4 Questions to Ask Orthopedic Shoulder Specialist
At Southern Sports Medicine Institute, consulting with an orthopedic Dr. Thomas Gautsch MD for shoulder pain provides numerous benefits. These specialists possess a deep understanding of musculoskeletal disorders, allowing them to diagnose and effectively treat various conditions affecting the shoulder accurately. For more information, contact us or book an appointment online. We have convenient locations in Gallatin TN, and Nashville, TN.
Table of Contents:
What happens during an orthopedic exam?
When to see an orthopedic doctor for shoulder pain?
What are the benefits of seeing an orthopedic doctor for shoulder pain?
What are the treatment options for shoulder pain?
An orthopedic exam is a thorough process conducted by an orthopedic specialist, who focuses on diagnosing and treating conditions related to bones and joints.
The exam begins with the patient providing their medical history, which is crucial for the specialist to understand any underlying health issues and previous injuries. This information aids in assessing the risk of musculoskeletal disorders and helps in determining the most appropriate diagnostic tests.
During the physical examination, the orthopedist examines the affected area, paying close attention to the skin and soft tissues surrounding it. They look for signs of swelling, visible lumps, bruising, or any abnormal positioning that might indicate the nature and severity of the injury.
Reflex tests might be conducted in cases where spinal injury or neuromuscular disease is suspected. These tests are crucial as they help the orthopedist understand how the body reacts reflexively, shedding light on potential underlying health issues.
The doctor also assesses the patient’s range of motion by asking them to perform various movements such as walking, bending, sitting, and standing, to evaluate the strength, flexibility, and functionality of the affected joint and surrounding muscles.
Orthopedic exams typically include diagnostic imaging tests like MRI scans, CT scans, or X-rays. These tests, which follow the medical history discussion and physical examination, provide detailed images of the internal structures of the affected area and are essential for making an accurate diagnosis.
You should consider visiting an orthopedic doctor at Southern Sports Medicine Institute for shoulder pain if you experience difficulty performing everyday activities. Additionally, if your shoulder pain restricts your ability to engage in physical activities like sports, or if it persists for more than 12 weeks, consulting an orthopedist is advisable.
If you notice a decreasing range of motion in your shoulder, or if you feel unstable while walking or standing, it suggests that the shoulder issue might be affecting your overall musculoskeletal health.
While primary care doctors often manage mild or acute shoulder problems initially, an orthopedic specialist’s consultation becomes necessary if the symptoms persist despite initial treatment or if the cause of the pain remains unclear.
Consulting with an orthopedic doctor for shoulder pain provides numerous benefits. These specialists possess a deep understanding of musculoskeletal disorders, allowing them to diagnose and effectively treat various conditions affecting the shoulder accurately.
They can identify the cause of the discomfort and develop a customized treatment plan tailored to the patient’s needs.
Orthopedic doctors utilize advanced imaging techniques that enable them to view the internal structures of the shoulder in detail. This high level of precision is crucial for accurate diagnosis and effective treatment planning.
Orthopedists are well-versed in a variety of treatment options, both surgical and non-surgical, ensuring a holistic approach to rehabilitation based on the patient’s specific condition and lifestyle.
The treatment options for shoulder pain depend on the diagnosis and severity of the symptoms. Orthopedists commonly prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs to manage pain and reduce inflammation. However, these medications should be used only briefly and under a physician’s guidance to avoid potential side effects.
Modifying activities is an essential part of managing shoulder pain. Patients are advised to limit movements that exacerbate the pain and avoid heavy lifting or certain sports activities until recovery is complete.
In cases where oral medications are insufficient, cortisone injections, which are steroids injected directly into the affected joint area, may be used to reduce inflammation and pain.
Cold and heat therapy may be recommended alongside other treatments to alleviate discomfort associated with shoulder pain. Cold therapy is effective in reducing swelling in acute injuries or inflamed areas, while heat therapy can soothe strained muscles.
In situations where conservative methods are ineffective, surgery may be considered. Surgical options range from minimally invasive procedures like arthroscopy to more extensive surgeries, depending on the underlying cause. Surgery is typically a last resort after non-surgical treatments have failed to significantly improve the condition or in severe cases.
The main goal is to provide personalized therapy that targets the root cause of the pain, considering the patient’s overall health, lifestyle, and personal preferences.
Orthopedic shoulder specialists are available at Southern Sports Medicine Institute. For more information, contact us or book an appointment online. We have convenient locations in Gallatin, TN, and Nashville, TN. We serve patients from Gallatin TN, Nashville TN, Old Hickory TN, Goodlettsville TN, Springfield TN, Red Boiling Springs TN, White House TN, Lebanon TN, Greenbrier TN, Portland TN, Hendersonville TN, Lafayette TN, Castalian Springs TN, Westmoreland TN, Hartsville TN, Cottontown TN, Bowling Green KY, Bethpage TN, Lavergne TN, Franklin TN, Hermitage TN, and Mount Juliet TN.
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