Dr. David Schroder on Whether Hip Resurfacing is a Viable Option for Women

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When your hip arthritis gets so bad that you need to discuss replacement options, there are really only two options to consider: total hip replacement and total hip resurfacing.

We can put a stem of metal into your femur (total hip replacement) or we can place a “cap” onto your femur, leaving your femoral neck intact (total hip resurfacing). On the pelvic, or cup, side, we do a similar process of placing a metal cup for each of these two choices.

After most current total hip resurfacing implants were approved about 6 years ago for use in the U.S., people jumped at the alternative to total hip replacement. As data gathered by national joint registries in Australia and elsewhere accumulated, however, it was noted that women did not do as well as men with hip resurfacing. Resurfaced hips failed more frequently in women than traditional hip replacement.

At first the difference between male and female outcomes was attributed to the fact that the smaller femoral necks in women could not support the “cap” on the femoral head and would fracture. A recent study of resurfacing out of Great Britain, however, challenges this notion. The investigators state that even women with larger femurs still fail at a rate of up to 5 times other conventional hip implants.

Additionally, hip resurfacing by its definition involves a metal head against a metal cup; a so called “metal-on-metal (MoM)” joint. These MoM joints have been under the microscope as well because of some patients having bone wear away and early failure. These types of MoM reactions by the body seem to be more prevalent in women.

Resurfacing proponents claimed improved range-of-motion, improved “feel”, even the ability to run after surgery. These claims were pushed forth by industry and some providers alike. The reality is that the outcomes are similar between resurfacing and replacement procedures. Only one subgroup has a slight edge with resurfacing when compared to replacement: muscular men aged 45-55.

In view of recent data and as a fellowship-trained joint replacement specialist (who trained with one of the top resurfacing surgeons worldwide), hip resurfacing is not an option I would offer the majority of my female patients. I think there are too many unanswered questions and we have an excellent track record with total hip replacement.

Dr. David T Schroder is a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon, fellowship trained in total joint replacement, with The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group.  He treats patients aged 11 years and up for most orthopaedic conditions, with the exception of spinal surgery.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Schroder, please call 210.281.9595.

Dr. Christian Balldin on How to Tell if Your Shoulder Pain is a Snapping Scapula

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Most people have aches and pains that come and go.  Pain behind the shoulder blade (the bone known as the scapula) is quite common, but can be debilitating.  There are a number of possible causes, so a careful physical examination and detailed information from each individual patient is vital for me to be able to make the correct diagnosis.  A crunching sensation and sometimes an audible noise (aka crepitus) is often present in a diagnosis of snapping scapula, also known as scapulothoracic bursitis with crepitus. 

With a diagnosis of snapping scapula, pain will be present in the back along the border of the shoulder blade closest to the spine and midline and will present upon movement of the arm.  When we move the arm from the side of the body to a position above our head, 2/3 of that motion comes from the shoulder but the other 1/3 actually comes from rotation of the shoulder blade.  Therefore, if you have inflammation in the scapulothoracic bursa (a bursa is a fluid filled sac normally present to decrease friction in an area of movement) that exists between the shoulder blade and the rib cage, it will cause pain and potentially the crunching sensation upon movement of the arm.  Sometimes, patients can also develop bone spurs in this area which can aggravate the situation. 

Most of the time, treatment for snapping scapula is non-surgical and I generally approach it using anti-inflammatory medication, injections into the bursa (which really helps and also can be of diagnostic value), and physical therapy.  Physical therapy is of the utmost importance in treating this condition as it focuses on your posture, making sure the kinetics for the shoulder is correct, and strengthening the muscles around this area. 

Other conditions, including neck pain radiating to the shoulder, shoulder pain radiating to the area, compressed peripheral nerves, and very rarely musculoskeletal tumors can mimic the symptoms of snapping scapula. A thorough physical examination and history of the complaint will rule the other conditions out. 

If conservative measures have been exhausted, a minimally invasive procedure using a small camera and instruments can be used to remove the inflamed tissue and any bone spurs.  This is called endoscopic scapulothoracic bursectomy and partial scapulectomy.  It can be done as an outpatient procedure in the vast majority of cases. Most people recover within a few weeks, but many feel better after only a few days.  Even after surgery, though, physical therapy is of the utmost importance to ensure the musculature around the shoulder and the posture is corrected so that the shoulder area remains healthy.

Dr. Christian Balldin is an orthopaedic surgeon, fellowship trained in sports medicine, with The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group.  He treats patients aged 3 years and up for all orthopaedic conditions with the exception of the spine.  To learn more about Dr. Balldin, visit his web page here.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Balldin, please call 210.281.9595.

Dr. Christian Balldin on Causes and Treatments of Hamstring Injuries

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Hamstring injuries are very common in sports and can involve any part along the entire length of the muscles and tendons from the hip to the knee.  The hamstring origin is found on the part of the pelvis called the ischial tuberosity, which is easily felt as it is the hard bone that we all sit on in our buttocks.  The majority of the muscles form a common tendon that attaches in this area.  The muscle bellies considered the hamstring muscles are found on the back of the thigh.  The hamstrings attach below the knee on the upper tibia and fibula – the two bones that make up the lower leg. 

Injuries can happen at any point along this course, but hamstring injuries involving the tendons attaching to the lower leg are quite rare.  When they do occur, these injuries usually involve the tendon from the biceps femoris muscle that attaches on the upper fibula. Injuries to this tendon are mostly associated with high energy injuries such as a knee dislocation or a significant ligament injury to the knee.  As you can imagine, there is often additional damage found alongside this type of injury.  Unfortunately, these types of injuries commonly need complex surgical repair and other reconstructive procedures.  The tendons that attach to the inside part of the lower leg are usually not injured significantly but can be involved with bursitis (when the fluid filled sac that envelops the tendons gets inflamed).  This can be treated with conservative means in the majority of cases.  

Injuries to the muscle bellies themselves are the most commonly seen hamstring injury.  These are often the easiest to recover from, but are also known for sticking around and being nagging injuries throughout an athlete’s season.  This has been the case with numerous professional athletes, including Miles Austin of the Dallas Cowboys.  These muscle belly injuries almost always heal without any need for an invasive procedure but they need time, something many athletes can be reluctant to allow for.  Not allowing enough time for this type of injury to heal can lead to chronic problems and reinjury.

Another location of injury to the hamstring complex is at its origin on the ischial tuberosity on the pelvis.  With explosive maneuvers, such as the beginning of a sprint or during the start of water skiing, this area sees a tremendous amount of stress.  The entire hamstring complex origin can pull off the ischial tuberosity with or without a piece of bone.  If it does so and retracts away from the ischial tuberosity it will most likely require surgical repair.  There are numerous studies to indicate that patients that have it repaired do better than those who do not.  One of the major nerves to the lower leg – the sciatic nerve – travels very close to the ischial tuberosity and can be involved in the scar that forms if these injuries are not treated surgically relatively soon after injury.  If this is the case it can be a significant source of ongoing pain.  Patients with chronic tears and sciatic nerve irritation also do well with repair and removal of the scar tissue in this area although the surgery is slightly more complex.

If you have acute injury with weakness and significant bruising or simply a nagging discomfort that is present in this area, I recommend you have it evaluated by a physician.  Hamstring injuries are often accompanied by a significant amount of bruising and pain.  At times the entire back of the thigh and groin can be black and blue due to the bleeding that occurs.  Consulting with a physician will help you understand the extent of your hamstring injury and your best options for treatment and rehabilitation.

Dr. Christian Balldin is an orthopaedic surgeon, fellowship trained in sports medicine, with The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group.  He treats patients aged 3 years and up for all orthopaedic conditions with the exception of the spine.  To learn more about Dr. Balldin, visit his web page here.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Balldin, call 210.281.9595.

Dr. David Schroder on the Popularity and Increasing Availability of Urgent Care Centers

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An issue getting some coverage in the press lately has been the increase in availability of and visits to urgent care centers, ranging from small “doc-in-a-box” clinics to larger facilities affiliated with hospitals or multi-location chains.

The increase in consumer demand for urgent care centers has been largely driven by the frustration of the average patient at having to spend hours waiting in an emergency room and pay a hefty fee to get treatment for lower level injuries and conditions, simply because the hospital is what is open when the patient is available to be seen (walk-ins, after hours and weekends).  Most people would much rather pay a small amount of cash to be seen in a reasonable amount of time and get going on their way.  From a convenience standpoint, I do believe urgent care centers are useful and that the average patient will be more efficiently granted medical care.

However, a major downside of urgent care centers, particularly from a subspecialty perspective, is that a patient may have diagnostic tests performed that may not be what the subspecialist (the next physician to provide treatment) needs to see.  As an orthopaedic surgeon, I often have specific requirements for how a radiographic test (x-ray, CT scan, MRI, etc) should be performed to be useful for diagnosis and preoperative planning.  For example, if an inadequate MRI is obtained prior to an orthopaedic consultation, I may not have the images that I need to properly diagnose and treat your complaint.  In this case, a replacement MRI would need to be ordered and it can be very difficult to justify the cost of repeat imaging to an insurance company or to a patient who is paying out of pocket. 

The growing trend of subspecialty practices providing an urgent care option is useful in combating this issue.  When a patient is seen in an urgent care environment that only deals with a specific subspecialty, it leads to a better directed effort in getting a proper patient workup performed.  Urgent care options like our OrthoNow Urgent Care Clinic offer more efficient delivery of care to orthopedic patients with acute injuries by providing a timely and appropriate workup.  They also lower costs by avoiding emergency fees and the price of repeating radiographic tests.

In an age with projected physician shortages and crowded emergency departments with high fixed costs, the spread of urgent care facilities is inevitable. We, as a community of healthcare providers, have to work together to ensure the proper flow of information between providers to allow for comprehensive and consistent medical care. For instance, even with access to electronic medical records, it can be difficult to allow for continuous documentation of care for a patient, as that patient will often arrive at a subspecialty physician’s office without documentation from the urgent care center. We have to ensure that trying to provide medical care as efficiently as possible does not interfere with providing medical care as comprehensively and accurately as possible.

Dr. David T Schroder is an orthopaedic surgeon, fellowship trained in total joint replacement, with The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group.  He treats patients aged 11 years and up for most orthopaedic conditions, with the exception of spinal surgery.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Schroder, please call 210.281.9595.


Dr. Christian Balldin on Recognizing Concussions in Athletes

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The awareness, evaluation and treatment of concussions are a hot topic lately. In the sports world especially, we are hearing about it more and more.  The NFL is attempting to limit the exposure of its players to violent hits and fining (or even suspending) the players that do deliver these types of hits.  Pee wee football coaches are trying to teach better tackling and not to lead with the helmet to not only protect the brain but also the spine to avoid catastrophic injuries such as spinal cord injury. 

However, concussions are not only present in football.  In almost every sport there is a chance for head injury and thus concussions.  The sport with the highest rate of concussions is actually women’s soccer. 

Concussions are common with the CDC estimating 1.6 – 3.8 million occurring annually.  In 90% of these, loss of consciousness does not occur.  The symptoms of concussions include:

  • Headache
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Dizziness and problems with balance
  • Fatigue
  • Blurred vision
  • Light sensitivity
  • Memory difficulties
The cumulative effects of concussions are really dangerous and not to be taken lightly.  Having repeated concussions throughout an athlete’s life can predispose them to Chronic Traumatic Brain Injury (CTBI).  It is the most common effect from repeated brain injury.  It can have serious vocational, persistent cognitive deficits and personal effects.

The so called “Second Impact Syndrome” (SIS) is when an athlete sustains a second concussion while still not recovered from the first.  During the recovery period of a concussion, even minor trauma, such as a trivial hit to the head, can cause significant increases in intracranial pressures and devastating consequences. 

The best way to manage concussions is to treat them appropriately when they do occur.  A coordinated effort between the athletic trainer, physicians involved, neuropsychologist, the athlete, the athlete’s family as well as the coach should be undertaken in order to have a safe return to play and/or to exertion.  A recent article in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery discussed the matter and made the following points:

  • Acute concussion symptoms are mostly self limited with resolution within two weeks
  • Athletes should rest physically and cognitively until symptoms have resolved at rest and with exertion
  • Neuropsychological testing should be used as part of overall evaluation when attempting to decide when an athlete is ready to return
  • A history of multiple concussions or a history of prolonged symptoms might necessitate retirement from collision/contact sports
  • Additional research still needed on long term consequences of concussions
The treatment of concussions is evolving, as it should, since we still do not fully understand the complex neural pathways that are affected.  Recognizing when a concussion has occurred is one of the most important steps.  This can only happen if we continue to educate those involved in sports on how to recognize the signs and symptoms of concussions.  A goal for the near future should be to have all young athletes involved in contact/collision sports baseline tested for concussion using objective computer programs.  Baseline readings taken prior to play would then be available to compare against if an incident occurs during the season.  This data would be part of the overall examination when attempting to treat and return an athlete to play.  This of course requires an organized effort on all parties involved.

Dr. Christian Balldin is an orthopaedic surgeon, fellowship trained in sports medicine, with The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group.  He treats patients aged 3 years and up for all orthopaedic conditions with the exception of the spine.  To learn more about Dr. Balldin, visit his web page here.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Balldin, call 210.281.9595.

To link to the study that Dr. Balldin is referencing, click here.

Dr. Christian Balldin on Hip Pain in the Active Adolescent and Adult

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There are numerous causes of hip pain in the active adolescent and adult population, including but not limited to:

  • A loose body, like a piece of cartilage, inside the hip joint itself.
  • Impingement of the femur bone and the hip socket.  This is when there is extra bone that forms on either or more often both locations in response to stress which can result in pain as well as decreased range of motion.
  • A tear of the labrum (the elastic tissue surrounding the socket of the hip joint) which is very commonly seen in combination of impingement.
  • Snapping of tendons over the hip joint capsule itself or occasionally more on the outside of the hip involving the iliotibial (IT) band
  • Greater trochanteric bursitis which is inflammation in an area on the outside of the hip that is normally present to decrease friction of the surrounding tissues
  • Strains of the muscles surrounding the hip joint, including the hip flexors and groin.
  • Pain actually generated in the lower back, which radiates to the hip area.

The vast majority of these conditions can be treated non-surgically using methods like rest, anti-inflammatory medication, occasionally local injections as well as physical therapy.

However, when you are dealing with a loose body floating around in the joint time can be of the essence.  The longer it is left unattended, the more damage it may do to the remaining healthy cartilage.  In these cases, the loose body should be removed sooner rather than later using a minimally invasive procedure called hip arthroscopy (“What is Arthroscopy?”). When appropriate, hip arthroscopy can also be used to repair tears of the labrum or to correct impingement by removing the excessive bone.

In cases where hip pain cannot be resolved using non-surgical techniques, hip arthroscopy offers a great, minimally invasive alternative to open hip surgery which allows for a smooth and speedy recovery in the majority of cases.

Dr. B. Christian Balldin is an orthopaedic surgeon, specializing in sports medicine, at The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group.  His fellowship training at The Steadman Clinic in Vail, CO included training in hip arthroscopy.  To learn more about Dr. Balldin, please visit his web page here. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Balldin, please call 210.281.9595.

Doctor Bell on News Radio 1200 WOAI

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A report showing the number of knee replacement operations performed in the United States in the past decade has doubled doesn’t surprise San Antonio knee surgeons, 1200 WOAI news reports.

Dr. Josh Bell, who performs knee replacement surgery at the San Antonio Orthopaedic Group, cites several factors for the boom in knee replacements, including the fact that the American people are becoming more obese.

“As the population gets larger, in terms of obesity, arthritis is certainly more of a concern,” he told 1200 WOAI news.

Dr. Bell says Americans over the age of fifty aren’t content to sit in a rocking chair any more. He says most middle aged and older Americans want to remain active, and they feel they are slowed down by knee pain.

4.5 million Americans currently have replacement knees in their bodies, or about one in twenty of all Americans over the age of fifty.

Dr. Bell says what bothers him is when people in their forties or even thirties come to him for knee replacements, under the belief that it is a quick way to relive knee pain.

He says knee replacements are made of metal and plastic, and they wear out, with the average life of an artificial knee being between 15 and 20 years.

“These are mechanical parts, they’re going to wear out over time, and they may need to end up getting another surgery later.”

He says advances in medical science over the past ten years have made the knee replacement operation easier and less expensive, and he points out that Medicare and private insurance covers knee replacements in most cases.

And he says, just like the growing demand for many pharmaceuticals, knee replacement companies are aggressively marketing directly to consumers.

“Recently, you’ll see there are companies that advertise directly to the public,” he said.

Dr. Bell and other knee replacement surgeons agree that knee replacements are among the best use of the nation’s health care dollars.

TSAOG Opens Saturday Sports Injury Walk-In Clinic

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(San Antonio, Texas) August 22, 2011 — It’s Saturday morning and you are realizing that the spectacular; football … or soccer…or softball game your child played the night before has resulted in an injury of some kind that needs attention, NOW. The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group is stepping up to the plate, using the combined assets of its OrthoNow Clinic (on-site emergency orthopaedic walk-in clinic) its ;unequalled Sports Medicine Physicians and the Group’s commitment to preventing youth sports injuries is once again offering the community a Saturday Sports Injury Walk-In Clinic for injured athletes.

The clinic will be held at The Orthopaedic Institute located at 400 Concord Plaza Dr., Suite #300, and will be open every Saturday morning from 8 a.m. until 10:00 a.m. starting August 27 th and running through the end of football season.

Dr. Brad Tolin, sports medicine surgeon with The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group said, “Our goal is to keep kids active for life. That’s why we are offering a safety net to parents, coaches and athletic trainers who know that sports injuries don’t happen M-F, 9–5 p.m.”

At the Sports Injury Clinic, injured athletes from all over south Texas can show up and be seen by Orthopaedic Sports Medicine specialists. As a part of the 24-physician San Antonio Orthopaedic Group, we offer complete orthopaedic care including Hand, Foot & Ankle, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation and Spine specialists to treat the wide variety of sports injuries that can occur.

There is on-site x-ray, MRI and CT imaging with Physical Therapy available to expedite diagnosis and treatment of the injured athlete “to get back to the game.”

For more information on the clinic or The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group, call (210) 804-5424 or visit their website at

CTQ Solutions Announces 2010/2011 Apex Quality Award Winners for Healthcare Excellence

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The 2010/2011 CTQ Apex Quality Award recognizes leading healthcare providers for excellence in patient satisfaction and delivery of care. This year’s winners include ambulatory surgery centers, hospitals, endoscopy centers, diagnostic imaging centers, physician practices and therapy & rehabilitation centers.

Branford, CT (PRWEB) August 22, 2011

CTQ is pleased to announce healthcare’s 2010/2011 APEX Quality Award winners. “The APEX Quality Award continues to gain momentum as one of healthcare’s more prestigious honors. Acknowledging the highest levels of service delivered to patients, based on indicators tied directly to care, APEX recognition further validates the magnitude of which each healthcare entity’s staff has excelled during the past 12 months,” notes CTQ President and Chief Executive Officer, Paul G Faraclas.

“The philosophy of CTQ’s closed-loop quality management emphasizes failure point mitigation during patient care,” says Faraclas. “Although communication between patients and care-givers do not guarantee better clinical/evaluative outcomes, CTQ believes that such communication may certainly contribute to earlier diagnoses, more informed care and help avoid undesirable events.    CTQ believes each APEX winner exhibits this behavior in their delivery of care.”

CTQ’s Vice President of Operations, Scott McHugh, adds “CTQ examines APEX evaluation criteria for each healthcare market closely. We fine-tune criteria to emphasize clinical interaction with patients, while determining which processes and measures matter most within the patient experience.” McHugh adds, “Key performance indicators most closely tied to direct interaction with clinical staff and processes are main drivers in APEX consideration. For surgical markets, patient feedback associated with nurses, surgeons, anesthesiologists and recovery staff interaction is paramount in the overall evaluation process.”

CTQ clients all use EdgeSurvey™ which drives high patient response rates by emphasizing the importance of introducing electronic surveying into their overall survey process. EdgeSurvey’s Daily Alerts, built-in Process Improvement module and Leadership Console are credited with initiating quality-improvement activities within these healthcare entities.

“Based on CTQ’s growth in 2010/2011, more healthcare entities are eligible to fall within the highest scoring tier. However with more peers comes increased competition,” emphasized McHugh. “There are only 18 CTQ clients receiving this award for the third consecutive year. Given the level of excellence that must be sustained, this speaks volumes about their performance.”

The complete list of Apex Quality Award recipients follows, (**denotes a repeat winner, *** denotes recognition for the third consecutive year) listed alphabetically: 
Ambulatory Surgery Centers: Brainerd Lakes Surgery Center** (Baxter, MN), Carroll County Eye Surgery Center (Westminster, MD), Castle Surgicenter, LLC (Aurora, IL), Chandana Surgery Center at Porter ** (Valparaiso, IN), CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Physicians Ambulatory Surgery Center New Braunfels*** (New Braunfels, TX), Constitution Eye Surgery Center East, LLC (Waterford, CT), Day Surgery Center (Winter Haven, FL), Dearborn Surgery Center*** (Dearborn, MI), Eye Surgery Center of Nashville, LLC*** (Nashville, TN), Glasgow Surgery Center*** (Newark, DE), Griffin Road Campus of LSDC** (Lakeland, FL), Indiana Surgery Center of Noblesville*** (Noblesville, IN), Indiana Surgery Center South (Indianapolis, IN), Iowa City Ambulatory Surgery Center (Iowa City, IA), Lakeland Surgical & Diagnostic Center*** (Lakeland, FL), Marysville Ohio Surgical Center*** (Marysville, OH), Michigan Surgical Center (East Lansing, MI), Midwest Physicians Surgery Center** ( Lees Summit, MO), Minnesota Valley Surgery Center** (Burnsville, MN), Ohio Surgery Center*** (Columbus, OH), Physicians’ Eye Surgery Center** (Charlestown, SC), Physicians Surgery Center at DePaul** (Bridgeton, MO), Ravine Way Surgery Center** (Glenview, IL), River Road Surgery Center (Salem, OR), Sedalia Surgery Center** (Sedalia, MO), Shoreline Surgical Center (Guilford, CT)**, Snowden River Surgery Center LLC (Ellicott City, MD), South Florida Surgery Center** (South Miami, FL), South Texas Surgical Center*** (Sequin, TX), Southern New Mexico Surgery Center*** ( Alamogordo, NM), St. Lucie Surgery Center*** (Port St. Lucie, FL), Sugar Land Surgery Center (Sugar Land, TX), Surgery Center at Hamilton*** (Hamilton, NJ), Surgery Center of Mount Dora** (Mount Dora, FL), Surgicare of Carlstadt (Carlstadt, NJ), Surgicare of Ridgewood (Ridgewood, NJ), Tallgrass Surgical Center, LLC (Topeka, KS), and UnaSource Surgery Center*** (Troy, MI)

Diagnostic Imaging: Buford Road Imaging** (Richmond, VA), Chesterfield Imaging (Midlothian, VA), The Medical Center at Elizabeth Place** (Dayton, OH), and University Pointe Imaging Center (West Chester, OH).

Endoscopy: Central Louisiana Surgical Hospital (Alexandria, LA), Franklin Endoscopy Center (Franklin, TN), Indianapolis Endoscopy Center** (Indianapolis, IN), Lebanon Endoscopy Center*** (Lebanon, TN), Seaford Endoscopy (Seaford, DE), Westside Endoscopy (Cincinnati, OH), and Wichita Falls Endoscopy Center*** (Wichita Falls, TX).

Physician Practice: Ohio ENT – Bethel Road (Columbus, OH), and The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group, LLP (San Antonio, TX).

Inpatient Care: Fairway Medical Surgical Hospital*** (Covington, LA), and Surgical Institute of Reading** (Wyomissing, PA).

Therapy & Rehabilitation: Burger Physical Therapy Roseville (Roseville, CA), and Rockford Orthopedic (Rockford, IL).

About CTQ Solutions, LLC: 
Since 2003, CTQ Solutions, LLC has provided healthcare facilities with the opportunity to optimize patient feedback by integrating electronic surveying with paper-based surveying. CTQ, which stands for Critical to Quality, offers integrated patient satisfaction surveying, physician satisfaction surveying and employee satisfaction surveying, along with benchmarking and quality improvement solutions that promote better care and service. CTQ is the clinical benchmarking arm of the Physician Hospitals of America and is a CMS-certified HCAHPS® vendor.


Wrist Injuries Double During Ice Storms

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When the weather gets icy, business gets better for Dr. Christian Woodbury.

He’s a hand and wrist specialist at the San Antonio Orthopaedic Group, the region’s leading orthopaedic practice, and he saw his patient load double last Friday, when the ice storm blew through the region.

“Any time there’s an ice of snow event, this happens,” Dr. Woodbury said.

He says it is a reflex action to put out your arm to break a fall, and in fact, that prevents damage to more sensitive parts of the head and torso in a fall. But he says the radium bone, the long bone, takes the brunt of a fall.

“If there is a fall, if there is pain, swelling, or any decreased range of motion, it’s a good idea to look into getting checked out,” he said.

Dr. Woodbury says just because there is not a lot of pain, that doesn’t mean there hasn’t been serious damage to the wrist.

“Surprisingly, we see people who have very little pain in their wrist, and there are also people who know immediately if their wrist doesn’t work right.”

He says ice is so hard, hitting it in a fall is like dropping from four feet in the air. He says usually, wrist injuries come from participation in extreme sports like inline skating and snowboarding, or traditional sports like soccer, football, and volleyball.’


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