An orthopedic injury or condition can greatly impact your mobility and quality of life. Whether you tore a tendon playing a contact sport or you are struggling with a degenerative disease like osteoarthritis, determining the best treatment option is an important decision. There are many orthopedic specialists that can offer their advice on a treatment plan for your condition, but not all may suggest the same options, which is why orthopedic second opinions are so important.
Medical technology and techniques are constantly changing and evolving, especially in orthopedic conditions and injuries. Joint preservation therapy and conservative treatments have come a long way in the last decade, changing the options available for repairing damaged joints, treating spine conditions and rehabilitating soft tissue injuries. While one orthopedic physician may still opt to use traditional treatments or surgery, another specialist may utilize cutting-edge therapies. Orthopedic second opinions give patients an opportunity to explore different treatment options to help them make an informed decision.
Orthopedic Second Opinions Before Surgery
One of the most crucial times to request a second opinion from another orthopedic specialist is when your physician recommends orthopedic surgery. Before you decide to undergo a joint repair, spine surgery or joint replacement surgery, you should talk to another orthopedic specialist who has reviewed your case. This does not mean you do not trust your physician or agree with their recommendation – many orthopedic surgeons will suggest you obtain a second opinion as a standard practice.
Depending on the orthopedic injury or condition, you may have other treatments available besides surgery. There are many conditions that now can be treated with injection therapy or orthobiologics, especially those that impact the joints. Joint preservation treatments have become more advanced, helping patients retain their natural joints longer, delaying or avoiding the need for replacement surgery.
Not only can orthopedic second opinions help give you alternatives to surgery, the input may also confirm the need for surgery. When surgery is the best option, a second orthopedic specialist can solidify this fact and help you feel better about the decision. However, even if both orthopedic surgeons agree on surgery as the preferred treatment option, they may have differing opinions on the best surgery techniques. It is always useful to listen to both options to weigh the pros and cons of each.
Choosing an Orthopedic Specialist for a 2nd Opinion
When your doctor recommends an invasive or complex orthopedic treatment, let them know you want to seek a second opinion. Reputable, experienced orthopedic specialists expect their patients to want to explore their medical options. When choosing an orthopedic specialist for your second opinion, find a highly respected medical facility that offers the recommended treatment or surgery, but preferably offers a multi-disciplinary approach. Choose your secondary orthopedic specialist carefully, checking their patient reviews, accreditations and reputation to ensure they are qualified to review your case.
At Silicone Valley Orthopaedics, we recommend our patients consider seeking second opinions before undergoing any major treatment or surgery. We also welcome patients from our peers that want us to review their case. Dr. Reynolds and Dr. Nic have established excellent reputations for their innovative approach to treating orthopedic injuries and conditions, whether they are repairing a serious sports injury for an athlete or performing joint preservation treatments for an elderly patient. When you have questions on your diagnosis or treatment recommendations by another orthopedic specialist or your primary physician, you can trust our team to carefully review your case and give an honest second opinion.
It is always a smart move to obtain orthopedic second opinions to ensure you are well-informed on all your treatment options. To request an orthopedic second opinion from our team at Silicone Valley Orthopaedics, contact our staff at either our Foster City or Fremont office.