We know that orthopaedic surgeons are bone doctors; they take care of musculoskeletal problems. But did you know that orthopaedics involves more than just surgery? Bone problems are so common that we really don’t give much thought to what orthopaedics is really about. Here are some interesting facts you should know.
There is More to Orthopaedics Than Surgery
Although orthopaedic complaints are the number one reason to seek medical care, surgery is not always called for. Sometimes, regenerative medicine can do the trick. Physical therapy offers rehabilitation and non-surgical treatments for a variety of musculoskeletal problems. For athletes and teams that want to enhance their performance, sports programs offer world-class training techniques using the most efficient equipment.
How Many Musculoskeletal Doctors are There?
There are more than 30,500 orthopaedic surgeons in the United States. Half of that number reports a subspecialty. The most common subspecialties are sports medicine, hand surgery and joint replacement. In 2016, more than 413,000 knee and hip replacements were performed.
The Most Common Orthopaedic Surgeries
It’s not surprising that so many joint replacements are required; the baby boomers are aging. The four most common orthopaedic surgeries are:
- Total joint replacements
- Total shoulder replacements
- Spinal surgery
- ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) surgery
The Most Common Injuries
From children doing what children do, to weekend warriors who do what they should do, here are some of the most common injuries seen by orthopaedic surgeons:
- Dislocated shoulder
- Tennis elbow
- Wrist fracture
- Stress fractures
- ACL tear
- Ankle and foot sprain
Just when you thought that orthopaedics was only about broken bones, here are some common diseases treated by orthopaedic surgeons:
- Congenital hand deformities
- Spinal tumors
- Paget’s disease of the bone
- Multiple myeloma
Popular Orthopaedic Procedures
It seems as if there are as many orthopaedic procedures as there are orthopaedic surgeons! Some of the most common ones include:
When problems occur inside the joint, the arthroscope is required to go inside, have a look and repair the problem.
Soft Tissue Repair
Soft tissue repair procedures are designed to repair torn ligaments and tendons.
Damaged joints are replaced with prosthetic devices. Revision joint surgery occurs when a pre-existing implant needs to be partially or completely swapped out with a new device.
Bone Fracture Repair
These are the procedures that repair broken bones.