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shoes on the wards (on your feet for 12 hours)

acunat

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So I'm approaching my third year of medical school and its time to get some new shoes.

As a medical student I'll be wearing the standard shirt and tie attire which tends to require some sort of leather shoe to go along with it. Being a bit on the sartorial side, I refuse to wear the standard rockport-tennis-shoe-monstrosity or the equally hideous dansko. I currently have a pair of brown wingtips and black cap toes, that while great for the day in class or at an office, dont work for the typical day on the wards where you're on your feet for 8+ hours a day. Now I've heard the saying that leather bottom shoes are the most comfortable you can get, but in my experience, that comfort begins to wane around 5 hours on your feet.

Any suggestions for super comfortable, yet stylish and appropriate* shoes?

Thanks!



*unfortunately, while the brown wingtip style is fine, black shiny cap toes are considered too formal for a student in the hospital setting. at least, in my experience.
 

Mudhiker

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NORE

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Are you gellin'?
 

sellahi22

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I recommend Tod's. Across the board, by far the most comfortable shoes I have ever tried. I wear their rubber soled penny and venetian loafers on rainy days, when traveling, and on weekends when I will be walking a lot.
 

Achilles_

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I have a crepe soled chukka's and they are amazingly comfortable. I don't think chukka's are what you are looking for though


FWIW my pair of Bally's were the most comfortable shoe I've ever worn.
 

thunderthighs

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Wards are a great place to completely mess up a nice pair of expensive shoes. A search might have turned up this thread, in which I wrote regarding shoes for wards: http://www.styleforum.net/showthread.php?t=29613&page=6
SHOES: Avoid leather soled shoes. You need the traction and liquid resistance of rubber soles. From bodily fluids to spilled medicines and IV bags, you never know what will be on the floor and it may take a while for the staff to get it cleaned up (and clean ups are generally not a high priority during codes or trauma calls). Get comfortable and cheap-to-replace rubber soled dress shoes like Rockports for normal wear, and a good pair or two of ventilated plastic or rubber clogs to wear with your scrubs. You will be on your feet for many hours each day. A complex or complication-ridden surgical procedure may have you on your feet the entire day (or night), doing nothing but pulling on retractors while being grilled with anatomy and surgery questions. You can't do this very well if your feet are killing you.
As an addendum, be careful not to go too far in the stylishness department. The best way to distinguish yourself as a medical student and/or resident is to work hard, know your shit, and look professional. You know the old corporate saying - don't outdress your boss? Well, the attendings and residents are your bosses in the wards. Don't draw the wrong kind of attention to yourself.
 

andrew96

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Buy Eccos, they are the most comfortable shoes on the market. I could go running in mine.
 

NAMOR

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I have these Alden PTBs on a rubber outsole and they are extremely comfortable. They are constructed on Alden's Barrie last and the outsole is entirely made of rubber. Worth every penny, imo.

theshoemart.com/alden-mens_welterweight_calfskin_brown/pvc-ald-mxs-946_ald_m_welterweight_calfskin.html
 

sportin_life

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You shouldn't be on your feet much for the non-surgical rotations and most shoes should work fine. I highly doubt that you will be on your feet for 8 hours a day, unless they don't let med students sit during rounds or conferences at your school. I don't think I've ever stood for more than 3-4 hours in a day during any part of my training while on a non-procedural rotation, and those were post-admission days when we walk rounded, including during my med school years in the northeast, which is known as being one of the most stringent ones for med students.

On the procedural rotations, I would strongly still consider Danskos, despite how ugly they are and your objections to them. One key for me is that they are sturdy as heck, and you don't want to spill blood on your nice $500 Aldens anyway. Also, when you are rounding at 4 am during your general surgery rotation after sleeping for 4 hours a night, you will probably care less about how good your shoes look and more about how comfortable your feet are.
 

raditude

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I would echo what thunderthighs and sportin said above. If you're wearing scrubs you should probably be wearing danskos. Otherwise, wear a shoe that you wouldn't mind replacing because every bodily fluid will try to seek out your nice english shoes and ruin them- not to mention the alcohol based hand gel which also tends to mess up your shoes (and clothing). 3rd year will be a fun and exciting time- try to learn as much as you can and read, read, read!
 

acunat

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Thanks everyone for your suggestions! A lot of those shoes while amazing are a bit out of my price range and I'd be wary of taking them anywhere near a hospital.

thunder, I actually read a bit of that post but it seemed to focus mostly on clothes and was from 07 so I drifted back to board study. Thanks for sharing your portion with me though and you make some great points. I hadnt considered the slippery surfaces aspect yet. I've found that in the medical world (I worked in a hospital for a few years as an inpatient researcher, but we had to be on the dressier side) someone that is very 'stylish' can look more out of place than someone who barely has a shirt that fits. I guess I was looking for a middle ground. I realize my work ethic will matter much more, but I figure dressing well (but not too well) cant hurt. Another suggestion I've heard were driving mocs - perhaps a bit less unsightly than rockports?

sportin/raditude, I did exaggerate to the upper limit on the time because I know that a short day can easily turn into a long one depending on the patient that walks through the door. Im going to try and hold out on the danskos as long as possible, but im sure ill probably end up buying a pair eventually. I've seen a lot of surgeons / ER docs wearing running shoes in place of danskos, which I'd be more comfortable in anyway. Is your experience similar? And thanks for the rotation tips!
 

Poindexter

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Eccos, as the above poaster said, are ver-y comfortable. I have a pair. I was in Macy's the other day, and the shoe gyrlie told me that guys who have to spend their days on the feets love Rockports. They're, like, disguised tennies. They look (pretty much) like office dress shoes, but the construction is that of an athletic shoe. That's their mojo.

Cheep, too!

Aloha,

Poinz
 

tacobender

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+1 for tods, You can score them end of the season 50-60% off at a lot of places ( I know we do 2 cuts 40% and 60% off) they are super comfortable, last a reasonably long time and easy to keep up.

I work in retail and my feet don't hurt after 8 hours on my feet in Tods and Bally's, I know the price point isn't student friendly but maybe you can splurge a bit, its worth it.
 

btinl

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I wore some rubber-soled Allen Edmonds and Danskos for the majority of 3rd and 4th years. I also wore my Alden PTBs on commando soles when I knew there was no chance of bodily fluid spillage.
 

.Kurtz.

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If you prioritize function over form, Geox are great when dealing with overheated feet.
 

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