Most people think that orthopedic doctors always perform surgeries to repair musculoskeletal problems and injuries, but that’s not the case. An orthopedic doctor first explores all nonsurgical treatment options to address musculoskeletal issues. They consider and perform surgery only when a musculoskeletal injury or degenerative condition does not respond to nonsurgical therapies, or when the patient suffers from a problem that warrants surgical intervention right away.
In this blog, we talk about treatment options other than surgery that an orthopedic doctor offers to treat problems related to muscles, bones, ligaments, tendons, and joints.
Nonsurgical Treatments Orthopedic DoctorsOffer
An orthopedic doctor will always start by evaluating the symptoms of the musculoskeletal condition or injury. They will perform a physical exam and order some tests to make or confirm their diagnosis. Then, they will develop a treatment plan, which may consist of surgical or nonsurgical modalities, depending on the condition and needs of the patient.
Common nonsurgical treatment options your orthopedic doctor can offer to manage your condition or prevent a future injury include the following:
Pain and inflammation are common complaints of people with many orthopedic injuries and conditions. So, to control pain and inflammation that could otherwise directly affect the healing process, an orthopedic doctor may recommend oral and/or topical medication. Commonly prescribed medications are acetaminophen, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, muscle relaxants, anti-depressants, and/or opioid analgesics (not for long-term use).
Your orthopedic doctor can also recommend steroidal injections when oral and topical medications fail. For example, orthopedic doctors can inject a cortisone injection, sometimes along with an anesthetic, into joint or spine to decrease pain, reduce inflammation, and improve mobility.
Bracing And Casting
Sometimes, injuries like Achilles tendonitis and ankle sprains require immobilization for proper healing. So, an orthopedic doctor may use a brace or cast to keep the injured area immobilized before considering other nonsurgical or surgical options. Bracing and casting provide excellent support for recovery and healing.
Physical therapy is often a part of the nonsurgical treatment of musculoskeletal issues like arthritis. A physical therapy program offered by a physical therapist aims to reduce pain and swelling, as well as improve or restore the function of the injured body part. Physical therapy exercises increase strength, flexibility, endurance, coordination and balance, and range of motion.
Platelet-Rich Plasma Therapy
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy is used for various orthopedic injuries and problems ranging from sprains to chronic tendon injuries. Orthopedic doctors also use PRP therapy for the treatment of Achilles tendonitis, pulled hamstrings, knee arthritis, and Jumper’s knee, among others.
With PRP therapy, plasma that is rich in platelets and growth factors is taken from a sample of the patient’s blood and then injected into the site of damage to boost healing.
Stem Cell Therapy
Stem cell therapy is considered a miracle treatment due to its potential regenerative properties. An orthopedic doctor uses stem cells (especially mesenchymal stem cells) to repair and replenish damaged or degenerated tissues. Commonly, stem cell therapy is used for injuries of soft tissues, arthritis, tendinopathy, avascular necrosis, fractures, and more.
Orthopedic Doctor in Naples FL
At the Joint Replacement Institute, our experts are highly skilled, experienced, and compassionate doctors who are committed to offering personalized care for everyone’s healthcare needs. They will evaluate your problem, assess symptoms, order tests, make a diagnosis, and devise a treatment plan that may include nonsurgical or surgical modalities to provide you with a long-lasting solution. At our facility, we also offer diagnostic imaging techniques.