Making Sense of Orthopedic Pain and Surgery in San Diego

This site was designed to be a comprehensive resource for patients in San Diego looking for the vanguard in orthopedic care. Although as a sports medicine expert I see patients of every kind – including pediatric patients – this site’s layout represents my specialties, which is why they are highlighted in its content and structure:

Click any of those links and you can read more about my holistic approach to working with pain and aiding in rehabilitation. And if you want to know where my training originated or the various positions I am grateful to hold, you can click here.

Still have questions about orthopedic pain and orthopedic surgery in San Diego? Please don’t hesitate to contact my offices here: we always take the time to answer your questions and address all of our patients’ understandable concerns.

The Quickest Fix for Knee Pain

A lot has been written about the things active people can do to prevent and mitigate knee pain, from rest and physical therapy to arthroscopic knee surgery. But the simplest solution involves no medical interventions whatsoever: studies show that weight loss can have a profound effect on chronic knee pain.

Researchers recently discovered that one of the particular pathways for arthritis knee pain – degeneration of the knee cartilage – can be slowed significantly by a reduction in body weight:

“This research is helpful by showing that weight loss is associated with less arthritis, but more importantly that weight loss can slow the rate of cartilage degeneration once arthritis has already developed,” says Dr. Steven Gross, an orthopedic surgeon at Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital in Barrington, Ill. “Patients who struggle with arthritis can potentially delay its progression by optimizing their weight as there is no turning back once the cartilage is lost to osteoarthritis.”

It is a disarmingly simple step, but of course weight loss remains a struggle for many people. And – alas – if the process of degeneration has advanced too far, or you have difficulty keeping the weight off, then knee surgery is the next step.

Want to learn more how to treat knee pain with orthopedic surgery in San Diego? Contact the AOSM offices today.

Never Too Late for Shoulder Surgery: An NBA Case Study

Pro basketball players face an unlikely combination of struggles: their exceptional height means they have longer limbs which experience greater torsional forces, and they spend half their athletic lives leaping and extending those limbs as far as they can go.

The result is often undue wear and tear on the back and shoulders.

So it is perhaps no surprise that Chicago Bulls legend Scottie Pippen recently posted this photo, alerting fans and friends that he has succumbed to the pain at long last, and begun taking active steps to restore comfort and mobility in his shoulder:

As the accompanying squib says, “It’s no surprise that the wear and tear of 1,386 games is beginning to take effect.”

Professional athletes aren’t the only people who report increasing shoulder pain as they age. At my orthopedic surgery practice here in San Diego, I see many hundreds of people who struggle with shoulder pain each year. When rest and rehab no longer do the trick, it may be time for orthopedic shoulder surgery.

The Facts on Tennis Elbow Surgery

Tennis elbow: it’s not just for tennis anymore. Many people who visit my San Diego orthopedic surgery practice with this diagnosis express some confusion over the name, especially if they don’t spend any time volleying balls on the court.

In fact the name “tennis elbow” can refer to a variety of ailments related to repetitive arm movements. Chopping, swinging, even certain musical instrument motions may result in the soreness and inflammation which define the disorder.

So what can be done for tennis elbow? This NIH page describes the more common approach:

If you have open surgery, your surgeon will make one cut (incision) over your injured tendon. The unhealthy part of the tendon is scraped away. The surgeon may repair the tendon using something called a suture anchor. Or, it may be stitched to other tendons. When the surgery is over, the cut is closed with stitches.

But many orthopedic specialists offer arthroscopic surgery as well:

The surgeon makes 1 or 2 small cuts, and inserts the scope. The scope is attached to a video monitor. This helps your surgeon see inside the elbow area. The surgeon scrapes away the unhealthy part of the tendon.

No matter what the cause and which procedure you require, my San Diego elbow surgery practice ensures you get the standard in diagnostic and surgical care. To learn more, feel free to call us here.

The Link Between Student Athletics and Orthopedic Surgery

Competitive athletes tend to suffer more injuries than their sedentary peers. As someone who specializes in orthopedic surgery for athletes in San Diego, I have witnessed firsthand just how often an active lifestyle can land patients in my office.

But until recently, no one had bothered to examine how often college athletes require orthopedic surgery, and whether there is any correlation with earlier injuries.

One study attempted to do just that, using multiple regression analysis to try and tease out the relationship between prior and future injuries within a population of NCAA athletes. Their conclusion?

Results from the multiple Cox regression model showed lower extremity surgery before college and type of sport were independent predictors for shoulder and knee surgery.

The strongest indicators for orthopedic surgery were participation in gymnastics, basketball and volleyball, whereas volleyball, gymnastics and baseball/softball were strongest indicators for shoulder surgery. The strongest indicators of knee surgery were basketball, football and volleyball, according to the researchers.

The takeaway is that we should be doing more to protect high school athletes as their bodies develop, and ought to consider systematizing a more rigorous approach to healing and rehab from injuries in young people.

If you’re any athlete in search of expert orthopedic care, please contact the San Diego sports medicine specialists at my practice today.