Parker Peresko tried his hand at the family business — car sales. His father was the first, followed by the two eldest Peresko sons. When it came time for Parker, he worked in internet car sales marketing, but it just wasn’t for him. Even though he didn’t follow in his family’s footsteps, there is no way someone could call him any type of “black sheep of the family.” After all, he did pretty well for himself — he became a doctor, a foot and ankle surgeon, to be exact.

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Parker Peresko, DPM, explains the foot anatomy to his patient at Arbor Health, Morton Clinic. Photo courtesy: Arbor Health

Garrett Parker Peresko, DPM, who goes by his middle name, is 32-years old, newly married and enthused to be on the course he set seven years ago when he enrolled in medical school. Today, he is a full-time physician at Arbor Health. He sees his clinic patients at the Arbor Health, Morton Clinic and performs surgeries and other procedures at Morton Hospital.

Dr. Peresko was one of four kids growing up in Oklahoma with the two aforementioned brothers and a younger sister. She, too, entered the medical field and is a nurse in Texas. Parker becoming a doctor surely couldn’t have been much of a surprise. He has always been intrigued by the human body and its capacities. Even in his undergraduate studies at the Oklahoma State University, he chose things like Anatomy & Physiology as elective courses when he had the chance. So really, his career path into medicine was an easy choice. He applied and was accepted to the medical school at Western University of Health Sciences in Los Angeles to begin another four years of study. When it came time for him to determine which field of medicine he would enter, he, in part, made the decision by job shadowing a variety of physicians and using the opportunity to ask questions about the advantages and disadvantages of their specific specialty.

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Foot and Ankle Surgeon Parker Peresko is pictured in the operating room with the hospital’s new C-Arm Scanner. Photo courtesy: Arbor Health

Even before then, though, he had already determined he wanted to be a surgeon. “With surgery, you can see the results immediately. Or you can at least see that they will happen,” he explains. From there, it was really what kind of surgeon — general surgeon? A specialty? Dr. Peresko remembers hearing about a friend of a friend who was told he was in danger of losing his leg due to an infection. However, a foot and ankle surgeon was able to cure it and save the leg. That made Peresko seriously consider foot and ankle surgery, also known as podiatry.

“I started looking more into it, and the more I dug into it, it seemed there was a real need for foot and ankle doctors,” Dr. Peresko recalls. “And most of the podiatrists that I job shadowed and met had a great work-life ratio.”

With the final decision made, Peresko was off for three years of residency, which he split between what he considers to be two of the best programs in the country — West Penn Hospital in Pittsburgh, where he was chief resident, and Swedish Medical Center in Seattle.

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Arbor Health, Morton Hospital. Photo courtesy: Arbor Health

And from there, it was picturesque East Lewis County in Morton. “I’ve loved it so far,” he says. “There has never been a foot and ankle surgeon here, and there’s a real need for it. The reception has been very warm from the patients and staff. I couldn’t be more appreciative.”

One of his deciding factors in choosing foot and ankle specialty, the work-life ratio, is important to Dr. Peresko. And East Lewis County has much to offer for outdoor recreation — something that he especially enjoys. “There are a lot of mountains here, and I love hiking, and exploring while finding new places to venture,” he explains.

Dr. Peresko and his wife, Kira, have two “fur children,” both dogs. One was Kira’s when they met, and the second is what he terms as a failed attempt at fostering a dog — the “failure” being that after they had him in their home, they couldn’t part with him and adopted him themselves.

Dr. Parker Peresko is available for appointment by calling 360.496.3641.

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