If you are looking for an available medical professional, then you need to make sure that you find the right one to meet your needs. Doctors specialize in certain areas and there is a chance that you might be looking for someone who specializes in orthopedic medicine.
Orthopedics is a specific medical field that focuses on conditions and diseases that impact the musculoskeletal system. This may include nerves, ligaments, tendons, joints, bones, and muscles. If you are looking for an orthopedic doctor, it is important for you to understand what they do, how they will help you, and when you need one.
What Does an Orthopedic Doctor Do?
An orthopedic doctor is usually referred to as an orthopedic surgeon because they receive specific training in orthopedic surgery; however, not all visits involving an orthopedic surgeon are going to take place in an operating room. A lot of the duties of an orthopedic surgeon include:
- In addition to treating orthopedic conditions, an orthopedic surgeon will also help you diagnose issues related to the musculoskeletal system and can help you manage them without surgery
- An orthopedic doctor will also assist you with the rehabilitation process, helping you increase your flexibility, strength, and range of motion following a serious injury or surgical procedure
- An orthopedic surgeon can also help you develop strategies that can prevent orthopedic problems from developing in the future
Even though orthopedic surgeons are trained to provide assistance with all parts of the musculoskeletal system, a lot of orthopedic surgeons will specialize in a certain part of the musculoskeletal system.
For example, some orthopedic doctors May specialize in knees while other orthopedic surgeons may specialize in hands. Orthopedic doctors also may specialize in sports medicine or focus on trauma surgery.
What Conditions Does an Orthopedic Doctor Treat?
There are a few common conditions that an orthopedic doctor may treat. Some of the most common examples of conditions that are treated by orthopedic doctors include:
- Bone fractures involving the arm, wrist, hips, femur, tibia, or fibula
- Muscle strains and ligament sprains, including ligament sprains of the knees, elbows, and shoulders
- Multiple types of arthritis including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and juvenile-onset arthritis
- Carpal tunnel syndrome, which is an inflammatory condition that impacts the risk, commonly found in people who type excessively
- Congenital abnormalities involving the bones such as scoliosis, clubfoot, and bow leg
- Certain types of bone cancer
- Acute and chronic back pain
These are just a few of the many types of musculoskeletal conditions that an orthopedic doctor may treat. In addition, orthopedic surgeons are commonly asked to consult on patients who are treated by other medical specialties as well.
What Types of Procedures Does an Orthopedic Surgeon Perform?
Orthopedic surgeons are trained to perform a wide variety of procedures. It is important for everyone to understand that orthopedic surgeons are not strictly limited to the operating room. There are conditions where an orthopedic surgeon may recommend someone focus on rehabilitative exercises, prescription medications, or certain lifestyle changes in lieu of surgery.
On the other hand, there are some situations where surgery is going to be required. Some of the most common surgical procedures that orthopedic surgeons will perform include:
- An orthopedic surgeon will help someone with joint replacement surgeries including knee replacements and hip replacements
- Orthopedic surgeons are commonly asked to perform procedures called an open reduction and internal fixation, which take place when someone suffers a bone fracture that requires surgery to set properly
- Orthopedic surgeons can also assist with spinal fusion procedures, which are commonly used to help people recover from scoliosis or a herniated disc
- An orthopedic surgeon may be asked to perform something called an osteotomy, which is a type of surgery that involves cutting a part of a bone and then positioning it properly
- Orthopedic surgeons will also assist with soft tissue repair, which is what happens when someone tears and ACL and has to have it repaired
- Orthopedic surgeons can also help with something called a release surgery, which is used when a part of the body is being unduly compressed
Orthopedic surgeons are trained to perform a wide variety of surgical procedures.
When Do I Need an Orthopedic Specialist?
There are several situations in which people might need the assistance of a trained orthopedic surgeon. Some of the most common examples include:
- You might notice that you have pain or swelling in a joint, bone, or muscle that requires the attention of an orthopedic doctor
- If you noticed that your flexibility or range of motion in one of your joints is severely restricted, then you should consider reaching out to an orthopedic surgeon
- If you are having issues performing your activities of daily living, you may need the help of an orthopedic doctor
- If you are noticing shooting pains traveling down your limbs, this may require the attention of an orthopedic doctor
- If you suffered a serious injury during a sporting event or any motor vehicle accident, you may require the help of an orthopedic surgeon
If you are looking for an orthopedic doctor, make sure you schedule an appointment with a Board Certified orthopedic physician to ensure that you will receive the highest quality care. Zion Medical, Inc orthopedic surgeon Dr. Brian McGraw has the experience and skills required to diagnose your injury and help your body heal.