During their lifetime, practically everyone experiences a musculoskeletal problem involving bones, joints, or connective tissues in their back, hip, shoulder, knee, ankle, or another joint. Whether it’s a fracture, a sports injury, or the result of a degenerative disease like arthritis, issues that fail to respond to conservative treatment – such as rest, icing, medication, physical therapy, or cortisone injections –require the specialized skills of an orthopedic doctor trained to provide effective treatment.
Advances in technology have made it possible for those suffering from painful musculoskeletal conditions to have access to quality orthopedic surgery that results in better outcomes, fewer complications, and a shorter recovery time. Nevertheless, finding an orthopedic doctor who can best treat your specific orthopedic issue is key to successful rehabilitation.
Asking your primary care physician, your physical therapist (if you have one), or family and friends who have undergone orthopedic treatment is a good start to your search. Here is what you need to know in order to find the right orthopedic surgeon:
- The orthopedic doctor’s credentials –Start with a short list of orthopedists and browse online databases or reputable medical associations to learn about their backgrounds. Focus your review on surgeons who are board-certified and/or have fellowship training in a specialty related to your specific condition. Consider their educational background and degrees. The more extensive their training, the more confident you can feel in their ability to tackle your orthopedic problem.
- The surgeon’s experience – Take note of how long the doctor has been practicing and their areas of expertise. For example, a specialist in general orthopedics, sports medicine, podiatry, and joint replacement surgery is not only highly qualified but is more likely to utilize the most advanced technologies and surgical approaches to deliver the highest quality of care. Ideally, the best orthopedic doctor is one who treats your specific condition and has an extensive history of successful surgical outcomes.
- The hospital or clinic where the surgeon practices – After you have narrowed down your list of orthopedic doctors, you should arrange a visit with each surgeon to discuss your situation and compare their opinions. This will give you insight into what the consensus is among experts and if any surgeon stands out due to their stellar service.
- Your comfort level with the orthopedist – You’ll know you have found the right doctor if they take the time to assess your medical history and needs, answer all your questions clearly, and fill you in on everything you need to know about your surgical and non-surgical options. Their compassionate and caring communication style will enable you to feel more confident that you are making the right, informed decision about your health.
Orthopedic Doctor in Walnut Creek, California
Laura Timmerman, M.D. is a specialized orthopedic surgeon who treats a variety of conditions, including those affecting the knee, shoulder, and elbow. Whether you are looking to get orthopedics surgery or more conservative therapies, our clinic provides comprehensive services to all the residents of Walnut Creek, California, and nearby areas.
If it’s the professional, experienced, and holistic orthopedic care you are looking for, Dr. Timmerman will not only meet but exceed your expectations. She has more than two decades of experience and is a highly specialized orthopedic provider who regularly serves the needs of Olympic athletes, varsity champions, and other athletes in Walnut Creek, California, and across the country. To receive a personalized consultation with Dr. Timmerman, please call us at (925) 952-4080 or request an appointment online.