Orthopaedics is the medical specialty that focuses on injuries and diseases affecting your body's musculoskeletal system which includes your bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles, nerves and connective tissue all of which allow you to move, and be active. The primary function of this complex system is to support the body, allowing motion, and protection of the vital organs. The frequency and impact of these disorders and injuries combined with recent advances in their diagnosis and treatment make orthopaedics a critical part of health care.
In 2006, musculoskeletal symptoms were the number 2 cause for all physician visits. These symptoms include pain, soreness, discomfort, cramps, contractures, spasms, limitation of movement, stiffness, weakness, swelling, lump, mass, and tumors affecting the musculoskeletal systems.
Common conditions treated include:
- Knee Pain
- Muscle Sprains/Strains
- Acute & Chronic Injuries
- Shoulder Pain
- Post-Operative Care
Osteoarthritis (OA) or degenerative joint disease is one of the leading causes of chronic disability among Americans, affecting nearly 27 million. Osteoarthritis occurs more frequently as we age. Before age 45, it occurs more in males and after 55, more frequently in females. OA is the most common type of arthritis which is caused by the breakdown and eventual loss of the cartilage in one or more joints and usually affects the hands, feet, spine and large weight-bearing joints, such as the hips and knees. Unlike other forms of arthritis that are systemic illnesses, osteoarthritis does not affect other organs of the body.
Symptoms vary widely from patient to patient, and may include:
- Joint pain
- Swelling, warmth & creaking of the affected joint
- Stiffness, locking, and sometimes an effusion (abnormal buildup of joint fluid)
- In severe cases, complete loss of the cartilage cushion causes friction between bones, and there may be pain at rest or limited motion.
- Treatment generally involves a combination of exercise, lifestyle modification, and analgesics. If pain becomes debilitating, joint replacement surgery may be used to substantially improve the quality of life.