First times at anything can be nerve-racking, especially when visiting a new orthopedic doctor. The first orthopedic appointment typically involves an evaluation of your medical history. You can also expect physical tests and diagnostic examinations.
You don’t need to study for any of these tests, but it won’t hurt to prepare for the appointment, nonetheless. To set you at ease, here is a rundown of what you can expect during an orthopedic appointment.
Evaluation of Medical History
For orthopedic appointments, patients are typically asked to show up at least 15 minutes early. Arriving early helps complete the necessary paperwork and perform simple evaluations. After filling out some forms, your doctor will ask you about your medical history.
Knowing your medical history helps the doctor assess your risk for certain diseases. It also helps them determine which tests you should take and recommend medications and treatments suitable for you.
Your doctor can also compare your past medical problems with the issues you are currently experiencing. Access to your medical records gives your doctor information to make an accurate diagnosis. To guarantee the best possible treatment, it helps to bring a list of any medications you’re taking. Answer all questions honestly.
Your orthopedist may also recommend a diagnostic imaging test. These tests may be one or more of the following:
- CT scans
The imaging test usually happens after discussing your medical history and takes just a few minutes. A radiologist will capture an image of your affected body part. Your test results will then be handed off to your orthopedic doctor and provide them with some crucial information about your symptoms. It’s best to wear simple and comfortable clothes to the appointment, so the affected site is easily accessible.
In addition to imaging tests, your orthopedic doctor may order lab tests. These tests typically involve sampling body fluids and sending them to a lab for analysis.
Before meeting your orthopedic doctor, a medical assistant will discuss your current condition with you. You may have to provide additional details regarding your medical history and any problems you’re currently having. These details include any treatments you’ve had, whether by a doctor or self-administered.
Be sure to include any pertinent information if they have any questions about your condition. It’s also vital to tell them about any discomfort, pain, or symptoms you are experiencing. Be sure to answer inquiries honestly, so your doctor can form an accurate diagnosis. Being honest and open about your symptoms pushes your doctor’s diagnosis in the right direction.
Your orthopedist will be reviewing all the medical information you’ve provided since the start of your appointment. If they need more information, they might perform a physical examination to understand your problem better. A physical examination usually consists of simple exercises such as walking around, standing up, bending, and other simple tasks. Your doctor will also physically examine the affected area by checking for any pain, swelling, discoloration, or stiffness.
After a physical examination, your doctor will have a good talk with you about possible diagnoses and treatment options. Depending on your condition, they may suggest using durable medical equipment (DME). Simply put, DMEs are medical tools that you can use at home to help you go about your daily life. Orthopedic DMEs may include splints, casts, braces, canes, or wheelchairs.
Aside from DMEs, there are other treatment options that your doctor may recommend. For non-severe cases, non-surgical treatments like medication or injection may be sufficient. However, more severe conditions may require surgical procedures.
Whatever your available treatment options will be, your orthopedic doctor will guide you throughout the treatment and recovery process. You may also use this time to ask questions, so you know what to expect in the coming days.
Scheduling A Follow Up
An orthopedic appointment is not a one-time thing. Expect to have your follow-up session scheduled based on your doctor’s recommendation. The schedule of your consultations depends on your doctor’s diagnosis; they may ask you to visit biweekly, weekly, or monthly. The duration of your treatment will also depend on your diagnosis and type of treatment. You may also have physical therapy sessions during these visits.
Orthopedic Doctor In Jessup, Maryland
Knowing what happens during an orthopedic appointment can help you prepare and ease your nerves. Moreover, this helps in making your appointment session pass smoothly.
Here at the Orthopaedic Associates of Central Maryland, our board-certified orthopedic doctors will guarantee comfortable, quality care. They will be more than willing to answer any of your concerns and guide you through recovery. Expect to meet providers and staff that are fully supportive of your orthopedic journey.
To schedule an appointment, you may call our office today at (410) 644-1880. You can use our online request form to request a consultation with our healthcare providers.