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Blog Archive

I Have Arthritis in My Elbow: Can You Help? Jun 19th, 2024

Arthritis is a common medical problem for many Americans. In fact, more than 50 million Americans have doctor-diagnosed arthritis, and millions more may have arthritis that hasn’t yet been diagnosed. Arthritis can affect any joint in your body, including your elbows. Thomas E. Powell, MD, and the Powell Orthopedics and...

How Does Bone Realignment Work for a Fracture? May 13th, 2024

Worldwide, nearly 200 million fractures happen every year, and data show fracture rates are increasing. In part, that may be due to the aging population tending to be more prone to falls or the same population staying active longer. Whatever the reason, fractures can be serious injuries, and every fracture...

Do I Need a Joint Replacement or Is Physical Therapy My Answer? Apr 17th, 2024

Every year in the United States, well over a million joint replacement surgeries are performed, relieving painful symptoms and restoring mobility and function for people of all ages. There’s no doubt that joint replacement surgery is an appropriate choice for these patients — but for other people, physical therapy may...

Can a Partial Fracture Heal Without Medical Attention? Mar 2nd, 2024

Fractures are one of the most common orthopedic injuries, with roughly 180 million fractures happening every year worldwide.  Thomas E. Powell, MD, and the team at Powell Orthopedics and Sports Medicine provide comprehensive care for all sorts of fractures, helping patients of all ages heal and recover. In this post,...

5 Benefits of Arthroscopic Surgery Feb 8th, 2024

Joint pain and dysfunction are common problems for both women and men, and they tend to become more common with age and activity. Thanks to medical advances, we can now diagnose and treat many joint problems with joint arthroscopy or arthroscopic surgery. As a leading orthopedics surgeon in Vestavia Hills,...

Is Arthritis Reversible? Jan 16th, 2024

Arthritis is a group of more than 100 diseases that cause joint destruction, pain, and disability. Arthritis is chronic, and like other chronic diseases, it requires ongoing management to keep symptoms under control. If you have arthritis, you’re probably wondering if it can be reversed or cured. As a leading...

Do I Need Surgery for My Carpal Tunnel Syndrome? Dec 14th, 2023

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a common condition in which the median nerve in the wrist gets compressed by surrounding structures. Although mild to moderate cases of carpal tunnel syndrome typically can be treated using conservative, nonsurgical therapies, chronic or severe carpal tunnel syndrome may require surgery. At Powell Orthopedics and...

When to Worry About Nagging Wrist Pain Nov 15th, 2023

Wrist injuries are relatively common, in part because we use our wrists so frequently. They’re also common because the joint is so complex, meaning there are lots of parts that can be injured. While some types of mild wrist pain may go away with a little TLC, other types can...

Arthroscopic Surgery for a Meniscus Tear: What to Expect Oct 1st, 2023

Most of us think of our knees in terms of the bony prominence (kneecap) that becomes even more prominent when we’re sitting or squatting. But the knee joint is much more complex. It contains tendons, ligaments, nerves, and cartilage, including two wedge-shaped pieces of cartilage called menisci. Each meniscus protects...

Can a Foot Fracture Heal on Its Own? Sep 1st, 2023

Every year, millions of people suffer from broken bones, and about 10% of those fractures happen in the feet. Considering how much we use our feet and how much wear and tear they’re exposed to, that’s not too surprising. Foot fractures can range from relatively mild to severe and include symptoms like...

5 Tips to Prepare for Hip Replacement Surgery Aug 1st, 2023

Every year, more than 2 million hip replacement surgeries are performed in the United States, helping women and men restore joint function and regain mobility following severe arthritis. A leader in state-of-the-art hip replacement surgery, Thomas Powell, MD, offers these five tips to help patients at Powell Orthopedics and Sports Medicine get ready for their...

Physical Therapy Moves You Can Do At Home to Reduce Your Pain Jul 1st, 2023

Physical therapy offers plenty of benefits for many people suffering from chronic pain. Regular therapeutic exercise can help reduce inflammation, improve range of motion, and relieve stressful feelings that often accompany long-term pain. And, many exercises can be performed right in your own home. At Powell Orthopedics and Sports Medicine in Vestavia Hills, Alabama, Thomas...

Avascular Necrosis — A Lesser-Known Cause of Joint Pain Jun 1st, 2023

Avascular necrosis (AVN) is a serious medical problem that happens when a lack of blood supply causes bone cells to die. Also called osteonecrosis, avascular necrosis affects about 15,000 Americans every year.  While nearly any bone can be affected, AVN usually affects the ends of long bones that make up...

Could You Have a Fracture and Not Realize It? May 1st, 2023

Just the thought of breaking a bone can make many of us wince. That’s because most of us associate fractures with a lot of pain, swelling, and disability. But some fractures can occur more subtly, and their symptoms can be much more difficult to recognize. They still need prompt treatment,...

Stop Doing These Things If You Have Arthritis Apr 1st, 2023

Nearly 60 million American men and women have arthritis, including many with symptoms that limit their everyday activities. While there’s no cure for arthritis, there are medical treatments that can help you manage your symptoms, and there are simple steps you can take to protect your joints. Arthritis happens when the protective...

Daily Exercise: A Key Component of Your Arthritis Management Plan Mar 1st, 2023

Millions of Americans suffer from arthritis, including about 60 million people who’ve been medically diagnosed with the disease. While there are different types of arthritis, they all have one thing in common: They all cause joint pain and stiffness that can wind up limiting your mobility. When it comes to reducing symptoms and...

Recovering After a Total Knee Replacement: What to Expect Feb 8th, 2023

Nearly 800,000 knee replacement surgeries are performed each year in the United States, and that number is expected to grow as the population gets older. Total knee replacement surgery can be a great solution for women and men whose knees have given out due to arthritis or other diseases or injuries. Today’s knee replacement...

5 Benefits of Trigger Point Injections for Myofascial Pain Jan 1st, 2023

Most of us are familiar with muscle pain, either directly or indirectly. After a day of physical activity, it’s not unusual to feel some muscle pain or achiness as a result of strain or overexertion. What’s less familiar to many people is pain originating from the myofascial tissues. Myofascial tissue...

ACL Injury Prevention for Female Athletes: Stay Off the Sidelines! Dec 1st, 2022

Fall is here, and that means football season is well under way. It also means lots of news stories about players suffering from injuries to the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), a major ligament that supports the knee joint. ACL injuries are so common in football, it’s easy to think that...

4 Reasons You May Need to Consider a Joint Replacement Nov 1st, 2022

More than a million joint replacement surgeries are performed every year in the United States, helping women and men improve joint function and mobility. Still, even though joint surgery is proven and effective, it’s not always the best choice for joint problems. As a leading orthopedic surgeon in Vestavia Hills,...

Relax Your Trigger Points with Injections Oct 1st, 2022

About 20% of Americans suffer from chronic pain, including pain that comes from knotted muscle fibers called trigger points. In fact, in addition to focused pain that happens right around the muscle fibers, trigger points can cause referred pain, too — pain that you feel in other parts of your body. At Powell Orthopedics...

Here’s How To Prepare for Your Upcoming Orthopedic Surgery Sep 1st, 2022

Millions of orthopedic surgeries are performed each year in the United States, including well over 2 million hip and knee procedures. In fact, today’s orthopedic surgeries are often the best — and sometimes only — solution for chronic or acute pain in limbs and joints, restoring function and mobility so patients can...

Which Type of Arthritis Do I Have? Aug 1st, 2022

Nearly 60 million Americans suffer from doctor-diagnosed arthritis, a degenerative condition that can cause severe joint pain and disability. Another 32 million have arthritis symptoms but haven’t sought medical care yet.  When most of us think of arthritis, we think of osteoarthritis, the most common type of arthritis by far. But there are other...

5 Tips for Returning to Sports After Arthroscopic Rotator Cuff Repair Jul 1st, 2022

Rotator cuff injuries are common, especially among athletes who use their arms to throw or swing a racket or club. While some mild injuries can heal with therapy and other conservative options, more severe or complex tears can require surgery to repair damaged tissue and restore joint function. Made up of...

Ignoring a Stress (Fatigue) Fracture May Lead to a More Serious Fracture (and More Pain!) Jun 1st, 2022

Stress fractures are one of the most common types of sports injuries, and they can happen in nonathletes, too. Also called fatigue fractures, stress fractures are very tiny cracks in a bone, and unlike larger fractures that are usually caused by acute trauma, stress fractures typically occur as a result...

6 Tips for Preventing Tennis Elbow May 5th, 2022

If you think tennis elbow only affects athletes, guess again: Anyone can develop this painful condition. In fact, as many as 3% of Americans wind up with tennis elbow every year. Also called epicondylitis, tennis elbow happens when tendons in the joint are overworked and strained, typically from repetitive use....

When Sports-Related Back Pain Requires Medical Intervention Apr 20th, 2022

According to the latest national health statistics report, 8.6 million people in the United States sustain sports or exercise-related injuries in an average year, with overuse injuries like sprains and strains ranking as a top complaint.  Although sports-related back and spine injuries aren’t quite as common as sports-related joint (ankle,...

Causes of Frozen Shoulder Sep 29th, 2017

The shoulder is an extremely complex ball and socket joint, and happens to have the greatest range of motion of any joint in the body. However, this large range of motion can cause the shoulder to become unstable, leading to joint problems and the site of multiple injuries. If you have ever...

Hip Dislocation 101 Aug 18th, 2017

A dislocation is an injury to a joint in which the bones are forced out of their natural position by trauma. In a hip dislocation, the head of the thighbone (femur) is forced out of its socket (acetabulum) in the pelvis. Having a dislocated hip is often very painful, and...

Shin Splints: When to See Your Orthopedic Surgeon Aug 18th, 2017

The lower leg is made up of two bones, the fibula and the tibia. The tibia is the larger of the two bones, and often known as the shinbone. The small, thin bone that runs alongside the tibia from the knee to the ankle is the fibula. The tibia and fibula are...

Why Go to a Sports Medicine Specialist? Jul 28th, 2017

With the kind of physical demand placed on the body during playing sports, athletes tend to have an elevated risk for injury. Whether you experience an injury from an accident, competitive sports, or from a demanding training regimen, almost every athlete—amateur, or professional—will need medical assistance from a trained professional at...

The Importance of Exercise Conditioning Programs after Surgery Jun 23rd, 2017

When you have just undergone surgery, the last thing you probably want to do is to start exercising and conditioning the affected area. The simple fact is, however, that it is precisely what your body needs to help you heal. Exercise and activity are necessary to properly regain lost function...