• Am I a Good Candidate for Orthopedic Surgery?

    on Dec 11th, 2018

Do any of your joints hurt when you attempt to carry out daily activities, such walking, bringing groceries into the house, or carrying laundry up and down the stairs? You may be suffering from the result of a sports injury that has damaged your tissues and joints, or you could be feeling the effects of arthritis due to age.

Whatever the cause, you may be a candidate for orthopedic surgery. This type of surgery deals with treating disorders of your musculoskeletal system, which includes your bones, joints, muscles, ligaments, tendons, and nerves.

Dr. J. Michael Bennett, who practices in Houston, can see if you’re a candidate for orthopedic surgery and get you back to doing the things you love. He’ll also see if simpler treatments, such as physical therapy or acupuncture, can help you.

What types of tests help determine if you need orthopedic surgery?

Dr. Bennett performs several diagnostic tests to determine the condition of your tissues and joints. First, he conducts a physical exam. He’ll test your range of motion by seeing how far you can turn the affected joint before you feel pain. He may also order X-rays or a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) test to help determine the extent of deterioration or damage to your joint.

If your joint damage is mild, lifestyle changes or simple physical supports may be able to reduce your pain. For example, if you have wrist pain and are developing carpal tunnel syndrome, you may benefit significantly from a split keyboard or a wrist support.

If a lifestyle accommodation doesn’t benefit you, and you have mild to moderate joint damage, physical therapy may be helpful. If therapy doesn’t improve your symptoms, then Dr. Bennett may recommend surgery.

Furthermore, if Dr. Bennett finds that you have extensive joint damage or deterioration, he may recommend surgery straight away.

Orthopedic surgery has advanced by leaps and bounds in the past few decades. Many orthopedic surgeries today are minimally invasive procedures that use arthroscopy. Arthroscopy involves using small incisions as well as small tools and a tiny camera to perform the operation. Besides causing as little damage as possible, arthroscopic surgery can require less recovery time than traditional open surgery.

Are there alternative treatments for joint pain besides physical therapy or surgery?

Studies indicate that acupuncture may help arthritis patients. Most studies have been done on the knee. Some insurance companies now cover acupuncture treatments to relieve joint pain and arthritis. However, it may only delay the need for surgery.

 

To see if you’re a candidate for orthopedic surgery, book an appointment online or over the phone with Dr. J. Michael Bennett today.

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