September 2015


The A-Z of Orthopedics

Orthopedics is the branch of medicine that deals with the rehabilitation of your ailing or wounded musculoskeletal system. This system encompasses your muscles, nerves, ligaments, bones, joints and tendons. That is markedly everything you need for mobility and proper functionality in your day to day life. Orthopedic surgeons treat patients of all ages, though at the very beginning their specialty was children. The scope of patients is from newborns with deformities like club foot to young ones who accidentally sprain or break bones. It is from athletes who strain their joints to the elderly who struggle with conditions such as osteoarthritis.

The Scope of Treatment

Orthopedic surgeons carry out a wide scope of treatment procedures and do not just perform surgery. Your first encounter with an orthopedic surgeon will involve an assessment of your current musculoskeletal health. This will involve tests such as blood tests and x-rays. Once diagnosis of your state is completed the orthopedic surgeon will decide on the best course of action to take. There are various directions this course could take. He or she could decide to take you through rehabilitative exercises augmented with drugs like anti-inflammatory antibiotics. The rehabilitative exercises would be done under a physiotherapist’s care.

The orthopedic surgeon could also deem it fit to treat you with surgery. This could be at times when there are injuries or conditions that are untreatable with just medication. These are the various forms of surgery that an orthopedic surgeon would perform:

Arthroplasty- This surgery is used to replace ailing joints or to resurface them. The surgery is applied to patients who have suffered dilapidating conditions like arthritis. The most common and effective forms of surgery are hip and knee replacements.

Arthroscopy- This is a minimally invasive surgery that is used to analyze and repair damaged joint tissue. It is referred to as the keyhole technique because of its micro invasive procedure using cameras and needle-like equipment.

Fusion Surgery- This type of surgery involves the welding of two parts of bone using bone grafts and metal rods so that it can heal into a solid bone. This surgery is done as a corrective procedure in order to bring about proper body function.

Osteotomy- This surgery involves the correction of a bony misalignment in order to preserve the health of an adjacent joint.

Orthopedic surgeons also tend to all things bone like broken and fractured limbs as well as repairing muscles, tendons and ligaments as mentioned above. These doctors also have specialties in their profession. In their 14 years of study ,they devote one optional year to specialize. There are those who specialize in hip replacement as well as those who will deal with athletic injuries only. There are those who specialize in treating children who are pediatric orthopedists as well as spinal orthopedics who deal with the treatment of spinal related conditions.

What is Sports Medicine?

Sports medicine is a healthcare discipline and field of specialization that focuses on several aspects of athletics at various levels. Physicians who specialize in sports medicine usually begin their medical training with primary care or family medicine residency programs before moving on to orthopedics and other special fellowships.

As an advanced and focused medical specialty, sports medicine involves various areas of concentration. The diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal injuries is a major focus, followed by the prevention of such injuries through kinesiology, exercise, nutrition, and behavioral management.

Not all sports medicine specialists are physicians. There are nurses, technicians, researchers, and trainers who study sports science and take practical assignments as part of their higher education goals.

Understanding Sports Science

Competitive sports is a very lucrative global industry. Athletics and exercise impact all communities around the world in different ways. When thinking about professional sports clubs such as the Real Madrid of Spain, it is important to remember that they extend far beyond football. In the specific case of Real Madrid, this is an important business based on professional football, basketball, youth sport academies, branding, and more. An organization such as Real Madrid is highly dependent on the efficient application of sports science for the purpose of achieving success in a very competitive field.

Sports science combines several medical and psychological principles and applies them to athletic practice with the goal of maximizing performance in a healthy manner. The sports scientists at Real Madrid include physicians, mental health practitioners, dieticians, massage therapists, trainers, and technicians who ensure that their professional athletes are always in condition to perform to the best of their abilities.

The Sports Medicine Career Path

There are various career paths for sports science hopefuls to become practitioners. Those who are interested in working as physicians must start at the college level with a scientific major, preferably one that is closely associated with the health sciences. Some universities have already implemented sports science to their curricula, which can be taken by those who wish to attend medical school later.

After medical school, sports medicine hopefuls enter an internship and residency program that will more than likely focus on primary care, family medicine or orthopedics. Fellowship or research programs might follow. Psychiatrists may also follow a similar career path, but they are more likely to enter graduate programs as well. Some enter chiropractic as well.

Technicians who wish to specialize in sports medicine without becoming physicians may do so as therapists, dieticians, nutritional counselors, psychologists, or trainers. Within these technical specialties, trainers are highly sought after by individual athletes who would like to receive one-on-one coaching. Top trainers who understand the intricacies of sports disciplines could encounter great earning potential; for example, a trainer who can increase the field shooting percentage of basketball players is considered a very valuable asset in a professional team.