Orthopedic surgery is one of the most competitive medical specialties. These surgeons work to fix musculoskeletal issues, for instance like a torn ACL in an athlete or perform a hip replacement in an elderly patient with osteoarthritis. If you have a sports injury or are in need of an orthopedic surgeon, you will probably find yourself googling “best orthopedic surgeons”. But how do you actually know somebody is the best at what they do? Coming from a non-medical background it is incredibly difficult to work out whether somebody is truly the best. But new research gives us a sneak peek into the inner workings of those that are at the top of the orthopedics game.
A recent study by doctors in Canada looked at what makes a highly successful orthopedic surgeon. It was published in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, so is probably inaccessible to the average patient looking up the best orthopedic surgeons. The authors looked to those at the top of the profession, those with academic departmental chairs, journal editors, past or current presidents of major orthopedic associations. They defined these are the best as they had risen to the very top of the profession, and presumably, the best surgeons will have similar characteristics as these doctors (but may be much younger and not have reached such heights yet). This information should be accessible to the general public, so below is a list of characteristic identified by the Doctors that you should look out for.
However, the study does note that it did not take into account patient experience and statistics on surgeries. Therefore they did not account for some things in the survey. Other things to look out for in the best doctors could be:
In conclusion, meet prospective surgeons and look at their careers holistically to make a decision.