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Rush Orthopedics — Tests and Treatments

The following tests and treatments are some of the most common tests and treatments offered by specialists in this area. These specialists offer many other advanced tests and treatments for a wide range of medical problems. Please call (888) 352-RUSH (7874) if you have questions about specific tests or treatments not listed here.

  • Ankle Replacement

    Ankle replacement is surgery to replace damaged bone and cartilage in the ankle. Orthopedic surgeons use artificial implants to replace the damaged bone.
  • Many conditions can be treated with arthroscopy instead of standard open surgery.
  • A bone scan is a test where radioactive material is injected to image bones in the body. It is used to diagnose bone conditions or to see whether treatment for bone cancer is working.
  • Carpal Tunnel Release

    Carpal tunnel release is a surgical procedure to treat carpal tunnel syndrome. This brief outpatient procedure increases the available space for the tendons and nerve within the carpal tunnel, relieving pressure and symptoms. It is often performed with minimally invasive techniques to minimize trauma and scarring.  
  • Cartilage Restoration

    Cartilage restoration is a treatment option to restore or replace damaged cartilage in the in the elbow, foot, ankle, hip, knee or shoulder before more serious joint damage occurs. Cartilage restoration techniques can be used for articular cartilage (which coats the ends of bones in joints) or meniscus cartilage (elastic, smooth and dense connective tissue that helps bones absorb shock).  
  • In cervical disc replacement surgery, surgeons remove a diseased cervical disc and replace it with an artificial disc.
  • Cortisone Injection

    Cortisone injection is a treatment used to provide pain relief for a variety of conditions such as arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome and tendonitis. Cortisone injections minimize inflammation, which decreases the body’s pain response. Cortisone injections use a synthetic (man-made) form of cortisone, a substance naturally produced by the body.
  • Discectomy

    Discectomy is surgery to remove all or part of a herniated disc (the cushions that separate the vertebrae in the spinal column). The procedure can be done on its own or as part of a larger surgery that also includes a laminectomy, foraminotomy or spinal fusion. Discectomy may be recommended if a person has severe or persistent symptoms, including pain, numbness and weakness.  
  • Hand Joint Replacement Surgery

    Hand joint replacement surgery is used to treat severe arthritis in the small joints of the hand. For the procedure, the damaged joint is replaced with either a silicone rubber implant or a piece of the patient’s own tissue taken from another part of the body. Joint replacement is often considered a good option for older, less active patients and for people with rheumatoid arthritis; it can relieve pain and improve finger range of motion and hand function.  
  • If nonoperative treatment fails, hip replacement is an option to relieve pain and restore function. At Rush, orthopedic surgeons have pioneered ways to perform the surgery that minimize patients’ pain after surgery and enable them to leave the hospital shortly after the procedure.
  • Ilizarov Technique

    Ilizarov technique is a type of external fixation that very gradually separates two halves of a bone so new bone can grow into the gap, lengthening or straightening the bone. It might be recommended for children with shortened or deformed limbs, complex or open bone fractures, limb-length discrepancies, malunions or nonunions, bow legs, short stature, infection, pediatric hip disorders, and many other conditions.  
  • Knee problems such as osteoarthritis (also called degenerative arthritis), rheumatoid arthritis and past injury can cause the bone and cartilage in the joint to wear away. If nonsurgical treatment has failed, knee replacement surgery may be an option for knee pain resulting from these conditions.
  • Kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty are minimally invasive surgical procedures. They are used to treat painful compression fractures of the thoracic spine (mid- and upper back) or lumbar spine (low back) caused by osteoporosis, cancer or trauma.
  • Limb Lengthening

    Limb lengthening is a treatment for young people with leg-length discrepancies caused by congenital abnormalities, diseases (including cancer) or major fractures. Sometimes, limb lengthening is done using the Ilizarov technique. Also offered at Rush is the Precice leg-lengthening system, which allows a patient to gradually extend the bone (tibia or femur) at home. All lengthening occurs inside the limb, which means no open wounds or external brace, less pain and a lower risk of infection. A weekly X-ray in the doctor’s office monitors the patient’s progress until the desired leg length is reached.  
  • Lumbar disc replacement surgery involves removing a diseased disc from the lower spine and replacing it with an artificial disc.
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

    Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a diagnostic procedure that uses a combination of large magnets, radiofrequencies and a computer to produce detailed images of organs and structures within the body.
  • Meniscectomy

    Meniscectomy is a surgical procedure to remove all or part of a torn meniscus (the spongy, c-shaped disc of cartilage that cushions the knee) that is too damaged to repair. For a partial meniscectomy, the surgeon will remove as little of the meniscus as possible. Often, orthopedic surgeons do the procedure using arthroscopic techniques, but sometimes open surgery is necessary.  
  • Meniscus Transplant

    Meniscus transplant is a surgical procedure in which a disc of donor cartilage (allograft) is implanted into the knee of a person who needs to have a damaged meniscus removed (meniscectomy). Meniscus transplant can be an alternative to knee joint replacement for younger, active patients who do not have knee arthritis. The goal is to relieve pain and improve quality of life.  
  • Mini TightRope Procedure

    Mini TightRope procedure corrects bunions and other foot deformities. It is a less invasive alternative to traditional bunionectomy, which requires the surgeon to break or cut the bone and reposition the big toe. With the Mini TightRope, the bone does not have to be cut, so patients can go home the same day, experience less postoperative pain and have a faster recovery.  
  • Osteotomy

    Osteotomy is a surgical procedure that involves cutting a bone to reshape it (shorten, lengthen or realign). It is used to correct deformities of the feet (bunions), hips, knees and legs, as well as to straighten bones that don’t heal properly after a fracture. Orthopedic surgeons may do an osteotomy to relieve pain caused by hip or knee arthritis, especially in younger patients to spare them from joint replacement.  
  • Physical Therapy

    Physical therapy can help people regain function, independence and quality of life after a stroke, injury or surgical procedure. It can also help people who are experiencing chronic pain or disability.
  • Shoulder Replacement

    Shoulder replacement is surgery to replace the shoulder joint with a new, artificial joint. Surgeons perform this procedure on patients whose shoulders have been damaged by injury, osteoarthritis or other problems.
  • Spinal Fusion

    Spinal fusion is a surgical procedure in which vertebrae are joined — or fused — together using metal, plastic or bone spacers, eliminating motion between the vertebrae. It is used to relieve pain and other symptoms for a variety of conditions, including tumors, spinal stenosis, fractures, spondylolisthesis, scoliosis and degenerative disc disease. Fusion can sometimes be done using smaller incisions.  
  • Tommy John Surgery

    Tommy John surgery is used to treat an ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) injury in the elbow. For the procedure, also known as ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction, the surgeon uses a tendon from the patient’s own forearm to replace the damaged UCL and stabilize the elbow joint. It is most often recommended for athletes who want to resume repetitive overhead or throwing motions, or if symptoms can’t be relieved with nonsurgical therapy.   
  • Trigger point injections are used to relieve painful trigger points, areas of muscle that have become tight and inflamed. Often, a tender knot or tight band can be felt at the spot.
  • Wrist Joint Replacement Surgery

    Wrist joint replacement surgery is an outpatient procedure in which some of the bones of the wrist are replaced with an artificial prosthesis. It restores the ability to bend the wrist, unlike wrist fusion surgery. Joint replacement may be a good option for people with painful wrist arthritis that does not respond to more conservative treatments.  
  • X-Ray

    X-ray imaging, which uses a type of radiation called electromagnetic waves, creates images of the inside of the body. It is most often used to look for broken bones but has other uses as well, such as diagnosing cancer. Although an X-ray emits radiation, the amount is relatively small.