When people suffer from pain, they’d like to do everything to get it to end—and for many suffering from back and knee pain, orthopedic surgery is often a real and pressing concern. However, one does not commit to having back and knee surgeries without much thought, and it’s a must for Northern NJ patients to get a second opinion and know their non-surgical options before visiting an expert orthopedic doctor in Bergen County or nearby areas. In relation to this, Christina LaMontagne recently answered a letter from a reader in her recent article for Nerd Wallet:
All surgeries come with risks, and though knee surgeries are some of the most common orthopedic procedures in the country, you are completely justified in seeking a second opinion.
A recent study published in BMJ Quality and Safety found that diagnostic errors affect at least 1 out of every 20 U.S. adults. It stands to reason that if the diagnosis is wrong, the recommended treatment likely is too. Talking with another physician could save you considerable recovery time and potentially costly medical bills.
There are several non-surgical options that a skilled physician like those at MedWell Spine, OsteoArthritis & Neuropathy Center would suggest before visiting a northern NJ orthopedic doctor and going for the surgical option. First, doctors recommend a change to a person’s lifestyle and physical therapy. Knee and back pains can originate from weak muscles and conditions like obesity so exercise and a change in diet can do wonders. Of course, exercising while feeling body pains like these can be difficult, but expert physical therapists can recommend routines and facilities to help improve your body for the better.
Second, another option that doctors can recommend is spinal decompression therapy. This particular non-invasive procedure can treat back and neck pain, as well as sciatica and involves putting you in a harness that gently stretches your spine. This changes the shape of your spine and can relieve pressure on your spinal discs. With less pressure, these discs won’t pinch your nerves, not to mention that spinal fluid can be allowed to flow freely through the spine, healing any damage.
Finally, alternative treatments like chiropractic therapy have also been proven to work. Chiropractic treatments work similarly to spinal decompression, but with a chiropractor primarily doing the spinal adjustments. This can help relieve pain in the back by realigning the spine and relieving the pressure on nerves.
The options enumerated above are more affordable and less risky alternatives to surgery. However, they can’t solve everything; so if two or more doctors confirm your need for surgery, then be assured that it may be your only choice. Otherwise, you owe it to yourself to get to know your other options via a second—even a third opinion.
(Source: Ask Christina: Where Do I Go for a Second Opinion?, Nerd Wallet, September 30, 2014)