Orthopedic surgeons are medical professionals that specialize in the musculoskeletal system, which consists of bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, and muscles. The surgeons prevent, diagnose, treat and manage all conditions affecting the musculoskeletal system. Orthopedics is a broad specialty, so most doctors specialize in a particular field like knee, hip, or foot injuries. Your West Chester orthopedic surgeon treats many musculoskeletal problems, including bone fractures, muscle strains, arthritis, joint pain, bone cancer, and back pain. There are many roles of orthopedic surgeons, including:
Diagnosing musculoskeletal issues
The first time you meet your orthopedic surgeon, the provider will ask about the symptoms you are experiencing and your medical history. The specialist can do some physical tests to determine your source of pain or the injured section. You may have to move your body in specific directions for your surgeon to locate the source of your pain. Depending on your condition, your orthopedic surgeon can recommend further tests like an X-ray or MRI for more information. After diagnosis, your provider will develop the best treatment for you.
Treating musculoskeletal problems
Orthopedic surgeons use various techniques to treat musculoskeletal conditions, including:
Non-surgical treatments are also known as conservative treatments. Orthopedic surgeons use these procedures before recommending surgery. There are many non-surgical treatments, including:
Exercises: Orthopedic surgeons can recommend exercises to help improve or regain strength, flexibility, and range of motion in specific body areas.
Immobilization: Braces, splints, and casts are some common immobilization techniques orthopedic surgeons recommend. They prevent additional strain on your affected area and help it heal.
Medications: Your orthopedic surgeon can recommend painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs to help relieve pain and swelling. Ibuprofen and aspirin are commonly used drugs. Your doctor can also prescribe corticosteroids.
Lifestyle changes: Your doctor can recommend lifestyle changes like exercise and diet to prevent worsening your condition or injury.
Your orthopedic surgeon can recommend surgery if your condition does not improve with conservative treatments. There are various surgeries orthopedic surgeons can perform, including:
Joint replacement: This surgery involves replacing damaged parts of your joint. Joint replacement is mainly done in the knee and hips.
Internal fixation: Your surgeon can hold broken bones in place during the healing phase using hardware like pins, screws, plates, or rods.
Fusion: Surgeons mainly use this technique in neck and spine damage. Fusion involves bone graft material and internal fixation to join two bones. As your bone tissue is healing, it will fuse into one bone.
Osteotomy: This surgery focuses on cutting a part of your injured bone and repositioning it. Surgeons can use osteotomy to treat arthritis.
Soft tissue repair: Orthopedic surgeons use this surgery to treat severely damaged muscles, ligaments, and tendons.
Release surgery: Surgeons use release surgery to treat carpal tunnel syndrome. It reduces symptoms by minimizing pressure on your median nerve.
Orthopedic surgeons specialize in preventing, diagnosing, and treating joints, muscles, ligaments, and bone issues. They treat arthritis, limb abnormalities, sprains, strains, back pain, bone fractures, and back pain. Schedule an appointment at Beacon Orthopedics & Sports Medicine for orthopedic surgeon services to treat your musculoskeletal issues.