, who walked in and immediately put up the X-rays to look at them with me,” says Lewkoski. “He showed me there were no stress fractures and that it was clearly a case of gout.”
Negaard suggested Lewkoski try an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory gel and oral medication to relieve the pain and swelling.
“A benefit of getting the expert-level care at Forté Fast is that it does help a patient’s overall recovery by starting the healing process faster,” says Negaard, an emergency medicine and fellowship-trained sports medicine physician who serves as the medical director of Forté Fast. “The sooner we have a diagnosis, the sooner we can implement a treatment plan.”
Lewkoski was equally impressed during his follow-up visit when he showed Negaard how some shoes had been irritating his feet.
“He called down to the in-house pharmacy to request a gel pad, and by the time I got there, it was ready and waiting,” says Lewkoski.
Free from gout pain, Lewkoski soon returned to the things he enjoys, such as hitting his benchmark of 12,000 to 15,000 steps a day. He also climbed back behind the wheel of his Mustangs – including one of the first 9,000 ever produced.
“You use both feet for the accelerator and clutch,” explains Lewkoski. “Yesterday, I was out driving and had no problems shifting, engaging the clutch and things like that.”
He says his only regret is not visiting Forté Fast sooner.
“From the beginning, I felt like – wow, this is different,” says Lewkoski. “I never anticipated being seen that day.”
“Should I have any future orthopedic issues or gout flare-ups, I now have a group of professionals close to home that I can call upon,” he says.
For more information about Forté Fast Orthopedic Care, including walk-in hours for all three locations in Carmel, Noblesville and Greenwood, visit forteortho.com.