What Does an Orthopedic Doctor Do for Patients? Here’s a Full Breakdown
Nobody ever wants to undergo orthopedic surgery, but sometimes it is the only option to ensure that a patient can regain full mobility of their joint and will find permanent relief for their joint pain.
However, advanced orthopedics like surgery are always used as a last resort. For those that are experiencing joint pain or a musculoskeletal issue that is infringing upon their quality of life, orthopedic doctors will try numerous other tactics before resorting to surgery.
What Does an Orthopedic Doctor Do?
Orthopedic doctors are specialists in the musculoskeletal system. They treat trauma injuries, sports injuries, and degenerative diseases and infections that impact the bones and muscles of the human body.
During the typical first appointment, an orthopedic doctor will take a detailed medical history, examine the affected area, and they may even order an MRI or X-rays to get to the root cause of your issue. Once that part is complete, they will design a detailed care plan that is intended specifically for you.
This may include at-home treatments that you can do on your own, such as heat and ice therapy, over the counter pain medications, extended rest of the joint, and braces and other medical devices that take pressure off the joint.
In the event your orthopedic doctor finds that these treatments aren’t working, there are other methods they can try such as professional physical therapy, prescription medication, injection treatments to reduce inflammation, and more.
Of course, when an orthopedic doctor determines your condition requires surgery, they won’t hesitate to refer you to an orthopedic surgeon. Sometimes advanced orthopedics are the only way to truly resolve the issue.
What Types of Surgeries Are Performed by Orthopedic Surgeons?
There are numerous medical conditions that may require orthopedic surgery. Some of them are minimally invasive and have a quick recovery time. Others are more invasive and will require the patient to go through professional physical therapy and be off their feet for an indeterminate amount of time. Every patient is unique, so it’s important that they know what their orthopedic surgery will consist of and what their recovery plan will be.
The following are some of the most common examples of orthopedic surgery that are performed at Mid-America Orthopedics Wichita:
Arthroscopic Surgery: If you need surgery on your knee, shoulder, or other joint, arthroscopic surgery is what patients and their doctors hope for. That’s because arthroscopic surgery only requires small incisions to be made to access the damaged part of the joint using small surgical tools and a pinhole camera. It is one of the most minimally invasive varieties of surgery, which means patients are back on their feet after a short recovery period.
ACL Reconstruction Surgery: This is a surgery that repairs a major knee ligament by taking a portion of tendon from another part of the body and replacing it. The procedure is minimally invasive, and patients are typically able to go home the same day they come in. Post-surgical care generally consists of rest, elevation, compression, and ice therapy.
Knee Replacement Surgery: There are two varieties of knee replacement surgery – partial knee replacement surgery and total knee replacement surgery. Which one a patient requires is totally dependent on the severity of the injury or condition. It’s also important to keep in mind that knee issues can be caused by a variety of factors, including trauma, repetitive motion, obesity, bursitis, and more.
Shoulder Replacement Surgery: For shoulder replacement surgery, an orthopedic doctor will remove a portion of the humerus and replace it with a metal implant. This is followed by removing the damaged portion of the socket and inserting a plastic prosthesis. Recovery time can be lengthy for this type of surgery, so it’s important that patients – especially athletes – give their shoulder time to heal.
Hip Replacement Surgery: There are two different types of hip replacement surgery – traditional replacement surgery and the Birmingham hip replacement approach. The first replaces the entire ball and socket joint with a prosthesis whereas the Birmingham approach replaces only the damaged portions. Recovery time varies greatly for this type of surgery.
Ready to See an Orthopedic Doctor Near You? Contact Mid-America Orthopedics Wichita
Millions of people suffer with joint pain and musculoskeletal issues every year, but you don’t have to be one of them. If you are suffering with acute or chronic joint pain, don’t hesitate to reach out to our experienced orthopedic doctors to make an appointment.
In the event that your joint requires surgery, our orthopedic doctors will refer you over to one of our in-house orthopedic surgeons who specialize in advanced orthopedics.