Orthopedics is a medical specialty that focuses on the diagnosis, correction, prevention and treatment of patients with skeletal deformities - disorders of the bones, joints, muscles, ligaments, tendons, nerves and skin. These elements make up the musculoskeletal system.
Subacromial decompression (acromioplasty) is an operation on your shoulder. It's used to treat a condition called shoulder impingement. This is when the bones and tendons in your shoulder rub against each other when you raise your arm, causing pain. You can read more here. Referral information for GPs is here.
Exogen is a portable device used by patients at home. It is a non-invasive self- administered treatment, which delivers low-intensity pulsed ultrasound. Referral information for GPs is here.
A ganglion cyst is a fluid-filled swelling that usually develops near a joint or tendon. The cyst can range from the size of a pea to the size of a golf ball. Ganglions are harmless but can sometimes be painful. If they do not cause any pain or discomfort, they can be left alone and may disappear without treatment, although this can take a number of years. You can read more on the NHS website. Referral information for GPs is here.
Spinal fusion is a surgical procedure used to correct problems with the small bones in the spine (vertebrae). It is essentially a "welding" process. The basic idea is to fuse together two or more vertebrae so that they heal into a single, solid bone. Referral information for GPs is here.
The clinical commissioning group does not routinely commission Facet Joint Injections (FJI), epidurals, nerve root ablation or rhizolysis for spinal pain. There are three exceptions:
- Therapeutic epidurals are commissioned as part of the acute / sub acute back pain pathway which is suitable for patients with back pain up to 12 weeks duration
- Diagnostic / FJI nerve blocks will be commissioned as part of the pre-surgical assessment of patients being considered for surgery for multi level disease to aid localisation of surgery in the management of spinal pain with nerve root involvement
- Spinal injections are required to treat cancer related spinal pain
GPs can access further information and the referral form, here.
Low back pain is common and injections with corticosteroids are a frequently used treatment option. Referral information for GPs is here.
For guidance for the imaging and management of back pain please click here.