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Five Signs You Should See a Joint Specialist

March 9th, 2020

Ideally, all of the parts of the human body would always function harmoniously. This harmony that allows you to walk, run, lift, bend, twist, and reach is not at the forefront of your mind when everything is working smoothly. However, when one body part is out of sync with the rest the whole system can feel that impact. When injury strikes and causes joint pain in the hip or knee, it throws the entire body off. This can cause further pain and even more injuries in different areas of the body.

If you think of your body and mind as machines that depend on one another, then you’ll understand how hip and knee pain can disrupt both physical wellbeing and mental clarity. Regular check ups with a joint specialist can keep these glitches in the body from occurring by ensuring everything is operating the way it was designed to. 

At Rothman Orthopaedic Institute, our team of trusted physicians and surgeons are prepared to serve as many patients with joint concerns as possible. 

Why is a Joint Specialist Important?

Within any joint in the body, there are ligaments, tendons, cartilage, bursae, and other key components that work together to prevent pain during movement. A condition or disease that impacts one of these components may cause  hip and knee pain and affect the entire area. The most common culprit is osteoarthritis, but there are several other common conditions that cause joint pain. A proper diagnosis and thorough treatment plan can alleviate symptoms, making the condition more manageable for the patient.

Below are five signs and symptoms that suggest you should see a joint specialist.

  1. You experience pain or swelling when moving a joint. If you are experiencing difficulty walking and the sensation of knee tightness, your knee may be swelling as a result of arthritis. These symptoms indicate that you should seek a professional evaluation from a doctor. 

  2. Your joint appears deformed. Certain types of arthritis can demonstrate increasing deformity of the limb, specifically knee bowing or becoming “knock-kneed.” If you are noticing increasing deformity and you are experiencing knee pain you should see a knee specialist.

  3. Your symptoms are getting worse over time. Patients typically wait a few days or weeks to see if their joints will improve on their own. If you notice the opposite happening—increased stiffness, expanding swelling, greater pain—make an appointment sooner rather than later to prevent serious injury.

  4. Conservative, at-home treatment methods have not improved your symptoms. Perhaps you have tried to care for your joint condition on your own. Implementing the R.I.C.E. method (rest, ice, compression, elevation) may decrease your symptoms significantly. If these at-home treatments do not help over time, ask a doctor about more advanced methods of alleviating your pain.

  5. Your joint pain has kept you from completing everyday activities. You should not have to sacrifice an activity you love because of an injury. After establishing a diagnosis, your joint doctor will offer you multiple options for treatment. For the specialists at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute, that is one of our priorities: finding the best individual treatment plan and getting patients back to enjoying life without discomfort.

Aside from the physical signs that you have a joint condition, consider your medical history and which diseases run in your family before seeing a specialist. For example, if one of your parents or grandparents has a genetic form of arthritis, you may want to inquire about that specific condition and possibly get checked for it. 

What Will Happen if I Don’t See a Joint Specialist?

The joint pain you’re dealing with is often because bones are rubbing together. The rubbing continues as you move your body, which means the bones are slowly wearing down. If your joint pain is not addressed, you may end up dealing with a much more serious injury down the line.

What Should I Look for in a Joint Specialist?

Whether patients are coming in for a first appointment, discussing a diagnosis, or preparing for joint replacement surgery, we know they often have questions and concerns. For this reason, our physicians and surgeons communicate clearly and respectfully to each and every patient. We always make sure our patients understand their condition and the details of care they receive from us. 

Rothman Orthopaedic Institute has always been committed to serving communities and providing exceptional orthopaedic care. Our offices have physicians that are trained in the following specialties:

To schedule an appointment with a joint specialist or for more information about our services, please visit us here .

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