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General Problems

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Singapore Orthopaedics

Singapore Orthopaedics

Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information you may require at (+65) 6664 8135

What is Orthopaedics? / The Orthopaedic Team @ Singapore Sports & Orthopaedic Clinic

What is orthopaedics?The word orthopaedic, sometimes spelled orthopedic, comes from two Greek words:

  • ortho meaning straight
  • paedia meaning children

Orthopaedics is the branch of medicine concerned with diseases, injuries, and conditions of the musculoskeletal system – relating to the body’s muscles and skeleton, and including the joints, ligaments, tendons, and nerves.

The proper title of this medical specialty is orthopaedic surgery, although orthopaedics is a generally accepted term.

Who treats orthopaedic conditions?Dr Kevin Yip is the resident Senior Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon here at the Singapore SPORTS and Orthopaedic Clinic. Several physicians from different medical specialties may be involved in the treatment at the same time. This multidisciplinary team approach is particularly important in managing the symptoms of an orthopaedic condition, especially as many symptoms are chronic and change in severity over time. Some of the more common medical professionals involved in the treatment of orthopaedic conditions may include the following:

  • Orthopaedic Surgeon
    The physician who specializes in orthopaedic surgery is called an orthopaedic surgeon, or sometimes, simply, an orthopaedist. Orthopaedists are educated in the workings of the musculoskeletal system, which includes (but is not limited to) diagnosing a condition or disorder, identifying and treating an injury, providing rehabilitation to an affected area or function, and establishing prevention protocol to inhibit further damage to a diseased area or component of the musculoskeletal system.The orthopaedist may have completed up to 14 years of formal education. After becoming licensed to practice medicine, the orthopaedic surgeon may become board-certified by passing both oral and written examinations given by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery. 

    Many orthopaedic surgeons choose to practice general orthopaedics, while others specialize in certain areas of the body (i.e., foot, hand, shoulder, spine, hip, or knee), or in a specialized area of orthopaedic care (i.e., sports medicine, trauma medicine). Some orthopaedists may specialize in several areas and may collaborate with other specialists, such as neurosurgeons or rheumatologists, in caring for patients.

  • Rheumatologist
    A rheumatologist is a physician who specializes in the treatment of arthritis and other rheumatic diseases that may affect joints, muscles, bones, skin, and other tissues. Most rheumatologists have a background in internal medicine or pediatrics and have received additional training in the field of rheumatology. Rheumatologists are specially trained to identify many types of rheumatic diseases in their earliest stages, including arthritis, many types of autoimmune diseases, musculoskeletal pain, disorders of the musculoskeletal system, and osteoporosis. In addition to four years of medical school and three years of specialized training in internal medicine or pediatrics, a rheumatologist has had an additional two or three years of specialized training in the field of rheumatology.
  • Physical Therapist
    Physical therapy is the health profession that focuses on the neuromuscular, musculoskeletal, and cardiopulmonary systems of the human body, as these systems relate to human motion and function.Physical therapists, or PTs, are very important members of the healthcare team. They evaluate and provide treatment for persons with health problems resulting from injury, disease, or overuse of muscles or tendons. 

    Physical therapists have an undergraduate degree in physical therapy, and many have a Master’s degree. In order to practice, all graduates must be licensed by their state by passing a national certification examination.

    Physical therapists may practice in a variety of settings, including the following:

    • hospitals
    • nursing homes
    • rehabilitation centers
    • home health agencies
    • schools
    • sports facilities
    • community health centers
    • private practice

    As related to orthopaedic conditions, physical therapists provide comprehensive training that includes, but is not limited to, the following:

    • functional mobility
    • balance and gait retraining
    • soft-tissue mobilization
    • body mechanics education
    • casting and splinting
    • wheelchair safety and management
    • neuromuscular re-education
    • exercise programming
    • family education and training
    • assistance with pain relief and management
    • instruction in safe ambulation
  • Occupational Therapist
    Occupational therapy is a healthcare profession that uses “occupation,” or purposeful activity, to help persons with physical, developmental, or emotional disabilities lead independent, productive, and satisfying lives. 

    An occupational therapist often coordinates the following in the care for the individual with a debilitating condition, such as an orthopaedic condition:

    • evaluating children and adults with developmental, neuromuscular problems in order to plan treatment activities that will help them grow mentally, socially, and physically
    • assisting children and adults in learning how to carry out daily tasks
    • conducting group or individual treatment to help children and adults in a mental health center learn to cope with daily activities
    • recommending changes in layout and design of the home or school to allow children and adults with injuries or disabilities greater access and mobility

    Occupational therapists work in a variety of different settings, including the following:

    • hospitals
    • rehabilitation centers
    • schools
    • home care agencies
    • private practice
    • government agencies
  • Physiatrist
    Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R), also known as physiatry, is a medical specialty that involves the process of restoring lost abilities for a person whose been disabled as a result of disease, disorder, or injury. Physiatry provides integrated, multidisciplinary care aimed at recovery for the whole person – by addressing the patient’s physical, psychological, medical, vocational, and social needs. The physician who specializes in physical medicine and rehabilitation is called a physiatrist.
  • Podiatrist
    A podiatrist specializes in foot care and is licensed to prescribe medication and perform surgery.
  • Nurses
    Nurses specialized in the care of orthopaedic conditions may assist your physician in providing care. In addition, these nurses will help you to understand your treatment plan and can answer many of your questions.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information you may require at (+65) 6664 8135

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