Female doctor wraps young girl's injured ankle

What is the Difference Between Orthopedic Urgent Care and the Emergency Room?

Many people face this dilemma every day. Orthopedic urgent care center options are becoming increasingly common, but what distinguishes them from emergency rooms is often unclear.

It is very important to know the difference so you can get the best immediate care you need for the specific nature of your condition. What differentiates orthopedic urgent care clinics and the ER is their scope and expertise of care and treatment. 

If your orthopedic injury needs immediate attention but is not life-threatening, an orthopedic urgent care clinic will be the most efficient, time-saving and cost-effective option for you. 

Orthopedic Urgent Care Centers

Orthopedic urgent care centers are perfect for many orthopedic injuries. They’re also ideal outside of normal business hours and days.

Urgent care centers handle non-life-threatening orthopedic issues, and many are staffed with doctors and nurses equipped to respond quickly, often with access to on-site labs and X-rays. 

Non-life-threatening musculoskeletal illnesses and injuries, treatable at orthopedic urgent care clinics: 

·      Back and Joint Pain

·      Concussions

·      Dislocated Joints

·      Fractures

·      Ligament or Tendon Tears

·      Sprains and Strains

Professionally equipped orthopedic urgent care centers offer turnkey services for patients of all ages, for accurate evaluation, diagnoses, and treatments all in one place. At an orthopedic urgent care clinic, you should find the following services:

·      Athletic Primary Care

·      Casting, Bracing, and Splinting

·      Comprehensive Diagnostic and Imaging

·      Physical and Occupational Therapy

·      Sports Medicine

Emergency Rooms vs. Orthopedic Urgent Care

Orthopedic urgent care centers can fill in for your regular orthopedist when he or she is not available. These centers are also affordably priced – especially compared to the emergency room. Wait times are much shorter than at ERs, with the majority of patients are treated and discharged within an hour. No appointments are needed and walk-ins are welcome.

Hospital emergency rooms, on the other hand, can tackle any kind of medical emergency, no matter how minor or severe. But they should be left free to cater to actual life-threatening situations. For example, an ER uses a system known as triage, which gives priority to serious cases. Patients are not treated on a first-come-first-served basis. A heart-attack would take priority over an orthopedic case, even if they’ve been in line longer. 

The choice between an orthopedic urgent care and emergency rooms depends upon the severity of your orthopedic problem.  

The orthopedic urgent care clinic of Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence is your go-to destination for urgent, specialized orthopedic care. We can diagnose and treat your issues with a variety of treatment options. Call (719) 623-1050 for more information.