66% of those who suffer from chronic pain expect to live with that pain for the rest of their life. That doesn't have to be the case.
Did you herniate a disc while moving furniture around? Is the pain in your shoulder a torn rotator cuff or are you just sore from a solid workout? How about your knee? Has an old sports injury come back to remind you that you’re getting older every year? The next question running through your mind is whether you need to see a doctor. While you might be tempted to tough it out and hope the pain goes away, some injuries warrant immediate attention.
Don’t be surprised if your primary care doctor recommends seeing an orthopedic specialist. Trained to diagnose and treat injuries and diseases of the musculoskeletal system, these specialists can steer you on the right track to recovery -- whether your injury involves your bones and joints or your muscles, ligaments and tendons. Make sure you get prompt medical attention if you have the following symptoms:
- The injury causes severe pain, swelling, or numbness.
- You can't put any weight on the area.
- An old injury hurts or aches.
- An old injury swells.
- A joint doesn't feel normal or feels unstable.
If you’ve injured your back, remember that many back pain issues resolve themselves over time. That said, you should never ignore back pain that occurs after a fall or injury. See a doctor if your back pain does not improve with rest or if it involves numbness or tingling, severe pain, muscle weakness and trouble urinating. Putting off medical care can sometimes lead to permanent damage.
Remember, if your pain or symptoms gets worse, you should see an orthopedic specialist.
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