What is an orthopedic surgeon?

An orthopedic surgeon is a specialist dealing with bones, ligaments, tendons, joints, and muscles. You will most commonly see an orthopedic surgeon after seeing your primary care doctor and receiving a referral.

What do orthopedic surgeons do?

Your orthopedic surgeon will diagnose any orthopedic issue, prescribe and perform treatments, and help you with rehabilitation. They may also help develop a long-term strategy to treat your injury, disorder, or illness related to the bones, ligaments, tendons, muscles, or joints.

Orthopedic surgeons provide various procedures, including surgery for knees, hips, hands, the neck, ankles, and the spine. Typically, your orthopedic surgeon will attempt to treat your issue in the least intrusive and most holistic way possible, but surgery could be necessary.

What’s orthopedic surgery?

A surgery performed by an orthopedic surgeon that deals with treating an issue or injury with bones, joints, muscles, tendons, or ligaments.

What all do orthopedic doctors diagnose?

An orthopedic doctor will diagnose any issue or injury affecting the musculoskeletal system of the human body. This will include:

  • bone cancer
  • joint or back pain
  • arthritis
  • carpal tunnel syndrome
  • bone fractures
  • muscle strains
  • tendon and ligament injuries
  • ACL tears
  • limb abnormalities
What all do orthopedic doctors treat?

When you are referred to an orthopedic doctor, you likely have an issue with your bones, ligaments, tendons, or joints. Orthopedic doctors treat a variety of injuries and conditions, including:

  • fractures
  • strains
  • sprains
  • tendonitis
  • clubfoot
  • bowlegs
  • bone cancers
  • joint pain
  • back pain
  • arthritis
  • carpal tunnel syndrome
  • and more
Do orthopedic surgeons work in hospitals?

Orthopedic surgeons may work in a hospital, but many work in private practice.

What is a physician’s assistant?

A physician’s assistant, often referred to as a PA, is a professional in the healthcare industry working with doctors. PAs can give medical treatment, and their duties will depend on the state laws and the supervising doctor.

When might I see a physician’s assistant?

It is common to see a physician’s assistant when your injury or issue is not an emergency. They can do patient exams, diagnose illness, write prescriptions, and even assist with surgery.

What to expect in physical therapy?

Your physical therapy will begin with an evaluation to assess your overall mobility and strength. Once the evaluation is done, your physical therapist will work with your physician to create a plan to increase strength and mobility. This plan may involve one-on-one appointments where you may perform specific exercises and stretches at a gym-like facility.

You will likely receive a set of simple exercises to do at home, as well. As a part of physical therapy, you can expect a customized plan including one or more of the activities listed below:

  • Heat and cold therapy
  • Massage
  • Exercise to help with daily activities
  • Muscle retraining
  • Gait training
  • Pain management strategies
  • Strength and flexibility exercise
What should I bring to my appointment?

You will need a few things for your first appointment, including:

  • Photo ID
  • Your Insurance Card
  • A form of Payment
  • Referral information
  • Any relevant imaging

It is also a good idea to wear comfortable clothing as you might do some exercises at your first physical therapy appointment.

What do I need to know for surgery?

When you know you have an upcoming surgery, your physician will likely give you instructions to follow. These may include things like not smoking, eating good meals to prepare for surgery, and exercising. On the day of your surgery, you may be given instructions to stop eating at a specific time and about what you should bring for surgery. Your physician will also provide instructions for what to do after surgery, which may include specific things to do or to avoid, depending on the surgery.

What are the most common orthopedic surgeries?

The most common type of orthopedic surgery is ACL reconstruction surgery. Knee surgeries are relatively common, including knee replacement surgeries. Other common orthopedic surgeries include:

  • Shoulder replacement surgery
  • Knee arthroscopy
  • Hip replacement surgery
  • Spinal surgeries
  • Trigger finger release
  • Ankle repair
What kind of training does an orthopedic surgeon have?

An orthopedic surgeon will have completed all of the following training:

  • Four-year undergraduate education
  • Passing of the MCAT
  • Four-year medical school education
  • Passing of the USMLE
  • Five years of residency training at a major medical center
  • An optional year of orthopedic subspecialty training
  • Two years of practice in the chosen field
  • Passing a final exam to become a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery


What is a hip pointer injury?

A severe injury caused to the iliac crest of the pelvis is often called a hip pointer injury. This is because the most prominent hip bone is the ilium, and the iliac crest is the upper ridge of this point. When bruising is caused to this area and potential bleeding into the hip abductor muscles, it causes pain when coughing, breathing deeply, laughing, or walking. 

Can a hip injury cause knee pain?

Yes. A hip injury may cause knee pain. The hip muscles, such as the Gluteus Medius, controls knee position when walking, jumping, and running. Therefore, knee pain is relatively common when suffering from a hip injury.

How long does a hip flexor injury take to heal?

The time it takes to heal from a hip flexor injury depends on the severity of the injury. In some cases, a minor injury can heal within 1 to 3 weeks. If the injury is more severe, it can take 4 to 6 weeks or longer. When a hip flexor injury goes untreated, it can take even longer or could lead to chronic pain.

How to cure a hip flexor injury?

Treating hip flexor injuries properly can help the healing process. Resting immediately after the injury is the first choice for treatment. Other treatment options that can help cure a hip flexor injury include:

  • Cold therapy – This type of treatment can help to reduce inflammation in the damaged tissues and relieve the hip flexor pain.
  • Advanced exercises – The right exercises to stretch the quadriceps, hamstrings, calf muscles, and hip flexors can help prevent future injury and health the muscles contributing to current hip flexor pain.
  • Medication – Treating hip flexor pain with medication is not a cure but can provide temporary relief. In addition, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs may help to reduce inflammation.
  • Physical Therapy – A common choice for treating hip flexor pain, physical therapy includes exercises to strengthen the muscles. It can also include massage and biomechanical correction.
  • Compression – With the proper compression treatment, swelling can be reduced, leading to reducing pain and increasing mobility.
How to wrap a hip flexor injury?

Wrapping a hip flexor injury with an ACE bandage can help provide compression. The steps are pretty simple and include:

  1. Bending your injured leg just slightly at the knee.
  2. Start at the bottom of your thigh with the wrap.
  3. Roll the wrap starting inside your leg and around the outside and continue until your entire thigh is wrapped.
  4. Finish by rolling the wrap around your lower back and back around your thigh. Do this until the entire wrap has been used.
  5. Use taping to secure the wrap and use it in the same pattern to put the wrap on.
  6. Make sure you do not wrap your hip flexor too tightly, or you might cut off circulation.
How to recover from a hip injury?

Recovering from a hip injury requires following the treatment plan provides by your doctor. Your treatment plan will likely include physical therapy, compression, rest, and, potentially, medication. However, the most important ingredient for hip injury recovery is time. 

Can a hip injury cause back pain?

Yes. There is quite a bit of overlap between hip injuries and back pain. It is common for both hip pain and back pain to come from wear and tear on the body. It is best to seek the advice of a sports medicine doctor or orthopedic surgeon to find out what is causing your back pain.


What can cause knee pain without injury?

If you are suffering from knee pain without an obvious accident or injury, you might be wondering where it came from. Kneed pain without injury is usually an injury impacting the connective tissues, such as the ligaments, cartilage, or tendons. 

Some of the common causes of knee pain without injury include bursitis, knee tendonitis, infection, knee arthritis, or iliotibial band syndrome. An injury could also cause it to your hip, ankle, or foot.

How do I know if my knee injury is serious?

If you have suffered from a knee injury, you might be wondering if it is serious. Some of the common signs your knee injury is serious include:

  • Swelling
  • Deformation
  • An audible pop when injured
  • More range of motion than normal
  • Inability to bear weight on your knee
  • It is not possible to straighten your leg

If you are suffering from any of these signs, it is time to see a doctor.

How to treat a knee injury?

The first step to treat a knee injury is to control the swelling. This is done by using the RICE method, which is:

  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Compress
  • Elevate

Along with RICE, you will also want to treat the pain with medication, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. 

If your knee injury is serious, call a doctor and make an appointment for treatment. Your doctor will provide more options for treating your knee injury, which may include physical therapy or surgery.

How long does a knee injury take to heal?

The length of time it takes for your knee injury to heal depends on the injury and the treatment used. It is common for serious knee injuries to take many months to heal. Your age will also play a factor in your ability to heal quickly.

Below are some of the common knee injuries and how long they take to heal:

  • Torn Meniscus – One to two months
  • Sprain – Two to four weeks
  • ACL Tear – Seven to Nine months
  • Dislocated Knee – Six or more weeks

Your doctor will provide a better idea of how long it will take you to heal.

Can a knee injury cause ankle swelling?

Yes, a knee injury may cause ankle swelling. This is most common when there is a Baker’s cyst. 

How to stay in shape with a knee injury?

After recovering from a knee injury, you will want to stay in shape to avoid a future injury. Unfortunately, old injuries can make you more likely for a future injury. Some of the common exercises you can use to prevent future knee injury include:

  • Swimming
  • Biking
  • Using an elliptical machine
  • Proper stretching
  • Exercises provided by your physical therapist

With the right exercises, you can strengthen the muscles supporting your knee.

How long should I ice my knee after an injury?

In the most common of situations, a knee injury should be iced for 15 to 20 minutes at a time. If you leave ice on longer, it might lead to skin irritation or a burn. It can also keep the nutrients you need from getting to the knee to help with healing if you ice it for too long.

After icing your knee for 15 to 20 minutes, you want to wait a few hours before icing it again. You can also ice the knee for a few minutes and take a shorter break of about 30 minutes in between.

How to strengthen knee ligaments after an injury?

After you have suffered an injury, it is best to strengthen knee ligaments to avoid future injury. Some of the things you can do include:

  • Strengthening exercises – Ankle press, straight leg raise, knee extension exercise, and static quadricep exercise
  • Range of motion exercises – Knee bending in sitting, kneed bending in lying, and ankle foot toe movement exercise
  • Weight-bearing exercise
  • Any exercise provided by your physical therapist

With the right exercises, you can strengthen your knee ligaments after an injury.

What kind of knee injury do I have?

It is not easy to figure out what type of knee injury you have on your own. Many knee injuries have similar symptoms, such as pain, swelling, and tenderness. It is best to see a doctor if you believe your knee injury is serious. Your doctor will be able to diagnose your injury for you.


How to heal a shoulder injury?

Healing a shoulder injury will likely start with rest, heat, and ice. You may also need ibuprofen or aspirin to help with reducing the swelling and pain. Further treatment options will likely need to come from your doctor and depend on the type of shoulder injury you are suffering from.

What can cause shoulder pain without injury?

Injury is a common cause of shoulder pain, but there are other causes. Tendonitis and bursitis are relatively common causes of shoulder pain without injury. It could also be arthritis, calcific tendonitis, a frozen shoulder, or even a spinal issue. 

How to treat a shoulder injury?

Shoulder injury treatment starts with rest, heat, and ice. You may also need physical therapy. If you are dealing with a severe shoulder injury, your doctor may use injections, surgery, physical therapy, or another type of treatment for your injury. The treatment will depend on the type of injury you are suffering from.

How to diagnose a shoulder injury?

Self-diagnosing your shoulder pain isn’t a good idea. Some shoulder pain may be caused by injury, while another type of pain can be caused by something outside the shoulder. So it is bat to allow a trained medical professional to diagnose your shoulder pain.

Many shoulder injuries have similar symptoms, such as pain, swelling, and loss of range of motion. If you are suffering from shoulder pain, it best to see a doctor and let your doctor treat your pain.

Can a shoulder injury cause neck pain?

Yes. It is common for some shoulder injuries to cause neck pain. For example, even a torn rotator cuff may cause some neck pain.

How to sleep with a shoulder injury?

When you suffer from a shoulder injury, you might need to switch sleeping positions. It can help stretch your shoulder before going to bed, and over-the-counter painkillers can help dull the pain.

It is important to avoid sleeping on the impacted arm. If you have a reclining bed or chair, it may be helpful for sleeping with a shoulder injury. You can also use a shoulder pillow to help ease the pressure when sleeping.

How can shoulder injuries be prevented?

There are several ways to help prevent shoulder injuries. Starting with a warm-up before exercising or competing is a good start. You can also do specific exercises to increase your shoulder strength. Getting proper rest and changing your sleep position can also help you avoid shoulder injury.

How to lift with a shoulder injury?

While it is likely you shouldn’t be lifting anything with a shoulder injury; sometimes, you might need to. The first thing to remember is, if it hurts, don’t lift anymore. 

If you must lift something, make sure it is not very heavy. Any heavy lifting should be avoided with a shoulder injury. Of course, follow the doctor’s orders with lifting, too.

What exercises can I do with a shoulder injury?

Depending on the severity of the injury, you may not be able to perform any exercises. However, if your injury isn’t serious, you may just need to lessen the amount of weight when doing shoulder exercises.

The best exercises to do with a shoulder injury are those prescribed by a physical therapist or doctor. With the right medical help, you can find out which exercises can help you to recover faster from your injury.