What Does an Orthopedic Doctor Do?

Dec 18, 2021

What Does an Orthopedic Doctor DoThere are so many types of doctors out there, and it can be difficult to find the right one for you. If you are dealing with any type of musculoskeletal condition, then orthopedic doctors might be what you are looking for. The field of orthopedics focuses on medical conditions, injuries, and diseases that affect the entire musculoskeletal system. This includes bones, joints, muscles, ligaments, tendons, and nerves. Common reasons why people visit orthopedic doctors include broken bones, chronic pain, arthritis, and musculoskeletal injuries. Here’s what you need to know about orthopedic doctors and how they can best help you.

What Orthopedic Doctors Do

If you are wondering, “what is an orthopedics doctor,” then perhaps the best way to answer your question is to review what these types of doctors do. They can provide a wide range of services for musculoskeletal conditions. Here are three types of treatment and prevention covered by orthopedic doctors:


Orthopedic doctors can provide nonsurgical treatment and care for musculoskeletal injuries. Nonsurgical approaches to your care might include applying hot and cold compresses to strained muscles, massage therapy for chronic back pain, and walking you through exercises to help you regain your strength and range of motion after an injury.

Minimally Invasive

Orthopedic doctors also provide minimally invasive treatment options like cortisone shots for pain in a specific part of the body. Your orthopedic doctor may recommend cortisone shots or steroid injections to help with muscle, nerve, and joint pain.


Orthopedic doctors are also known as orthopedic surgeons and have the capability to perform less conservative treatment approaches when necessary. Some operations performed by orthopedic doctors include hip and knee replacements, surgery for broken bones, and neck and spine surgery.

What Conditions Orthopedic Doctors Treat

If you have been experiencing pain and discomfort that doesn’t seem to go away, then an orthopedic doctor may be able to help. Orthopedic doctors treat a wide range of conditions, including joint pain, back pain, neck pain, arthritis, and muscle strains. A broken bone, also known as a bone fracture, may require immobilization with a cast or surgery to place screws and rods. Carpal tunnel syndrome, a wrist joint injury, may require a splint to help support the joint and exercises to relieve your pain and strengthen the area. Orthopedic doctors can also help with musculoskeletal conditions that impact the nerves, like a herniated disc causing a pinched nerve in your neck or lower back.

Specializations for Orthopedic Doctors

Orthopedic doctors can also specialize in certain areas of the body or in certain conditions. Here are examples of specializations for orthopedic doctors.


Orthopedic doctors may choose to specialize in treating conditions, injuries, and diseases of the spine. The spinal column consists of vertebrae and spinal discs stacked one on top of the other to provide stabilization for the whole body. The spinal column also houses and protects the central nervous system. Spine doctors can help with back and neck pain, nerve pain and nerve damage, and spinal injuries. They can also give you information on what to know about recovering from spinal surgery.


An orthopedic doctor may choose to specialize in specific joints, like a shoulder doctor or hip doctor. A shoulder doctor can be an orthopedic doctor who treats common shoulder joint injuries and conditions, like dislocations and rotator cuff injuries. Orthopedic doctors may also work with hip joint issues and injuries and perform hip replacement surgeries.

Car Accident Injuries

Orthopedic doctors may also choose to specialize in car accident injuries. A car accident injury doctor will have specialized knowledge in a wide range of musculoskeletal injuries caused by car accidents. Some common car accident injuries include whiplash, back pain, broken bones, muscle strains, and joint damage. Orthopedic doctors have the necessary training and skills to address these types of injuries with comprehensive treatment and care.

Sports Medicine

An orthopedic doctor may also choose to specialize in sports medicine. Sports medicine doctors can help with sports injuries, rehabilitation, and preventative care. Common conditions that orthopedic doctors can help with in sports medicine include muscle strains, joint injuries, bone fractures, and injuries that impact strength and mobility.

Visit AICA Orthopedics in Marietta to learn more about our team of orthopedic doctors and how they can help you!




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