Your musculoskeletal system is a complex and interrelated network of muscles, bones, joints, connective tissues, and nerves. If you happen to sustain a sports injury, fall down the stairs, or fall prey to arthritis or another degenerative condition, you may not be able to fully function and carry out your daily life. Let’s look at how to determine if your condition or injury requires the services of a board-certified orthopedic doctor.
What Does an Orthopedic Doctor Do?
An orthopedic doctor evaluates and treats people who have life-impacting issues related to the musculoskeletal system. These issues include:
- Sprains, strains, and fractures
- Dislocated joints
- Arthritis, bursitis, and other inflammatory conditions
- Trauma, including limb loss and head injury
- Chronic pain in the back, hip, knee, shoulder, elbow, wrist, and other joints
- Sports injuries, including ligament, tendon, and cartilage tears, and repetitive motion injuries
An orthopedic physician may subspecialize in areas such as pediatrics, rehabilitation, joint replacement surgery, or arthroscopic and reconstructive surgery. They are able to prescribe medications for pain relief in addition to providing physical and occupational therapies to help people recover from an injury or surgery, or to deal with the daily impact of nerve damage or arthritis.
Most importantly, orthopedic doctors value patient education. They want their patients to understand their conditions and to handle them successfully. They also want to prevent injury and disease and promote healthy lifestyles and safety while at home, at work, or on the field.
Do You Have Chronic Pain?
If you have back or joint pain, or pain from a sprain, strain, or other musculoskeletal injury, then you should see an orthopedic specialist. This doctor can offer a wide range of hands-on treatment options, including physical therapy and regenerative medicine. Your orthopedic doctor’s ultimate goal is to get to the source of your pain and help you manage it without relying on addictive pain medications.
Do You Need Treatment for an Old or New Injury?
Home remedies, such as rest, ice, compression, and elevation of the affected body part, don’t always work. When symptoms of redness, pain, and swelling persist, or if a noticeable deformity or loss of sensation develops when you’re injured, see an orthopedic specialist right away for:
- A complete examination.
- Imaging assessments, such as X-rays or an MRI.
- Bracing, casting, and durable medical equipment.
At Watauga Orthopaedics, we offer detailed assessments on a walk-in basis for all your urgent orthopedic needs. We are proud to serve patients of all ages, including children.
The Finest Orthopedic Doctors in Southwest Virginia and Northeast Tennessee
Find an orthopedic doctor near you at the three locations of Watauga Orthopaedics in Johnson City, Kingsport, and Bristol. We have a complete and dedicated staff of board-certified physicians, therapists, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants ready to serve you.