The specialized area of non-operative orthopedics involves identifying, treating, and managing musculoskeletal injuries and conditions without surgical interventions. Unlike traditional orthopedic surgery, non-operative orthopedics aims to alleviate pain, improve function, and enhance the overall quality of life. Despite the growing evidence supporting its effectiveness, many misconceptions and myths about non-operative orthopedics still exist, often hindering patients from seeking appropriate care. To assist patients in making informed decisions regarding their orthopedic care, the Upper Extremity Specialists will provide guidance and factual information to help dispel myths about this treatment option.
#Myth: Non-operative orthopedics is only for minor injuries
Fact: Non-surgical orthopedic methods successfully manage musculoskeletal injuries and ailments, including fractures, ligament and tendon injuries, arthritis, and back and neck pain. In most cases, non-surgical treatment is the primary method for managing these conditions. These techniques include various approaches, like physical therapy, medication, injections, and braces, to reduce discomfort, regain function, and prevent additional damage.
#Myth: Non-operative orthopedics is less effective than surgery
Fact: Non-surgical orthopedics have proven to be as effective as surgery in treating several musculoskeletal conditions. Scientific studies have revealed that non-surgical options can work equally well for particular issues, such as rotator cuff tears, meniscus tears, and specific types of fractures. Non-surgical treatments are less risky and require a shorter recovery than surgery, making them more desirable to many patients.
#Myth: Non-operative orthopedics is only about pain management
Fact: Non-surgical orthopedic treatment is not solely centered around pain management. It aims to enhance function and increase the range of motion in the affected area. For instance, physical therapy can help regain strength and mobility following an injury, and bracing can support and prevent further damage.
#Myth: Non-operative orthopedics is not evidence-based
Fact: Non-operative orthopedics is a proven and reliable way to treat bone, joint, and muscle problems. Research has shown that non-surgical methods are effective in managing such conditions. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) recommends non-operative treatment as the primary method for dealing with musculoskeletal conditions like Osteoporosis.
#Myth: Non-operative orthopedics is only for older patients
Fact: People of all ages, from kids to older adults, can benefit from non-surgical orthopedic treatments. This approach may be especially advantageous for younger patients since it can reduce the likelihood of needing surgery in the future.
#Myth: Non-operative orthopedics is only for athletes
Fact: Non-surgical orthopedic is not exclusive to athletes and can benefit anyone with a musculoskeletal injury or condition, regardless of their physical activity level. For instance, injections can be useful in decreasing pain and inflammation in individuals with back pain.
#Myth: Non-operative orthopedics is not covered by insurance
Fact: Many insurance policies cover various non-surgical treatments for musculoskeletal issues, including medication, injections, and braces. Insurance companies prefer non-surgical options because they are less expensive than surgical procedures. If you want to know which non-surgical treatments your insurance policy covers, it is best to contact your insurance provider.
Talk to your doctor at Upper Extremity Specialists of Ortho 1 Medical Group to determine the best course of treatment.