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Finding the Best Orthopedic Surgeon in Colorado Springs

An orthopedic injury or chronic condition can be more than just painful – it can seriously affect your ability to perform routine activities, including those you enjoy. That’s why it’s important to entrust your orthopedic care to only the best orthopedic surgeon.

 But how do you go about vetting the best orthopedist? Simple. By focusing on the surgeon’s:

Technical Ability and Track Record of Success

You might want to start by asking your primary care doctor who they would use to handle their surgery if they were in your situation. You can also get recommendations from friends and family who have had experience with orthopedic specialists. Once you arrange a consultation, ask the prospective orthopedist how many procedures they have done in the past year, what were the outcomes, and what, if any, were the complications.

Level of Training

Find out where the orthopedist received their medical degree. Inquire as to where they may have received additional fellowship training, which involves another year of training beyond a routine orthopedic residency. Does the surgeon sub-specialize in a specific area? The more advanced the training, the better it reflects on the surgeon’s technical skills.

Hospital Affiliations

This is where you will undergo your surgery, so you’ll want to evaluate the quality of care at these facilities. It matters, not just because of the convenience of the hospital’s location, but also because it’s a well-known fact that patients who undergo treatment at top-quality hospitals have fewer complications and higher survival and success rates.

Rapport With You

Trust between patient and doctor is important, but so is compatibility, especially when it comes to communicating with one another. In fact, it can affect the success of your treatment. That’s because undergoing an orthopedic procedure is often the start of a long-term relationship. For example, following a joint replacement, you will probably need to see the surgeon for follow-up visits for years to come. If that’s the case, you’ll want to feel comfortable with your choice of specialist and able to maintain a friendly and beneficial relationship.

Do Your Research

In your search for the best orthopedic surgeon, you can also check out online reviews and satisfaction surveys, as long as you realize that these are limited to a small segment of the doctor’s clientele and may not address your specific medical needs. It’s better to ask your primary care physician for a referral list, then research each doctor’s credentials and experience on Healthgrades.com.

As a practical matter, you should also choose an orthopedic surgeon who not only meets the desired criteria, but also participates in your insurance plan. That way, you’ll receive the best care while paying the least amount out-of-pocket.

Top Orthopedic Surgeons in Colorado Springs

For world-class orthopedic surgeons in Colorado Springs, it’s worth your while to check out the Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence.

Our physicians are board-certified and fellowship-trained, with experience treating a variety of injuries and chronic orthopedic conditions.

Call us at (719) 623-1050 or schedule an appointment today.

Renown Orthopedic Surgeon Jason Weisstein, MD Joins Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence

Jason Scott Weisstein, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.C.S.COLORADO SPRINGS – July 10, 2018 – The Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence (CCOE) is pleased to welcome Dr. Jason Scott Weisstein to its orthopaedic team, adding a whole new dimension in the orthopaedic care provided by the practice.

A renowned orthopedic surgeon who specializes in joint replacement and tumor surgery, Dr. Weisstein’s interest lies in the restoration of function in bones and joints that are in jeopardy from arthritis, tumors, dysplasia, trauma or other conditions.

Dr. Weisstein comes to the Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence after having directed one of the largest joint replacement programs in California, and most recently, as Director of the Center for Joint Preservation and Replacement at the internationally esteemed Paley Institute in Florida. In addition to regularly teaching other surgeons around the country about minimally invasive anterior hip replacement and knee replacement surgery, he has taught residents and fellows state of the art orthopaedic surgery at major academic medical centers, including the University of Washington Medical Center, one of the top orthopaedic surgery institutions in the nation.

A native of southern California, Dr. Weisstein graduated with honors as valedictorian from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City. He also received a Masters of Public Health at New York’s Columbia University. From his work and research, he found his niche in orthopedics.

Dr. Weisstein is board-certified by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery, and is a fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, the American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons and the American College of Surgeons.

Why CCOE? Dr. Weisstein explains that CCOE provides expert care in a variety of orthopedic specialties and sports medicine, but there was no specialist on staff whose main area of expertise was primary and revision hip and knee replacement, or bone and soft tissue tumor surgery. To fill that need, CCOE recruited Dr. Weisstein, who says he “couldn’t be happier to be in Colorado at CCOE. The medical and office staff here are some of the best I have ever seen. They are the kind of medical professionals that I would want to treat my own family,” he added.

David Lewis, CEO of CCOE is excited for the new dimension in care Dr. Weisstein brings to the practice. “We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Weisstein to CCOE, and are excited to have an expert in primary and complex revision joint replacement as well as bone and soft tissue tumor care join our team. Dr. Weisstein’s expertise and sub-specialty interests bring a whole new level of care to our practice”.

Described by his peers as “a doctor’s doctor,” Dr. Weisstein says his focus is on treating his patients as “unique individuals” and looks forward to making a difference in each of his patient’s road to wellness.  Above all, he values the doctor-patient relationship and helping people restore function and alleviate pain.

Dr. Weisstein is accepting new patients now. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Weisstein or to learn more about the service provided by CCOE, visit www.ccoe.us, or call 719-623-1050.

About Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence

When it comes to world-class orthopedic care, look no further than Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence. With expertise spanning a variety of orthopaedic specialties, CCOE has provided care – and served as team doctors – for the U.S. Olympic Team, as well as patients in every walk of life. When quality, integrity, and real, lasting results are what you need, go with the gold standard and look to our orthopedic doctors for award-winning orthopedic and sports medicine treatment. Visit CCOE online at www.ccoe.us, or call 719-623-1050.

PRWeb Press Release

Podiatrist vs. Orthopedist

When you have a problem with your foot or ankle that needs medical attention, where do you go – to a podiatrist or an orthopedic surgeon? And does it make a difference?

To answer those questions, let’s first look at what each of these specialists do.

A podiatrist is a doctor of podiatric medicine (DPM), specifically a specialist whose focus is strictly on foot and ankle care. That includes treatment of such conditions as:

·       Bunions

·       Toe and hindfoot fractures

·       Diabetic ulcers and wounds

·       Plantar fasciitis (inflammation of connective tissue on the bottom of the foot)

·       Hallux rigidus (stiff big toe)

·       Flat feet

·       Gout

·       Toenail disease

·       Heel spurs

·       Athlete’s foot

·       Corns

An orthopedic surgeon is a medical doctor (MD), specifically a specialist whose focus is on the care of bones, muscles, ligaments, tendons and nerves throughout the body – including in the foot and ankle. In regard to the latter, that includes treatment of such conditions as:

·       Achilles tendon tear and repair

·       Ankle replacement and cartilage restoration

·       Bunions

·       Flat feet

·       Plantar fasciitis

·       Heel spurs

·       Morton’s neuroma (nerve inflammation near the toes)

·       Hammer toe, mallet toe, and claw toe deformities

·       Stress fractures

·       Toe fractures

·       Hindfoot fractures

·       Metatarsal (forefoot fracture)

As you can see, both podiatrists and orthopedists perform many of the same foot and ankle procedures. Both are highly trained and qualified to treat foot and ankle conditions both surgically and non-surgically. The only discernible difference between them is that an orthopedist manages parts of the foot and ankle that pertain to the bones, soft tissues and joints, while a podiatrist manages the same areas, but also the biomechanics and dermatology of the foot and ankle. For instance, a podiatrist is often an integral care provider for people with diabetes who have serious concerns about foot health.

So, who do you choose for diagnosis and treatment of your foot or ankle problem?

It often depends on your particular foot or ankle problem – and how comfortable you are with one doctor over another. But it’s a dilemma you don’t have to face at Colorado Center for Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs. That’s because our practice specializes in both podiatry and foot and ankle orthopedics.

Our board-certified podiatric surgeon Dr. Frederick Hainge is highly skilled in diagnosing and treating structural and biomechanical issues, wounds, toe and foot deformities, nerve pain, and much more.

Meanwhile, fellowship-trained Dr. John Shank and our team of orthopedic physicians help patients manage their foot and ankle conditions through reconstructive procedures, arthroscopic and open fusion surgeries, physical therapy, and other procedures. And it’s all done under one roof.

The Colorado Center for Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs regularly treats injuries to bones and joints, providing the best of care. If a foot or ankle injury or pain is cause for concern, our board-certified orthopedic surgeons will quickly diagnose and treat the condition. Call us at (719) 623-1050 today for an appointment.

Can Scoliosis Occur Later in Life?

Scoliosis is a condition where the spine curves to the left or right. It can be slight or severe, and there may or may not be a defined reason for developing the condition. Most of the time, scoliosis develops around the time of puberty. Adolescent girls get scoliosis more than boys, and children more than adults. In rare cases, scoliosis can also develop during adulthood.

Your spine has natural curves, like an S, that gently support your body and its movement. When a person has scoliosis, a sideways curvature is present. Some of the symptoms of scoliosis include pain, tingling in the extremities, and noticeable abnormalities in posture (like uneven shoulders or stooping). Nobody knows why people develop scoliosis, but there is some evidence of hereditary factors. 

There are two types of scoliosis, idiopathic and degenerative. Idiopathic scoliosis usually develops in and is diagnosed in young adolescents. Idiopathic scoliosis may not be diagnosed until adulthood, either because there may have been no symptoms for many years, or the curvature has become more pronounced.

Degenerative scoliosis is more likely to occur in adults. Just like many orthopedic conditions faced by older adults, degenerative scoliosis is preceded by wearing down of the cartilage between the bones of the spine. The spinal bones collapse against each other and can deviate to the side. Osteoarthritis of the spine results in scoliosis for some people. Some patients will also have osteoporosis also add the possible complication of a fracture due to the pressure on the spinal curvature. But just as idiopathic scoliosis may not cause any symptoms or discomfort, the same is true for degenerative scoliosis. There is no need for treatment if it is not causing the patient any issues with pain or mobility. Of course, a patient is unlikely to seek treatment and be diagnosed if there are no troubling symptoms.

Some possible reasons for the increase in cases of adult scoliosis are that people are living longer, and more active lives. Wear and tear of the cartilage in the back happens more quickly when there is more movement, such as from running, playing sports, or just walking. People also are more likely to seek out help for back pain than they may have been in the past. As the field of orthopedic medicine develops and specialists are more widely available, people increasingly know where to go with their back pain and they have more trust in orthopedic physicians who can help.

The severity of scoliosis is measured in degrees that the spine moves away from the center. If the curve is less than 40 degrees, most of the time conservative methods of treatment are effective in reducing or eliminating symptoms and preventing further curvature. Conservative treatments may include medication, physical therapy, or braces to provide stability and decrease pain. Surgical correction is a possible treatment for severe cases of scoliosis. Spinal surgery carries a significant risk of complications, so it is not normally considered unless there is severe pain or deformity. Each case is unique, so the surgery is performed with the goal of preventing further pain and damage in addition to correcting the abnormalities. 

Patients in the Colorado Springs area who have sports injuries or any orthopedic injury trust the Colorado Center for Orthopaedic Excellence to provide the best care. If you have an orthopedic injury or condition, call (719) 623-1050 for an appointment today.

What is Nursemaid Elbow Syndrome?

For a lot of children, one of their favorite games they used to play with your parents was having them hold onto both of their hands or arms, and as they’d count to three, they would lift and swing you up high up into the air over and over as if you were flying. We think of little kids as having pretty resilient bones, but this fun and warmhearted scenario doesn’t always end up favorably.

Did you know that for little children, this game can lead to an injury? But, it is not just this game, but any scenario when the arms are being held onto or yanked in general.

While many parents and caregivers may enjoy taking a child’s hands and wrists and swinging them as they walk in-between, doing so can result in injury. This common childhood injury is known as nursemaid’s elbow syndrome, or radial head subluxation (RHS).

Nursemaid’s elbow syndrome can be a very common injury to young children. When we are young, our bones and ligaments are not fully developed yet. As we develop into adults, our bones form and grow with us. In other words, our ligaments tighten and become thicker, bones enlarge and harden. Therefore, when we do get older the risk of getting injuries such as nursemaid’s elbow decreases.

However, kids are often rough and active, obviously making them prone to injuries such as sprains and broken bones, commonly to the arms. Children are also susceptible to having bones slip out of place.

Like the name implies, in many cases children are under the care of some sort of caregiver or a babysitter of some sort, like a nurse does in a hospital. When this scenario of the caregiver picking up the child the wrong way occurs, it results in nursemaid’s elbow, or pulled elbow, an accidental injury that occurs when the bones in the elbow partially pop out and dislocate. What happens is that one side of the elbow separates from the other side, and part of the ligament that wraps around the bone slips off and gets stuck between the bones.

Many parents and caregivers are unaware that swinging a child by the wrists or hands can really harm and injure their child.  It is important that parents and caregivers know the danger of swinging a child by the wrists or hands. Bones are fragile and can break when there is too much force. Even though it is an accident from having fun and playing around, if not careful, more severe complications can occur.

You should discourage anybody jerking or yanking a child’s arm. Pulling or grabbing a child by the hand or wrist can cause dislocation.  It doesn’t take much force for a child’s elbow to be pulled out of place, and it just takes a little miscalculation to cause a child a lot of pain.

Nursemaid’s elbow syndrome is painful but can be fixed with treatment. In most cases, an orthopedic doctor will gently move the bones back into normal position, by performing a procedure known as reduction. A joint reduction can be quite painful, albeit quick, and then the healing process can take place.

The doctor will hold the child’s wrist or forearm with the palm of the hand facing upwards. While putting pressure near the top of the radius bone, one of the bones in the forearm other than the ulna, the doctor will slowly bend the elbow in an attempt to pop or click the elbow joint back into place. Once the bones are put back into place, the pain and discomfort subside. If the injury is more severe, surgery may be required.

To learn more about nursemaid’s elbow syndrome, call Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs at (719) 623-1050 to request an appointment with our orthopedic surgeons, or request an appointment online.

Sports Medicine: Benefits of Working Out in the Winter

Ward off those winter blues. During the winter months, colder weather brings on the winter blues. It’s not uncommon for those snowy or overcast skies to bring about some sort of stress, lack of energy, and gloom. Due to this, people have a tendency to lose motivation and start to become inactive, wanting to instead just lay inside and watch movies all day. However, doing so comes with its downfalls, such as sickness, fatigue, allergies, and seasonal depression, called SAD (seasonal affective disorder).

This tendency to be inactive during the cold winter months is a paramount problem, as days are shorter during the winter. Well, they seem shorter to the mind and body, anyways. This is due to limited sunlight (shorter daytime, longer night), leaving people little motivation to get up and do something active.

Those of us who have trouble becoming active, blame this lack of energy on the early darkness of winter, which leaves us feeling hopeless and disempowered to make a positive change. The unfortunate irony in all this, is that we find it most difficult to exercise during the winter when we actually need it most.  

So, are you tempted to hide under your covers, eat junk food, and hibernate when cold weather hits? It certainly seems like an amazing idea or a good excuse, but exercising in the cold actually has some cool advantages!

Moderate exercise gets the body to release hormones called endorphins, and endorphins make us happy. Exercise is extremely beneficial to our overall health, both mentally and physically. It provides a boost to our mood and health, helps manage stress, helps with cognitive thinking and memory, protects our immune system, and gives us energy. In other words, the benefits of exercise are limitless.

Besides the typical winter sports you might think of, such as downhill skiing or ice skating, there are plenty of healthy activities to draw you out into the winter wonderland. Going for a hike is healthy in any weather, so long as you have the proper attire and gear. Besides downhill skiing, there are activities such as cross-country skiing, and even snowshoe hiking, that are excellent activity options. 

Along with exercise, good nutrition and diet is crucial to also maintain your weight and good health. Just because it’s cold outside, doesn’t mean you need to bulk up on the carbs and fats. Stick with a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, protein, and whole grains. And a big tip – stay hydrated during outdoor winter activities. Since it’s not as hot, people tend to think they are not perspiring, and therefore do not need as much water. You always need to stay hydrated. To motivate yourself, visualize your goal and the finish line, your body will thank you for it in the long run.

To learn more about the benefits of exercise during the wintertime, call Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs at (719) 623-1050 or request an appointment online.

What is Trigger Finger?

Being able to bend your fingers is a movement so natural to everyday use, we can take it for granted. If or when your fingers or thumb catch or lock when bent, it can be a painful condition known as trigger finger.

Ordinarily, the tendons and muscles in your hand and arms bend and straighten your fingers and thumbs. The tendon itself usually glides through the tissue (or sheath) that covers it thanks to the synovium, a lubricating membrane surrounding the joint.

But if the tendon becomes inflamed and swollen, prolonged irritation of the tendon sheath will produce scarring and thickening that inevitably impedes the tendon’s motion. As a result, bending your finger or thumb can tug the inflamed tendon through a narrower sheath, which make it snap or pop.

Repeated movement or the forceful use of the finger or thumb is usually what causes trigger finger. Although it can also be caused by rheumatoid arthritis, gout, and diabetes, or by grasping something firmly for a long period of time.

That’s why industrial workers, musicians, and farm hands often suffer from trigger finger – because they repeat finger and thumb movements often. The condition is more common among women than men, and occurs most often in people who are between 40 and 60 years old.

How Do You Know You Have Trigger Finger?

One of the most obvious symptoms of trigger finger is when you experience soreness at the base of the finger or thumb. There’s also a painful clicking or snapping sound when you bend or straighten the affected finger. The catching sensation associated with trigger finger tends to get worse after you rest the finger or thumb. The finger or thumb may lock in a bent or straight position as the condition worsens and may need to be gently straightened out with your other hand.

In some cases, the finger may be swollen and there could be a bump over the joint in the palm of the hand. Also, the finger may be stiff and painful or locked in a bent position. Of course, your doctor can examine your hand and fingers and diagnose trigger finger without a lab test or X-ray.

In terms of treating trigger finger, the first step requires resting your finger or thumb. To keep the joint from moving, your doctor may put a splint on your hand.

If your symptoms persist, your doctor may address the inflammation by prescribing drugs like ibuprofen or naproxen. Another option is injecting a steroid into the tendon sheath. Or, if your trigger finger doesn’t improve, your doctor may recommend surgery.

The recovery time from trigger finger will depend on the severity of the condition and the choice of treatment.  Splinting, for example, could last up to six weeks. However, most patients recover within a few weeks provided they rest the finger or thumb and they take anti-inflammatory medication.

The Colorado Center for Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs regularly treats injuries to bones and joints, providing the best of care. If you’ve feeling pain in your hands and suspect it may be trigger finger or another condition, our board-certified orthopedic surgeons will diagnose the condition and explain your treatment options. Call us at (719) 623-1050 today for an appointment.

Recovering from Hip Dislocation

A hip dislocation is a serious and painful injury. It is usually the result of some very strong trauma, as in the case of an automobile accident or a fall. When the smooth end of the femur, or thigh bone, is pushed out of the socket formed by the pelvis, the hip joint is said to be dislocated. Emergency treatment is necessary for this injury, and a healthy recovery is vital towards returning mobility and preventing chronic pain. 

It is possible for your doctor to realign the hip joint by hand, but because of the amount of force necessary to drive the joint out of place, there is usually at least one other injury involved. 90% of hip dislocations are posterior, where the femur is pushed behind the socket of the pelvis and 10% are anterior, where the femur is pushed forward from the pelvis. 

Often, a hip dislocation is accompanied by a fracture, either to the extremities or to part of the pelvis from the force that dislodges the femur. In this case, surgery may be necessary to correct the position of the hip and repair the fractured bone at the same time. That kind of fracture sometimes occurs when the knees impact an automobile’s dashboard when there is an accident. Safety belts and airbags are meant to help protect car riders from this type of injury.

The smooth covering of cartilage on the femur is also likely to suffer some damage from a hip dislocation. Nerves and ligaments that attach the parts of the hip and make it possible for movement are damaged and torn when the hip is dislocated, too. Regaining full ability to move without pain takes time. Recovering from a hip dislocation involves rest, medication to control swelling and pain, and will often benefit from physical therapy. You may use crutches or a cane to help balance during your recovery, and there may be some permanent nerve damage or arthritis that develops as a result of the injury. 

Hip dislocation requires emergency care from an orthopedic expert. The Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs cares for anybody in need of orthopedic care, from the victim of an auto accident to the world’s elite athletes. If you have an urgent orthopedic injury, call (719) 623-1050 today for an appointment.

When You Should See an Orthopedic Surgeon for Knee Pain

Knee pain tends to be a common problem for people that are active, have suffered an injury, or have put many years and miles on their legs. The knees bear most of your body weight, every moment that you’re upright, while allowing an extraordinary range of motion. Additional force applied through participation in sports, an auto or other accident, or just wear and tear as we get older can cause knee pain. While some medications and physical therapy can help with pain and reduced mobility, when is it time to see an orthopedic surgeon for knee pain?

If you suffer a sports injury or accident that injures your knee, you should see an orthopedic surgeon right away to prevent further damage and start the healing process immediately. If you have a repetitive stress injury or osteoarthritis, it may be harder to determine when enough is enough. The good news is that there are many treatment options available for knee pain that are extremely effective. And if you do need surgery, your orthopedic surgeon will be able to determine which procedure will be most helpful, with the least amount of disruption and rehabilitation time. 

Here are some of the knee conditions that orthopedic surgeons treat:

·        General knee pain

·        Acute and overuse injuries

·        Sports injuries

·        Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear

·        Posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) tear

·        Meniscus tear

·        Cartilage defects/flaps

·        Chondral defects

·        Patellar (knee cap) tendon tear

·        Bursitis

·        Osteoarthritis

·        Patellofemoral syndrome (pain below the knee cap)

Once you are examined by an orthopedic surgeon, some treatment options include physical therapy, injections (including viscosupplementation), or minimally-invasive surgery options. Arthroscopy can both diagnose and treat many injuries. A small tube-like instrument is inserted into a tiny incision, through which a camera shows the surgeon the inside of the knee. Damaged cartilage and tendons can be repaired by inserting precision tools through the arthroscope. Even partial and total knee replacement are now possible through minimally-invasive means, if necessary.

The Colorado Center for Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs cares for the world’s elite athletes and all who need the best care. If you have knee pain, our board-certified orthopedic surgeons will diagnose the condition and explain your treatment options. Call (719) 623-1050 today for an appointment.

I Broke a Bone, What Should I Do?

Broken bones, or fractures, are painful injuries that have a wide range in severity. Most of the time, a broken bone is caused by trauma, such as a fall, an auto accident, or other strong impact. The type of fracture, amount of pain you feel, and presence of other injuries along with the fracture should determine the course of action to take.

Types of fractures and what to do:

·       Stress fracture – This is a simple break where the bone does not come out of place. It usually happens after repeated stress, as in playing sports. You may not be able to move the part of your body with the broken bone, or it may be red, swollen and sore but able to move with some pain. Call your doctor or sports medicine specialist for an appointment the same day the injury occurs. Your doctor will confirm the fracture with an X-ray and treat it by immobilizing it as needed.

·       Stable fracture – A “clean” break where the bone remains aligned but there is a break across the bone. Depending on the amount of pain and whether you can move the limb or not, you should go to the ER for immediate treatment. If the pain is not extreme, you should call your primary care physician or orthopedic specialist for a same-day appointment.

·       Compound fracture – If a bone breaks and there is any wound that breaks the skin, it is called an open or compound fracture. The bone may be visible through the wound, or not. This type of fracture means the bone is out of place and may be broken in more than one place. Emergency help is needed, especially considering the risk of bleeding and/or infection.

·       Comminuted fracture – If a bone shatters into three or more pieces, the fracture is called comminuted. This type of fracture can occur when there is a great deal of force, like from a car accident or a bullet. Emergency attention is needed and surgery from an orthopedic physician will be necessary. 

The most advanced orthopedic care in Colorado Springs is found at Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence. From professional sports medicine including the US Olympic team, to treatment of conditions such as osteoarthritis and osteoporosis, our board-certified orthopedic surgeons provide the best possible care. If you have a non-emergent broken bone, call (719) 623-1050 for a priority appointment.