Orthopaedics: Everything You Need to Know

Orthopaedics is the area of medicine that specializes on injuries and diseases specific to the human musculoskeletal system. The human musculoskeletal system enables you to be active, have movement and perform daily tasks. Components of this system
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Nov. 28, 2012 - PRLog -- Orthopaedics The Specialty

What is Orthopaedics

Orthopaedics is the area of medicine that specializes on injuries and diseases specific to the human musculoskeletal system. The human musculoskeletal system enables you to be active, have movement and perform daily tasks. Components of this system include tendons, joints, bones, muscles, nerves and ligaments.  

Historically, Orthopaedics focused exclusive on children with malformations of the spine and limbs. However, modern practitioners of Orthopaedics treat patients of all ages, ranging from day-old babies with clubfeet to teenage athletes needing arthroscopic surgery to senior citizens suffering from arthritis. Since any one, at any age, can suffer a fractured bone, it has evolved into a comprehensive


Training and Education for Orthopaedics

In order to become an Orthopaedic surgeon, extensive education and training must be undergone in order to be a licensed professional. After completing four years at an undergraduate university and four years at medical school, five years of an Orthopaedic residency must be successfully performed at an accredited medical center before an individual can practice independently. Further education includes continuing education courses that continue indefinitely throughout an Orthopaedist’s career.  

Roles of Your Orthopaedist/ Orthopaedist Surgeon:

n  Your Orthopaedic medical doctor or surgeon will first evaluate and diagnose your injury or disorder.

n  Once your condition is determined, it will be treated with a combination of exercise, surgery, medication or a combination thereof.

n  Movement, function and strength are restored through recommended and supervised exercise and/or physical therapy.

n  Future injuries are prevented and degenerative diseases are managed and slowed with information and treatment plans from an Orthopaedic practitioner.

Depending on the Orthopaedic surgeon chosen, in addition to being fully familiar with the entire musculoskeletal system, many Orthopaedists are experts within a certain area such as the hip, spine, knee or ankle and foot. Other specializations beyond specific parts of the musculoskeletal system include sports medicine, pediatrics or trauma. In fact, a medical doctor can focus in more than one specialty.

How to choose an Orthopaedist/Orthopaedic Surgeon

If you are looking for an Orthopaedis/Orthopaedic surgeon, there are some very important attributes that you should keep an eye out for. Looking out for an Orthopaedist/Orthopaedic surgeon requires that he or she is highly educated, has ample experience, is free of state sanctions and past and current lawsuits, and has made no egregious medical errors.

Based on the guidelines above, ensuring your Orthopaedic doctor is educated and board certified will minimize your chances of having something go wrong with your medical treatment. Verification can be done with your doctor and through appropriate state medical licensing agencies.

As with education, making sure you Orthopaedic doctor is experienced can literally mean the difference between life and death. Determining how many years, procedures and accuracy with said procedures will determine how experienced and proficient your doctor is in practicing Orthopaedics.    

Ensuring your Orthopaedist or Orthopaedic surgeon is free of state sanctions as well as past and current lawsuits is another good attribute to look for. While it goes without saying, ensuring your doctor has no negative past and current sanctions or lawsuits means your doctor is honest, competent and professional. This information can be obtained by a simple search online or over the phone.

Building upon and related to the other attributes, making sure you Orthopaedist/Orthopaedic surgeon has made no egregious medical errors is one more thing to look for. Ensure you potential Orthopaedist is competent can be determined and verified by making sure he or she has made no errors in a hospital or private practice setting.

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