What do a local rock n’ roll band guitarist, a champion jet skier, an inventor, a pharmacist, and a rancher who raises Arabian horses and cattle have in common? They are one in the same person—Dr. Donald Stran!
Patients know Dr. Stran as one of Greater Houston’s premier, board-certified podiatrists with state-of-the-art offices and a first-rate team, but this is just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to helping his patients break free from foot and ankle problems and pain, Dr. Stran pursues life outside the office with equal passion and zeal.
Music and Rock Bands
Music has been part of Dr. Stran’s life since childhood. He was interested in playing the guitar as a youngster, but his hands were too small at the time. He took up the trumpet instead, and this decision led him to have a “brush with greatness.”
“I went to a small Catholic high school in Baltimore, and our band was invited to Canada to play in an event Queen Elizabeth was attending,” Dr. Stran explains. “It was an incredible experience. There I was, walking in front of the Queen of England playing my trumpet!”
Although he enjoyed the trumpet, the dream of being a guitarist stayed with Dr. Stran. He began playing in 2005 and, as his skill progressed, his instructor asked him to play rhythm in a local band. Dr. Stran didn’t hesitate to seize this opportunity.
“My thought was, heck yes, I’ll be a rock star!” Dr. Stran quips.
For the last nine years, Dr. Stran has been a member in a local rock group that regularly plays gigs throughout Houston. In addition to the guitar, he plays the cowbell and tambourine in the group. Formerly called Pirate Radio, the band was recently renamed Kojak Jones.
“We play all types of music—classic rock, pop, Motown, country—and we have an acoustic ensemble as well as the full band. It feels great to play for an audience. I derive energy from the crowd and love making people smile, sing, and feel happy!” says Dr. Stran, who confesses he’s a classic rock enthusiast at heart. His favorite songs the band plays are “Pride and Joy” by Stevie Ray Vaughn and Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition.”
Arabian Horses and Fatherhood
One of Dr. Stran’s many hobbies is raising Arabian horses, and he’s recently added some cattle to the mix. He says it keeps him busy, along with the band and his podiatry practice, but the most important thing he does in life is being a father to his two daughters. The eldest is a freshman at Texas Tech, majoring in equestrian science, and the youngest is a junior at Friendswood High School.
“My girls mean everything to me. Being a father changes you, and raising daughters on my own has made me see things in a unique way,” he says. “I wouldn’t trade being a dad for anything in the world.”
Each year, Dr. Stran, who enjoys carpentry, makes both of his daughters a jewelry box for Christmas. “It’s all tongue-in-groove. There are no screws,” Dr. Stran says. This past Christmas, his girls got another surprise from their doting father. He wrote a song, recorded it, and produced a slideshow for them.
Podiatrist and Inventor
Dr. Stran’s road to becoming a board-certified podiatrist and a fellow of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgery (FACFAS) is as unique as the rest of his story. He earned a degree in pharmacy from the University of Maryland and worked as a pharmacist, then decided to pursue podiatry where his “hands would be of more value.” After earning a Doctorate of Podiatric Medicine from Temple University in Philadelphia, graduating with honors, he completed his surgical residency in Houston. Dr. Stran went on to serve as director of the Harris County Podiatric Surgical Residency Foundation, Gulf Coast Podiatric Residency Program, and the Guadalajara Orthopedic Program, and has been a teaching physician with the St. Joseph’s Medical Center podiatric residency program. He is certified by the American Board of Foot and Ankle Surgery.
As if this wasn’t enough, Dr. Stran is a prolific inventor. He has developed surgical instrumentation and procedures throughout his nearly 30-year career in podiatry, most notably, the microsurgical One-Stitch Heel Spur Procedure. A firm believer in lifelong learning and continuing education, Dr. Stran has lectured nationally and internationally, and has provided surgical training to orthopedic surgeons in Guadalajara, Mexico, while performing reconstruction on pediatric deformities.
“Expect the Best”
Houston Foot and Ankle’s slogan sets the bar high, and Dr. Stran and his team deliver. He and his associate, Dr. Kelli O. Stevens, combine high-quality podiatry using advanced technology with efficient, professional, patient-centered care. A full range of foot and ankle conditions are diagnosed and treated using conservative, nonsurgical solutions as well as surgery, all customized to the patient.
“We’re seeing more children and adults with sports injuries, such as ankle ligament and tendon ruptures and strains that can cause conditions such as plantar fasciitis (heel pain),” says Dr. Stran, who has always been involved in athletic activities. “We work hard to ensure patients leave educated so they can follow through on at-home care and take preventive measures to help keep problems from recurring.”
Patients also appreciate Dr. Stran’s honest and straightforward nature. “We value your time as well as ours. We’re efficient and thorough. If you’re on time, you will be seen on time as scheduled,” he says.
If you are embarrassed to show off your feet due to their appearance, or if foot and ankle pain is affecting your quality of life, make an appointment with Houston Foot & Ankle today. Dr. Stran and his friendly team are equipped to handle all your podiatric needs. Most medical insurance is accepted.
- Diagnoses and treats a wide range of foot and ankle conditions/injuries
- Ankle arthroscopy
- Cold and hot laser treatments
- Fractures, sprains, strains, tendonitis
- Neuropathy and neuromas[/one_half]
- Digital orthotics
- Bunions, heel spurs, plantar fasciitis
- Children’s feet
- Digital diabetic neuropathy detection/diagnosis
- “One-Stitch” heel procedure[/one_half_last]
Donald C. Stran, DPM, FACFAS
345 East Parkwood Avenue, FM 528
Friendswood, Texas 77546
9839 Highway 6
Missouri City, Texas 77459
121 West Highway 332, Suite G
Lake Jackson, Texas 77566
Text: Annette Brooks
Photo: Kelley Sweet Photography