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Why You Should Visit Your Sports Medicine Doctor Regularly?

If you are an athlete or just enjoy playing sports, you can’t afford to take time away from your game. So, when overuse damage, orthopedic trauma, or sports injuries occur, it can be devastating to your game, your workouts, your physical health, and even your mental health. That’s why sports medicine is an integral sub-specialty of orthopedic medicine.

Sports medicine is a medical specialty that helps people recover from their sports related injuries. However, you don’t have to be a professional athlete to be susceptible to sports injuries. Recreational athletes, weekend warriors, and physically active people can receive a host of orthopedic injuries, like fractures, and muscle sprains and strains. 

Our musculoskeletal system is made up of hundreds of moving parts, all working together to allow our body to move and function at its optimal level. Sometimes these structures become injured, and are in need of treatment. The tools and techniques used by an orthopedic specialist to diagnose and treat conditions are constantly evolving. It’s good to know that there are a variety of solutions available to help your sport medicine doctor accurately diagnose disorders and injuries affecting bones, muscles, ligaments, tendon, and cartilage.

People with active lifestyles are often at risk for sports-related injuries. Board certified and fellowship-trained sports medicine specialists can properly diagnose athletic injuries and provide treatments that restore your motion and will help get you back to your sport in even better shape than before. 

At Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence, our sports medicine specialists work just as hard as you play your game, to ensure you receive an accurate diagnosis and world-class care. Some of the most frequent sports injuries we treat include:

  • Sprains and strains
  • Tendonitis and bursitis
  • Knee ligament tears and reconstruction (ACL, MCL, PCL, LCL)
  • Meniscal tears
  • Achilles tendonitis and tears
  • Shoulder instability and dislocation
  • Rotator cuff tear
  • Shoulder labrum tear
  • Shoulder impingement
  • Tennis elbow
  • Golfer’s elbow
  • Shin splints
  • Iliotibial band syndrome
  • Patellar tendonitis
  • Femoroacetabular impingement / hip labrum tear

Our sports medicine doctors use the least-invasive techniques whenever possible to treat sports injuries, but surgery may sometimes be necessary. Our fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeons operate with precision on injured joints, ligaments, and tendons to ensure that delicate nerves, tissues, and other surrounding anatomy is preserved.

Our main goal is to return you to play as quickly as possible while preventing re-injury and improving your body’s response to stress. We utilize cutting-edge diagnostic and treatment methods to eliminate pain and improve range of motion, hoping to have you feel just as good or better than you did before your injury occurred.

Caring for these problems quickly and effectively makes it possible for these athletes to return to their sports in good shape. Sports medicine focuses on helping both amateur and professional athletes improve their performance, recover from injury, and prevent future injuries. But it’s more than just that.  Sports medicine doctors are also good resources for those who need help with making better and healthy lifestyle decisions, and achieving their peak physical performancce.

At Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence, we see sports medicine as a large part of orthopedic medicine. Whether you are an amateur or professional athlete, make an appointment with one of our sports medicine specialists today by calling (719) 623-1050, or you can request one online.

Hip Replacement vs Hip Resurfacing

We don’t think about how much wear and tear our musculoskeletal system takes on a daily basis, especially our hips. As we age, everyday use wears down the bones and cartilage inside the hip joint. This natural degeneration of the bones and cartilage inside the hip is the cause of one of the most common condition affecting the hip, called osteoarthritis. This is a painful condition that causes severe chronic pain, stiffness in the joint, and limited mobility, which inhibits people from going about their daily tasks and activities. The good news, is that surgical procedures such as hip replacement or resurfacing help man people restore function and mobility, reducing the pain caused by bone on bone friction in the hip.

The hip joint is where the ball of the thigh bone (femur) joins the pelvis at a socket called the acetabulum. There is cartilage covering both the bone of the femur and the acetabulum of the pelvis in the hip joint. This helps to prevent bone on bone friction, keeping the bones from wearing down. Damage to any of the hip joint components will cause significant chronic pain, discomfort, and dysfunction (limited mobility).

There is a tissue lining surrounding the hip joint, called synovium, which produces fluid, and is responsible for lubricating the joint and providing nutrients to the cartilage of the joint. The hip joint is one the large joints of the body which most importantly enables us to have a wide range of mobility, helping the thigh move forwards and backwards. Without hip cartilage, the bones connecting the joints will rub up against each other, causing painful friction, inflammation, and in some cases, bone deformity.

If you have been suffering with hip pain and reduced function, it’s important to consult with an orthopedic specialist to diagnose the problem. If tests show that surgical intervention is required to treat your case of hip osteoarthritis, there are two solutions: hip resurfacing or hip replacement. Both hip resurfacing and hip replacement procedures involve removing the damaged hip joint and replacing it with a prosthetic joint. Hip pain is a hard condition to live with, and if you are an active person especially, not being able to do what you love is a major problem. That’s why Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence stays up to date on the best, most advance surgical options for repairing and replacing degenerative hips. So, what are the differences between hip replacement and hip resurfacing? 

Hip Replacement

Hip replacement surgery, also known as hip arthroplasty, is a technique which has become widespread in recent years in response to the need for repairing hip joints that have been damaged by injury or arthritis. According to research, last year, approximately 300,000 Americans underwent a total hip replacement to relieve the pain of an arthritic or broken hip joint.

A hip replacement is a surgical procedure where the diseased cartilage and bone of the hip joint is surgically replaced with a prosthetic joint. As mentioned before, the normal hip joint is a ball and socket joint. The socket is a “cup-shaped” component of the pelvis called the acetabulum. The ball is the head of the thighbone (femur). Hip replacement involves the surgical removal of the diseased and degenerated ball and socket joint, replacing them with an artificial hip implant, where a metal, ceramic, or plastic ball and cup socket is inserted into the femur bone. An additional rod is also used to fuse the joint together. The goal of hip resurfacing is to remove problematic areas and replace them with an artificial joint that will help the hip to work more efficiently than the damaged original.

Typical candidates for hip replacement surgery are patients experiencing hip pain who have not responded well to traditional treatment methods, such as physical therapy or pain medications. As with resurfacing, recovery from this procedure is a bit of a process, depending on the severity of the case, and the person. In most cases, patients remain hospitalized for 4 to 6 days, but usually with the aid of physical therapy, crutches or a walker, patients recovering can start walking again within a few days of the surgery. For patients who are recipients of hip replacements, their artificial hip should last up to 15 years or more, and will most importantly, improve their quality of life by allowing them to go about their lives with minimal pain.

Hip Resurfacing

Anatomically thinking, the end of the leg bone (femur) is a round ball, which fits into a space within the hip bone (socket). During hip resurfacing surgery, the ball joint is covered with a metal prosthesis while preserving the bone. 

In other words, hip resurfacing, unlike hip replacement surgery, is a procedure that only deals with the ball of the hip. During this procedure, the surgeon reshapes the damaged hip ball, which then is capped with a metal prosthesis. The damaged hip socket is also fitted with a metal prosthesis as well.

Hip resurfacing has become popular, and has attracted younger patients, because it has been said that this procedure preserves more bone, and is often considered to be a better solution than a total hip replacement. However, depending on the damage and condition of the joint, hip resurfacing may not be enough needed for repair.

Today, the sockets used during hip replacement surgery, are composed of two main components: a metal socket into which bone grows, and a plastic liner. This is an important distinction because if for some reason the hip fails and more surgery is necessary, the entire socket in a resurfaced hip most likely will need to be removed and replaced with a new one. If hip replacement surgery fails, and more surgery is needed to revise the socket, the hip resurfacing procedure is designed, so that only the plastic liner has to be revised, not the metal shell.

In other words, the fact that hip resurfacing preserves more bone is important, because having more femoral bone available will make the femoral revision easier. Physicians often say to their patients, that it is easier to deal with bone loss on the femoral side than on the socket side.

Recovery after the hip resurfacing procedure takes a bit longer than other minimally invasive surgeries, due to the procedures complex nature. Most patients are able to walk unassisted after two to three weeks. A resurfaced hip joint can last up to 20 years without complications.

To learn more about hip replacement and hip resurfacing, and if you may be a candidate, call Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs at (719) 623-1050 or request an appointment online.

The Benefits of Minimally Invasive Hip Replacement

The hip is a major joint. During a total hip replacement, which is typically an invasive procedure, the surgeon removes the top of the femur, or thigh bone, and replaces it with an artificial stem and ball, made of ceramic, metal, or plastic – inserted into the hip socket. 

During traditional hip replacement surgery, surgeons usually have to make a 12-inch incision at the thigh area, cutting through tendons and muscles in order to reach the hip joint. This will not only cause trauma to the area, but can also cause a large amount of blood to be lost, due to the invasive nature of the surgery. Not only that, during a total hip replacement, the hip is usually dislocated beforehand, which by nature causes damages to tissue in the hip, and the surrounding tissues as well.

Today, advances in medical technology has developed in multiple aspects, including: surgical techniques, patient education, patient pre-op preparation, discharge process, the way anesthesia is administered, etc. These advancements include making joint replacement a minimally-invasive procedure with cutting-edge technology such as da Vinci robotics, which has drastically improved patient health, and have led to less hospital readmissions and shorter stays. This also means that patients experience a faster recovery, and may experience a lower risk of complications.

Just like the traditional hip replacements, minimally invasive hip replacement surgery also involves replacing the damaged hip joint with prosthetic parts. However, with the procedure being minimally invasive, the surgeons use smaller incisions, causing less damage to the surrounding muscle and soft tissue. Much like arthroscopic surgery, the orthopedic surgeon is able to utilize the smallest tools and scopes possible to reduce the damage to surrounding tissue.

Other advantages of minimally invasive hip replacement include:

  • A smaller incision or pair of incisions results in a smaller post-surgery scar.
  • Less blood loss during surgery.
  • Less cutting of muscle and tissue during the procedure, resulting in shorter and easier rehabilitation.
  • The procedure may require a hospital stay of only one or two days, and can even be done as an outpatient procedure, allowing the patient to go home to same day.

Despite the many advantages of a minimally invasive hip replacement surgery, not all patients will qualify, depending on the severity of their damaged or diseased joint. Talk to your doctor immediately about your hip pain, in order to find out if you are a candidate for this procedure. Don’t wait, as doing so can cause further complications. Patients who are obese or have existing bone problems such as osteoporosis are not candidates, as excess weight places extreme stress on your joints. The doctor may suggest making healthy lifestyle changes before undergoing the procedure.  Despite its name, minimally invasive surgery is still a complex procedure.

To find out if you may be a candidate for minimally invasive hip replacement surgery, call Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs at (719) 623-1050 or request an appointment online.

Improving Your Peak Performance

Just like any muscle in the body, the human brain can be strong or weak. Therefore, if you want something to improve, you have to train for it to get better. Being able to power through injury, illness, and mental roadblocks can be difficult at times, but ultimately will improve your peak performance. The key is knowing how to do so, as our mind and body are connected.

Chronic pain, stress, mental illness (anxiety and depression), overeating, poor sleep, and sickness due to a weakened immune system, can all be signals from the body that something is out of balance. Your body responds to the way you think, feel, and act.

For example, when you are stressed, anxious, or upset, your body reacts in a way that might tell you that something isn’t right. This is especially true when it comes to your emotional health, or maybe even your overall health. One of the main tenets of psychology states, your mind is connected to your body. In other words, the nature of our mind reflects the state of the body.

Plato stated, “For the part can never be well unless the whole is well.” This ancient philosophy says that our body is made up of symbiotic parts, and if one part is compromised or not working at its optimal level, other factors will be affected, and can negatively impact someone’s overall health. Luckily, our bodies are remarkably resilient, and can heal themselves over time. Even so, there are things you can do to boost your mental and physical health, and to operate at your peak performance.

It is highly encouraged for people to be responsible and mindful of the daily care of their health and lifestyle, whether it be mentally, physically, professionally, or emotionally. To do so, Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence provides resources, and offers a variety of approaches and techniques to empower our patients on how to take responsibility for their overall well-being.

Some important factors include: 

Good Nutrition: Your brain cannot function properly if it does not receive the proper nutrients and fuel that it needs. So, boost your body’s immune system by consuming the nutrients and vitamins it needs to perform at the highest level possible. We can help you find the right dietary mix of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts, lean meats and fresh fish. 

Exercise: It is time to keep your body active. Not only does it keep you healthy, it helps with keeping your mind clear, and relieves stress and anxiety. Our orthopedic specialists and physical therapists can help you find the best exercise and activity regimen that will keep you on the climb towards your pinnacle of fitness.

Meditation: In order to perform at your best, you have to be in the best frame of mind. Meditation can take your mind to a whole new level, by feeling at peace with your body. As mentioned before, the body and mind are connected. Therefore, meditation removes the negativity and impurities that clog your mind. Keeping your mind clear will help you perform at your best, and may provide some perspective about the best path towards wellness.

To learn more about the best methods for striving for peak performance and overall wellness, call Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs at (719) 623-1050 or request an appointment online.

Rheumatoid Arthritis vs Osteoarthritis

There are many types of arthritis, but the most common two are Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and Osteoarthritis (OA). While both types of arthritis carry many similarities, they can be quite different when it comes to the onset of symptoms, causes, and the overall diagnoses.

Osteoarthritis affects an estimated 27 million people in the United States, while 1.3 million people suffer from Rheumatoid arthritis. Such a different ration shows why osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis. Typically caused by wear and tear, osteoarthritis tends to get worse as we get older. It tends to affect the lining in the cartilage of the joint, making movement more difficult than usual, leading to pain and stiffness.

Once the cartilage lining starts to roughen and thin out, the tendons and ligaments have to work harder. This can cause swelling and the formation of bony spurs, called osteophytes. The loss of cartilage also leads to friction where bone is rubbing on bone, altering the shape of the joint and forcing the bones out of their normal position. While OA typically shows up later in life, it can happen earlier, especially if certain injuries have occurred. 

While similarly affecting the joints, the causes and symptoms of RA are quite different than that of OA. Rheumatoid arthritis occurs when the body’s immune system targets affected joints, which leads to pain and swelling. The outer covering of the joint called the synovium is the first place that becomes affected. This can then lead to further swelling and a change in the joint’s shape, and may cause the bone and cartilage to break down. Unfortunately, the nature of RA as an immune system disorder means that people with rheumatoid arthritis can also develop problems with other tissues and organs in their body.

Common symptoms of osteoarthritis are joint pain and stiffness, typically on joints like the hip and knee. Pain from OA is typically worse in the morning or after periods of strenuous activity. Symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis may include fever, loss of energy, and extreme fatigue. Swelling in smaller joints are common.

Early diagnosis and treatment of both RA and OA is essential to prevent further complications. For osteoarthritis patients, treatment may include exercises to strengthen your muscles, physical therapy, and medication. In cases of severely damaged joints, a joint replacement surgery might be the last resort. People suffering from rheumatoid arthritis treatment may include the need for medication and physical therapy to reduce inflammation, and to prevent joint and organ damage. 

If you would like to find out more information about either rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis, call Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence at (719) 623-1050, or request an appointment online.

Symptoms of Trigger Finger

The complex anatomy of the hand consists of 27 bones, along with muscles, joints, tendons, nerves, and ligaments. If any of these structures become injured, pain and loss of function can put a damper on almost all activities. In other words, you rely on the use of your hands for almost everything you do on a daily basis. However, when you have constant pain and discomfort in your hands or wrists, these simple tasks become more difficult and uncomfortable. Some conditions, such as trigger finger, are not only painful, but also affect your appearance and function.

Any hand or wrist problem causing pain, swelling, discoloration, numbness or a tingling sensation, or abnormal shape, that persists for more than two or three days should be evaluated by your orthopedist to establish the cause, and allow treatment as early as possible. Early diagnosis and early treatment generally give the best results.

So, you notice that one day when making a fist, you try to straighten your fingers afterwards, when one catches when attempting to bring it back into a straight position, causing pain. After you go to a doctor to check it out, they diagnose you with a condition called trigger finger, caused by overuse.

Trigger finger, known medically as stenosing tenosynovitis, is a condition that causes pain, locking, popping or clicking of the fingers or thumb when the hand is opened or closed. Muscles in your forearm attach to tendons that run all the way down to the bones at the ends of your fingers. These muscles are what help you bend your fingers into a fist. 

The reason why we are able to open and close our hand is due to our tendons being pulled close to the bones of the fingers by pulleys. If these pulleys become too thick, stiff, tight or swollen, commonly due to inflammation, this causes the finger to “trigger” or get stuck when trying to straighten your fingers after being in a fist. Therefore, if the tendon cannot glide freely, trigger finger occurs.

Symptoms of trigger finger can occur differently for people, which is why it is not always easy to identify the cause. In its early stages, trigger finger can cause pain on the palm of your hand, or on the back side of a finger. Trigger finger causes inflammation, creating symptoms of stiffness and swelling. As the muscles and tendons in our fingers give us the ability to move, when someone is diagnosed with trigger finger, there can be a painful snapping sensation when opening and closing the hand. Often one of our fingers can get stuck in a certain position, making it painful and impossible to straighten or bend it.

To learn more about trigger finger and its symptoms, call Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs at (719) 623-1050 or request an appointment online.

What is Swan Neck?

The fingers are made up of bones called phalanges. The phalanges in each joint are separated by two joints called interphalangeal joints (IP joint). The two joints are the distal IP joint (DIP joint), meaning further away, and the proximal IP joint (PIP joint), meaning the middle or closer in. These IP joints of the fingers are like hinge joints, allowing us to have mobility with our hands, including straightening and bending. 

The tendons allow each of our finger joints to be able to flex and straighten completely. These are called extensor tendons. The extensor tendons come from the muscles that arise from the backside of the bones located in the forearm. These muscles travel toward the hand, where they eventually connect to the extensor tendons before crossing over the back of the wrist joint.

Then, the extensor tendons become what is called the extensor hood. The extensor hood becomes flat in order to cover the top of the finger. The extensor hood sends out branches of ligaments (tough bands of tissue) to connect the bones in the middle and end of the finger. When the extensor muscles contract, they tug on the extensor tendon, allowing the joints to work together, so that the finger can straighten and bend.

Finger position and movement of the hand occur from the balanced actions of many important structures, that work cohesively when everything is normal. Ligaments support the finger joints, muscles hold and give our fingers the ability to move, while tendons help control the motion of each finger. Any injury or condition can disturb the balance and inner workings of all these parts, altering functionality and the alignment and structure of the hand and fingers. The result may be a condition call swan neck.

What is Swan Neck?

Swan neck is a deformity, in simple terms, a crooked finger. The PIP joint (the joint in the middle of the main knuckle and DIP joint), includes the strongest ligament called the volar plate. These ligaments connect on the palm side of the joint. As the ligament tightens when the finger is straight, the PIP joint is protected from bending back too far, or hyperextending. Swan neck deformity occurs when the PIP joint in the finger becomes hyperextended and the DIP joint at the end of the finger is flexed, causing a crooked finger.

Swan neck symptoms include inflammation from injury, or conditions such as Rheumatoid arthritis (RA), causing pain and swelling of the PIP joint. This imbalance causes the finger to look like a swan’s neck, bent and abnormally crooked.

Your doctor will physically examine your finger, and sometimes order an X-ray to check your joints and look at the alignment, to fully diagnosis the problem. Treatment for swan neck deformity can be nonsurgical or surgical, depending upon the severity of the deformity. The approach your doctor chooses will also depend on whether the proximal IP joint is flexible or stiff.

 While the term deformity connotes a visual disturbance, remember that it can also affect mobility and day-to-day function, so getting treatment is important! To learn more about swan neck deformity and how to treat it, call the orthopedic surgeons at Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs at (719) 623-1050 or request an appointment online.

The 411 on Gout

Gout is a painful form of arthritis, characterized by inflammation that occurs when uric acid builds up and crystalizes in your joints. Symptoms include painful inflammation, tenderness and redness around the affected joint. Some people experience gout in different joints of the body, such as the knees or elbows, but it most commonly effects the big toe.

If you have high levels of uric acid in your blood, you may have a condition called hyperuricemia. Your liver normally metabolizes uric acid, and the kidneys get rid of it when you go to the bathroom. The levels of uric acid build up when not enough uric acid is eliminated, or too much uric acid is being produced. The purines in our food which increases the uric acid levels in our blood, are known to bring on gout attacks.

The uric acid buildup takes a crystalline form, and often finds a home in the joints. Since our joints need to stay lubricated and run very smoothly, a buildup of crystals will cause inflammation and pain, known as gout. When you are experiencing a gout attack, the affected joint will feel hot, swollen, turn red and will become very sensitive to the touch. The onset of pain during a gout attack will increase for 24-48 hours if left untreated.

Blood and urine tests are always recommended by your doctor in order to measure the level of uric acid in your blood. Taking in fluids dilutes the levels of uric acid, so drinking at least 64 ounces of water a day is ideal for breaking down uric acid levels, and as a result gout pain may decrease.

If you are experiencing gout flare-ups, it could be one of a few reasons and risk factors: males over 40 years old, family members with a history of gout, obesity, aspirin medications, a diet consisting of high purine foods or high-fructose drinks. Heavy drinking also contributes to elevated uric acid levels.

More often than not, gout has to do with our diet and what we are eating. It’s best to stay clear of certain foods when you have high uric acid, have had gout attacks in the past or family members that have had it as well. Certain medications can help control uric acid levels, and your orthopedic doctor can recommend the best treatment option for you.

While gout may seem like something that you can manage, it’s best to get it treated right away before inflammation and pain turn into more serious injury or disease. To learn more about gout and how to avoid it, call Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence in Colorado Springs at (719) 623-1050 or request an appointment online.

ACL Tears vs PCL Tears

Our knee is important, as it provides us with a foundation to stand on. The knee provides stability and mobility, and is vital to all types of movement, especially for athletes. If you ever had any sort of injury, especially a knee injury, you probably appreciate how your knees power you through various activities. To avoid knee injuries, it helps to understand how your knees work and what you can do to protect them.

The ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) and the PCL (posterior cruciate ligament) are the two major ligaments in the knee that work together to provide stability in the knee. They cross each other and form an ‘X’ which allows the knee to flex and extend without side to side movement. ACL and PCL tears are two of the most common and most serious knee injuries that happen to athletes. When you get an injury to the anterior cruciate ligaments or the posterior cruciate ligament, there are slightly different symptoms. 

What is an ACL Tear?

The ACL is one of the four main ligaments within the knee that connect the femur to the tibia. The knee is essentially a hinged joint that is held together by the medial collateral (MCL), lateral collateral (LCL), anterior cruciate (ACL) and posterior cruciate (PCL) ligaments.

The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is a tough band of tissue joining the thigh bone to the shin bone at the knee joint, providing much needed stability. It runs diagonally through the inside of the knee, and when there is too much stress on the ligaments, it can result in a sprain or worse, the ligaments can be stretched too far or snap, causing the ACL to tear. 

ACL Tear Symptoms:

  • Pain in the knee
  • Swelling, which builds up over twenty-four hours
  • Loss of complete range of motion of the knee
  • Tenderness to palpation of the joint line
  • Pain and inability to walk on the affected leg
  • Unstable knee

The most common treatment for a torn ACL is arthroscopic surgery and ACL reconstruction.

 What is a PCL Tear?

The posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) is located in the middle of the knee, next to the anterior cruciate ligament. While the ACL helps prevent your thigh bone (femur) from moving too far forward, the PCL helps prevent your shin bone (tibia) from moving too far backward. 

The PCL is lesser known because it is not injured as frequently as the ACL. However, injuries to the PCL should be taken seriously, as this ligament significantly affects the stability of the knee. Injuries to the PCL typically occur when the tibia is hit by an outside force while the leg is bent. One big difference between PCL and ACL tears is that most PCL tears are only partial tears, whereas the ACL usually completely tears.

PCL Tear Symptoms:

  • Pain in the knee
  • Immediate swelling of the knee
  • Difficulty or impossibility of walking on the affected leg
  • The knee feels like it is going to “give out”

To diagnose and treat tears to the ACL and PCL, your doctor will evaluate your injury by checking the severity of your knee instability. An MRI will most likely be done to get a closer look at the knee joint. If the diagnosis is an ACL or PCL tear, arthroscopic surgery can be done to repair the torn ligaments. Recovery can be lengthy for this injury, and will most likely require extensive rehabilitation, such as physical therapy.

The doctors at Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence will do their best to get you back to optimal function as quickly as possible. To learn more about ACL and PCL tears, and how we can help, call our office at (719) 623-1050 to request an appointment. You can also schedule an appointment online.

The Overlap Between an Orthopedic Specialist and a Rheumatologist

If you are one of the 100 million Americans in the United States suffering from joint pain, and the unpleasant effects associated with it, you know how difficult carrying out or completing everyday tasks can be. Getting healthcare is a privilege and a right, however, not everyone is fortunate enough to receive good healthcare. Good healthcare depends largely on the specialist you see, and for joint pain it can get tricky. Doing research, and talking to others can help you choose the right doctor.

In getting an accurate diagnosis, a visit to your primary care doctor is usually the first step. They can give you a basic diagnosis, and refer you to a specialist such as an orthopedist or rheumatologist for a closer look and second opinion. Both a rheumatologist and orthopedist treat joint pain as part of their specialty, whether the pain is chronic or acute.

The main difference and overlap between an orthopedist and a rheumatologist is that an orthopedist is a surgical specialist and a rheumatologist is a medical specialist. Usually, first, a rheumatologist will give you a diagnosis, and monitor your condition/progression following the use of medications and other non-surgical treatments. If symptoms continue to persist, the rheumatologist will often refer you to an orthopedic surgeon to see if you are a candidate for surgery, usually as a last resort, if no other treatments could alleviate the problem. 

Visit an orthopedist if you have experienced:

  • Joint or musculoskeletal pain following an injury
  • Hip or knee pain that gradually increases when bearing weight
  • Severe joint pain interfering with typical functioning
  • Moderate or advanced arthritis in the hips or knees
  • Previous unsuccessful treatment of joint pain
  • Need surgery – Joint Replacement

See a rheumatologist if you have experienced:

  • Pain involving multiple joints
  • New joint pain not associated with an injury
  • Joint or musculoskeletal pain associated with fever, fatigue, rash, morning stiffness or chest pain
  • Joint pain coinciding with back pain
  • Joint pain with psoriasis
  • Muscular pain with or without any other symptoms
  • Recurring headaches or muscle aches
  • Back pain with or without leg pain
  • Ongoing symptoms, such as unexplained fever, sweating or weight loss

At Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence, we understand how chronic pain, or pain in general can disrupt your life. At our practice, you will find a multi-disciplinary team of specialists that will diagnose and treat your joint pain. Whether your pain is caused by disease or an injury, our orthopaedic surgeons, podiatric surgeon, and physical therapists will provide the relief you need to get you back to doing the things you love. If further care is needed, we will refer you to the right specialist, to receive the best care possible.

To request an appointment with one of our orthopedic surgeons, call Colorado Center of Orthopaedic Excellence at (719) 623-1050. You can also request an appointment online today.