Monday, October 31, 2011

Innovations in Orthopedic Surgery

Orthopedic surgery is a broad area of medicine designed to treat musculoskeletal disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, and injuries. Surgeries may include joint replacement, resetting a fractured bone, and decompressions. With revolutionary advances in laser, ultrasound, and video technologies, orthopedic surgeons are able to diagnose and treat musculoskeletal conditions accurately and quickly with highly technical surgical procedures.
Internal Diagnosis
Problems of the joints are among the most common ailments treated by orthopedic surgeons.Arthroscopic surgery has made improving joint health a practical alternative to invasive joint replacement surgeries. This procedure uses a small incision through which a lens and lighting equipment are inserted. Then, fiber optics transfer the image of the inside of the joint onto a television screen. The doctor can then identify the exact source of the problem and apply appropriate treatment. This surgery can be performed in the ankle, knee, shoulder, or wrist. Arthroscopic surgery also allows for less downtime for patients and more targeted treatment.
Male medical senior doctor pointing at radiograph x-ray image
Outlook for Future Advances
A large part of the improvement of orthopedic surgery is the quality of artificial implants used to replace damaged joints. Research and testing is being conducted to create synthetic knee structures that behave exactly like joints in the human knee. This would make physical therapy much easier on patients after surgery because they would be allowed optimum mobility. Hip resurfacing has also become a subject of recent research because it allows more of the bone to be preserved, potentially avoiding total hip replacement. Computer-assisted hip resurfacing procedures are being developed to allow doctors the most accuracy when performing this surgery.
TOCA: The Orthopedic Clinic Association offers the latest techniques in orthopedic surgery to correct musculoskeletal disorders with the greatest possible comfort for the patient. We have several locations in Arizona for your orthopedic care. Learn more about us on our website or call (602) 277-6211

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Understanding MRIs

An MRI machine may be used after you have sustained an injury, or if you have an illness, to detect the extent and location of damaged tissue. These machines use a magnetic field to locate hydrogen atoms in the body. A computer then maps out an image that is readable by a technician or doctor.
This video explains how MRI machines work and what to expect when undergoing imaging. The procedure is painless, but it does require patients to stay completely still for 20-60 minutes. 
The Orthopedic Clinic Assocation offers in-house MRI testing as well as several other diagnostic tests. We have a skilled staff of physicians and medical professionals to provide the highest quality care. Learn more on our website or call (602) 277-6211.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

TOCA Tip's #1: Ankle Sprains

Ankle sprains are very common in athletes and occur when there is a traumatic injury to the ligaments surrounding the ankle joint. Ankle sprains occur when an abnormal force is applied to the foot. Commonly, this happens while running or jumping on an uneven surface. The foot rolls in (inversion) or out (eversion) and the ligaments are stretched or torn, depending on the severity. Occasionally a pop is heard at the time of the sprain, followed by pain and swelling of the ankle.

Initial treatment for ankle sprains consists of the R.I.C.E. treatment plan (Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation). Limit weight bearing with severe sprains early in treatment. Ice should be used for 20 minutes each hour, being careful not to put it directly on your skin as to avoid frostbite. Wrap the ankle in an ACE bandage or compression stocking to minimize swelling. Lace up ankle braces can give added support. Raise the ankle above the heart to minimize swelling. A NSAID can be helpful to reduce pain and inflammation. Early mobilization and physical therapy have been proven to decrease the time to return to sporting activities.

If you are unable to bear weight or have direct tenderness over the bone, seek medical treatment immediately to rule out a fracture.

- Dr. Anikar Chhabra, M.D., M.S.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

What is Sports Medicine

Treating sports injuries is an extensive process because many common injuries have the potential to cause chronic pain and lingering damage long after the initial problem has healed. Sports medicine is the combination of diagnostic testing, treatment (casting, bracing and prescribing medication), and physical therapy that athletes may need after sustaining an injury. Here are some of the common ailments that are encountered in sports medicine:
  • Sprains and strains: Overextending or twisting a muscle or tendon can lead to a sprain or strain. A sprain is more serious and may actually cause tissue to tear. The ACL is one of the most commonly injured ligaments because it is located in the knee and the knees are subject to heavy impact from your body weight. Reducing inflammation is the primary goal of initial treatment. Physical therapy is often utilized over an extended period to strengthen the injured areas and prevent future sports injuries.
Checking a knee
  • Head trauma: Contact sports have the threat of concussion when cranial impact is made. Thorough screening is needed when a head injury occurs because serious neurological damage could be incurred. Brain images may be taken with an MRI to determine the extent of damage. 
  • Back injuries: Rigorous activity may have a negative effect on the health of your spine. Over time, back pain and numbness may be experienced. X-rays can be taken to pinpoint areas that have been subject to damage. Physical therapy is often useful in treatment, realigning the structures of the spine and helping to alleviate pressure on nerves in the spinal cord.
If you have experienced a sports injury or noticed a decrease in your athletic performance, then contactTOCA in Phoenix. We specialize in orthopedic medicine and physical therapy. To schedule a consultation with one of our skilled physicians, visit our website or call us at (602) 277-6211