Orthopedics is the branch of medicine concerned with diseases, injuries and other conditions of the musculoskeletal system. The musculoskeletal system consists of the body's bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments and nerves.
Thousands of area residents wake up each morning with stiff, sore, worn-out hip and knee joints. Whether it is a sporting accident, joint problems or the long-term effects of arthritis, the quality care provided by the orthopedic specialists at Saint Francis Hospital will help get you up and running in no time.
There are many types of orthopedic conditions with characteristic symptoms that require specific treatment. By knowing more about your condition, your treatment can be more effective. Some of the most common types of orthopedic conditions include:
- Back and spine conditions
- Arthritic conditions
- Foot and ankle conditions
- Hand, wrist and upper extremity conditions
- Degenerative hip, knee and shoulder conditions
- Pediatric injuries
- Shoulder pain
- Sports related injuries
Another common type of orthopedic condition that affects many of us is osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis, also sometimes called degenerative joint disease, is a common condition that most people will develop in their knees, hips, hands, feet and back. It is a degenerative condition resulting in the breakdown of cartilage in the joints that causes joint pain and stiffness. When osteoarthritis occurs it causes cartilage, the cushion around the ends of bones in joints, to break down, resulting in bone rubbing on bone. This rubbing can cause bone damage and joints can become extremely painful.
Initially, osteoarthritis may be treated with over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen, or prescription pain relievers and pain relief creams, or steroid injections. Knee or hip replacement surgery is not considered an option until you have tried the other available conservative treatment options. Hip replacement surgery can help reposition bones to redistribute stress on the joint and/or remove loose pieces of bone and cartilage from joints. It is important to understand that knee or hip replacement surgery is only considered when you can no longer enjoy your normal active lifestyle.