Frequently Asked Questions

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An orthopedic surgeon is a medical doctor who specializes in the treatment of the musculoskeletal system. This system includes bones, joints, muscles, ligaments, and tendons. At Orthopedic Specialists, our doctors are orthopedic surgeons who specialize in the spine, shoulder, elbow, hand, wrist, hip, knee, and ankle.

Physician assistants are licensed healthcare professionals who practice medicine under doctor supervision. As part of the doctor/P.A. team, P.A.s diagnose and treat illnesses and injuries. Their focus is patient care, which may include education and administrative activities. Physician assistants can also write prescriptions.

Total joint replacement means replacing both sides of the weight-bearing surfaces of the affected joint. In the knee, it means replacing both the thin cartilage surface on the lower joint surface, which is the tibia, and the upper joint surface, which is the femur. The joint surface under the kneecap is also replaced. This requires removing the thin cartilage surface and a thin surface of bone for replacement with an artificial implant. At Orthopedic Specialists, our surgeons specialize in reconstruction and replacement of the hip, knee, and shoulder joints.

Arthroscopic surgery is a modern method of performing surgery inside the joint through very small incisions. The incisions are usually about a quarter of an inch in length with two or three incisions per joint as necessary. A tiny video camera is attached to the end of a long, thin microscope, which is placed through the incision. Other long, thin, frequently modernized instruments are used to perform surgery inside the joints. Knees and shoulders most commonly benefit from arthroscopic surgery, but other joints such as the ankle, hip, and wrist may also be done.