The average adult human body has 206 bones and a countless number of joints, ligaments and tendons. With so many moving parts, it is understandable that there would be a long list of problems and orthopedic conditions that may affect the human body. Orthopedic conditions most commonly treated by our surgeons include sports injuries, fractures and degenerative diseases.
Common orthopedic conditions
Arthritis literally means inflammation of a joint, where two or more bones meet. The inflammation can be caused by the cartilage in the joint being worn away. Arthritis causes pain, swelling, and limited movement of joints and the connective tissues.
When physical therapy and rehabilitation don't work for this orthopedic condition, a joint replacement may be the next step to return to a pain free active lifestyle.
Many orthopedic conditions are a result of degenerative diseases. Over time, or through wear and tear, tissues, cartilage, ligaments, tendons and bones deteriorate. Almost all mature adults suffer from some degree of arthritis and osteoporosis.
Orthopedic conditions are most often associated with fractures. A fracture is a partial or total break of a bone. This usually happens when there is more pressure on the bone than it can absorb. Breaks can happen from falls, trauma, or as a result of a direct blow or kick to the body.
Most fractures can be treated with a splint or a cast, pain medication and maybe some rehabilitation. More serious breaks can require surgery to insert rods or pins to help align the bones so they can heal properly.
A hip fracture is a break in the upper portion of the femur. The most common types of hip fractures are:
- Femoral neck fracture occurs just below the ball of the ball-and-socket hip joint.
- Intertrochanteric hip fracture occurs three to four inches from the hip joint.
Osteoporosis is a disease of the bones and occurs when you lose bone mass, make too little bone mass or both. According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, 44 million Americans have low bone density or osteoporosis. When your bones become thin or porous, they break very easily. In severe cases of osteoporosis, bumping into furniture or sneezing can cause broken bones.
Sports and overuse injuries
Some sports are more dangerous than others, but all sports have a risk of injury. Contact sports such as football might be more likely to have trauma-related injuries, while other sports run the risk of overuse or misuse of a body part. Sports injuries can range from sprains, strains and dislocations to fractures and torn ligaments and tendons. Common overuse injuries include tennis elbow, jumper's knee and Sever's disease (heel).