10 Types of Orthopedic Surgeries You Should Know About

Orthopedic Surgeries


Orthopedic surgeries have become increasingly prevalent as people strive for better mobility and an active lifestyle. Whether it’s due to sports injuries, degenerative conditions, or accidents, the most common orthopedic surgeries play a crucial role in restoring the musculoskeletal system.

In this blog, we’ll delve into orthopedic surgeries, exploring their types, procedures, and when to consult a doctor.

If you’re considering private orthopedic surgery in Alberta, it’s essential to be well-informed. Check out Timely Medical for comprehensive information and expert consultations to guide you through your orthopedic journey.

What Is Orthopaedic Surgery?

Orthopedic surgery encompasses both surgical and non-surgical interventions aimed at treating musculoskeletal issues. Research and Markets reported that approximately 22.3 million orthopedic surgery procedures were conducted globally in 2017. The field has evolved significantly, offering a range of solutions to address diverse orthopedic conditions.


Surgical interventions, encompassing the question ‘What are orthopedic surgeries,’ refer to procedures that physically alter the body’s structures. Each surgical category is tailored based on factors such as age, overall health, and the extent of the orthopedic condition.

These can include:

  • Joint Replacements: Involves replacing damaged joints with prosthetic components. It is commonly performed for hip, knee, and shoulder joints.
  • Ligament Repairs: Involves repairing or reconstructing the damaged ligament. Addresses issues with ligaments commonly performed for ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) injuries.
  • Spinal Surgeries: Tailored to alleviate pain and enhance spinal stability. Varied procedures for conditions like herniated discs, spinal stenosis, and deformities.

Non-surgical Interventions

Non-surgical interventions encompass therapies and treatments that don’t require incisions or invasive procedures. The non-surgical approach provides alternatives for individuals who may not be suitable candidates for surgery or those in the early stages of orthopedic issues. It emphasizes holistic care and improving quality of life through conservative measures.

These include:

Physical Therapy: Vital for both pre and post-surgical rehabilitation, which involves exercise programs designed to improve mobility, strength, and function.

Medications: Prescribed by a doctor based on the specific orthopedic condition and patient’s medical history, including pain management and anti-inflammatory drugs.

Lifestyle Modifications: Aimed at reducing strain on affected joints and promoting overall musculoskeletal health. Recommendations for changes in daily activities and habits.

Types of Orthopedic Surgeries

10 Types of Orthopaedic Surgeries

This comprehensive breakdown not only outlines the types of most common orthopedic procedures and orthopedic surgeries but also provides insights into the causes of these conditions and preventive measures to enhance overall musculoskeletal health.

1. ACL Reconstruction Surgery

One of the most common orthopedic surgeries, ACL reconstruction, addresses injuries to the anterior cruciate ligament in the knee.

This orthopedic procedure entails extracting a tendon from another part of your body and utilizing it to construct a new ACL for your knee.


  • Sports-related injuries, especially in activities that involve sudden stops or changes in direction.
  • Trauma, such as a direct blow to the knee.
  • Wear and tear over time, especially in individuals with an active lifestyle.


  • Proper warm-up and stretching before engaging in sports activities.
  • Strengthening exercises to support the knee joint.
  • Using protective gear, such as knee braces, during sports.

2. Knee Replacement Surgery

For those suffering from severe knee arthritis or joint damage, knee replacement surgery offers a new lease on life. Modern techniques ensure reduced recovery times and enhanced joint functionality.


  • Osteoarthritis is a degenerative condition that wears down the knee joint over time.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder affecting the joints.
  • Traumatic injuries causing significant damage to the knee.


  • Maintaining a healthy weight reduces stress on the knee joints.
  • Regular exercise to strengthen the muscles supporting the knee.
  • Proper management of arthritis through medication and lifestyle adjustments.

3. Shoulder Replacement Surgery

Similar to knee replacement, shoulder replacement surgery is often recommended for individuals with debilitating shoulder arthritis or injuries. It restores the range of motion and reduces pain.


  • Degenerative conditions like osteoarthritis.
  • Rotator cuff injuries.
  • Fractures or severe trauma to the shoulder.


  • Proper shoulder conditioning exercises to enhance strength and flexibility.
  • Avoiding overuse of the shoulder joint, especially in repetitive motions.
  • Seeking timely medical attention for shoulder injuries.

4. Hip Replacement Surgery

Hip replacement surgery is a transformative procedure for individuals with hip arthritis or fractures. It involves replacing the damaged hip joint with a prosthetic one, allowing for improved mobility.

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons reports that over 300,000 total hip replacements are conducted annually in the United States.


  • Osteoarthritis affecting the hip joint.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Hip fractures due to accidents or falls.


  • Regular low-impact exercises to maintain hip joint health.
  • Adequate intake of calcium and vitamin D for bone health.
  • Fall prevention strategies, especially in older adults.

5. Knee Arthroscopy

A minimally invasive procedure, knee arthroscopy involves using a tiny camera to diagnose and treat knee issues. It’s commonly employed for meniscus tears and ligament injuries.


  • Meniscus tears due to sudden twisting or impact.
  • Ligament injuries, such as ACL tears.
  • Cartilage damage in the knee joint.


  • Strengthening exercises to support knee stability.
  • Proper techniques during sports to avoid unnecessary stress on the knee.
  • Timely management of minor knee injuries to prevent complications.

6. Shoulder Arthroscopy

This procedure utilizes a small camera to inspect and repair problems within the shoulder joint. It’s effective for issues like rotator cuff tears and recurrent dislocations.


  • Rotator cuff injuries from overuse or traumatic events.
  • Recurrent dislocations of the shoulder joint.
  • Inflammation or damage to the shoulder cartilage.


  • Shoulder-strengthening exercises to prevent injuries.
  • Proper techniques during activities that involve the shoulder.
  • Early management of shoulder pain or discomfort.

7. Ankle Ligaments Reconstruction or Repair

Ankle ligament surgeries are essential for those with recurrent ankle sprains or instability. Reconstruction or repair restores stability and prevents future injuries.


  • Frequent ankle sprains leading to ligament damage.
  • Traumatic injuries causing ligament tears.
  • Chronic instability due to weak ligaments.


  • Ankle-strengthening exercises to improve stability.
  • Proper footwear to support the ankle.
  • Balance and proprioception training to prevent sprains.

8. Spinal Surgeries

From herniated discs to spinal stenosis, orthopedic surgeons perform various spinal surgeries to alleviate pain and improve the quality of life for patients.


  • Degenerative conditions like disc herniation.
  • Spinal stenosis causing nerve compression.
  • Traumatic injuries to the spine.


  • Maintaining a healthy weight to reduce strain on the spine.
  • Regular exercise to strengthen the core muscles.
  • Proper body mechanics to prevent spine-related injuries.

9. Joint Fusion

Joint fusion, or arthrodesis, is a surgical procedure that fuses two bones, typically in cases of severe arthritis. This eliminates motion in the joint, relieving pain.


  • Severe arthritis causing pain and joint deformity.
  • Failed joint replacement surgery.
  • Joint infections leading to irreversible damage.


  • Early management of arthritis symptoms to prevent progression.
  • Timely intervention for joint infections.
  • Careful consideration of alternatives before joint replacement surgery.

10. Trigger Finger

A condition where a finger gets stuck in a bent position, trigger finger surgery involves releasing the affected tendon, restoring normal movement.


  • Inflammation of the tendon sheath in the finger.
  • Repetitive gripping or grasping motions.
  • Certain medical conditions like diabetes.


  • Avoiding repetitive hand movements that strain the fingers.
  • Using ergonomic tools and techniques.
  • Managing underlying health conditions that contribute to trigger finger.
Consult Orthopedic Doctors

When should you consult a doctor?

Persistent Joint Pain: If you experience continuous discomfort or joint pain that doesn’t alleviate with over-the-counter medications or home remedies.

Limited Mobility: When you notice a significant reduction in your ability to move a joint or perform daily activities due to stiffness or pain.

Injuries that Don’t Respond to Conservative Treatments: In cases where injuries, whether from accidents or repetitive strain, show no improvement with rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE) or other non-invasive approaches.

Concerns about Orthopedic Conditions: If you have concerns about existing orthopedic conditions, such as arthritis, and notice a worsening of symptoms.

Preventive Check-ups: Regular consultations are advisable, especially for individuals engaged in sports or those with a history of orthopedic issues, to detect and address potential problems early.

Schedule Your Consultation with Timely Medical Alternatives

Orthopedic issues shouldn’t be ignored. If you’re experiencing discomfort or reduced mobility, schedule a consultation with a qualified orthopedic surgeon. Medical alternatives, such as those provided by Timely Medical, can significantly improve your quality of life. Don’t delay – take the first step toward a healthier, more active you.


In conclusion, most common orthopedic surgeries have revolutionized how we address musculoskeletal issues. Whether through advanced surgical techniques or non-invasive therapies, orthopedic interventions offer hope and healing. If you’re grappling with joint pain or mobility issues, consulting a qualified orthopedic specialist is the first step toward a healthier, more active life.


Q1: What is the most difficult surgery for an orthopedic issue?

A1: The complexity of orthopedic surgeries makes it challenging to pinpoint the single most difficult procedure, as it often depends on various factors such as the specific case, the patient’s condition, and the surgeon’s expertise. Each surgery presents its unique set of challenges, and what might be considered the most difficult can vary among orthopedic specialists.

Q2: How long is the recovery period for knee replacement surgery?

A2: The recovery period varies but typically ranges from a few weeks to a few months. Physical therapy plays a crucial role in the rehabilitation process.

Q3: Is there a specific age limit for orthopedic surgeries?

A3: Orthopedic surgeries aren’t strictly age-dependent. The decision hinges on the individual’s health, the severity of the issue, and potential benefits. While age matters, it’s not the sole factor. Surgeons assess factors like bone density and medical history to tailor treatments.

About The Author

Christian Baker

Christian was born in a Group Health hospital in Washington state and holds both American & Canadian citizenship. Christian is the head of our diagnostic & ambulatory surgery department for our Canadian…

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