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There are several reasons why you might go to a doctor’s office, and to handle the various potential disorders, there are plenty of specialists. And while keeping all of these doctors straight can be challenging, knowing which Louisiana Orthopedic Specialist to see and when can make a major difference in your treatment.

One common type of doctor that you may need to see is an orthopedic specialist. But what exactly does an orthopedic specialist do and how do you know when you need to see one?

What Is a Louisiana Orthopedic Specialist?

Orthopedic specialists typically treat disorders of the musculoskeletal system, including bones, joints, tendons, ligaments, and muscles. Occasionally, they may also treat issues that impact the nervous system when they’re directly related to the spine.

As far as their training goes, in addition to a 13-year standard medical education, orthopedist specialists may also choose to undergo an extra year or two of fellowship in a specific area. By doing so, they can focus their practice on one particular region of the musculoskeletal system, such as hands, feet, shoulders, or knees.

Some Louisiana orthopedic specialists also choose to deal only with pediatrics, sports medicine, or some other field. Of course, many are qualified to work in a variety of different treatment areas.

When You Should See an Orthopedic Specialist

The conditions that orthopedists typically treat include injuries, age-related concerns, birth defects, and a wide variety of conditions that could impact your musculoskeletal system. Even if you’re in fairly good health, your primary care doctor may refer you to an orthopedist if you experience ongoing pain in any of your muscles, joints, or bones as a result of accidents or overuse injuries.

The referrals process will depend on your health insurance provider. In some cases, you may not even need to see your general practitioner and can simply see a specialist on your own. Most often, though, insurance companies do require that you receive a written referral before seeing a Louisiana orthopedic specialist.

Even if your insurance company doesn’t require it, it’s wise to talk to your PCP first to see if a visit to a specialist is needed.

What to Expect When Visiting an Orthopedic Specialist

To be able to handle the musculoskeletal conditions that they treat, orthopedic specialists may utilize a number of different diagnostic and treatment tools. When you first visit an orthopedist, they usually begin by discussing your medical history and asking questions about your injury and illness and then move on to a physical examination. Depending on your situation, your doctor may also want to perform blood tests or X-rays.

Once they are able to diagnose your condition, the specialist will decide the course of treatment that would be best. While there are a number of different surgical techniques they could use, orthopedists typically try to treat most concerns through the use of exercise, medications, and/or other nonsurgical rehabilitative options.

If you are experiencing musculoskeletal pains and need to see a highly-trained and qualified Louisiana orthopedic specialist, contact our office today to schedule a consultation. 

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