NJ Foot and Ankle Specialist Enjoys the Diversity of Podiatry   

NJ Foot and Ankle Specialist Enjoys the Diversity of Podiatry

Dr. Sarah Mateen smiling and holding a rolled-up yoga mat.

January 29, 2024

When she worked as a physical therapy aide earlier in her career, Sara Mateen, DPM, saw a variety of foot and ankle injuries. Having played many different sports, she was interested in how the body—especially the lower extremities—cope with the rigors of athletics, so she shadowed a few podiatrists when she could. 

She knew that career was ideal for her. She liked the diversity of podiatry, whether practicing sports medicine, treating diabetes, doing fracture care or elective reconstructive surgery.

Today, Dr. Mateen joyfully welcomes those challenges in her new role as a podiatrist and foot and ankle surgeon at Hackensack University Medical Center.

Dr. Mateen is excited about the evolving future of podiatry. “The specialty is going more towards robotic-focused procedures,” she says. “I was trained in minimally invasive techniques, but not every case is suited for those. Advancements in technology, such as orthopedic implants, have great promise, and I’d like to be part of an innovative product design in the future.”

What’s your favorite part of your job?

It’s seeing patients do well, whether from an injection, surgery or even a recommended orthotic—special shoe inserts that treat certain foot conditions. I like to see them return to normal activity, especially if they play sports, and to their full lives. I want to be thorough, comprehensive and accessible for them, and maintain an open dialogue. I want to treat each one of my patients as “a whole person.”

What do you do for fun?

I work out and try to improve on that any chance I can. I row and spin at the gym, but due to my own previous injury, I can’t do a lot of high-impact. I like to do yoga and pilates, and I now also play golf, pickleball and tennis. I enjoy music and reading, too.

You’re close—literally—to your family, aren’t you?

Yes, everyone lives in New Jersey, and I live near my parents, my brother and our family dog, a Pomeranian named Gucci. My family owns an Italian restaurant, and my favorite Italian dish is blackened salmon and broccoli with garlic and oil.

Regarding food, do you have any other helpful advice?

I drink smoothies for breakfast. Some of my favorite foods include snacks like organic fruit and nut bars, carrots and hummus, and pretzels. It’s important to eat healthy, and it’s OK to not always restrict yourself and to enjoy what you eat. My favorite cheat meals are pizza and ice cream.

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The material provided through HealthU is intended to be used as general information only and should not replace the advice of your physician. Always consult your physician for individual care.

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