When should I see a doctor?
Most patients come to see me when they have pain and cannot do normal activities such as work, play sport and walk/run. If you have any concerns whatsoever about your body and an injury, then please make an appointment to see me.
Should I continue to play sport and endure the pain?
I always advise my patients to listen to their body and not to push through the pain barrier. If you have tried RICE (rest, ice, compression and elevation) and simple painkillers, and your pain continues, then I advise you to seek medical advice, as continuing to play sport may worsen the problem.
Will I need an X-ray or MRI scan?
Most patients will need some form of imaging. X-rays and CT scans are useful to rule out bony problems, whilst an MRI scan is excellent at looking at soft tissue (e.g. tendons, ligaments, cartilage) problems.
Do I really need surgery?
It depends how bad your problem is. If you have a broken bone which is extremely painful and disabling, then you may benefit from immediate surgery.
For less severe problems, then it may be worth trying non-surgical management initially such as painkillers and physiotherapy. If your symptoms do not improve or even worsen, then you may benefit from surgery.
Are there any dietary restrictions following surgery?
Usually not, although I warn patients to avoid traditional Chinese medicine and blood thinning medications 2 weeks before surgery, as these may increase risk of bleeding during and after the operation.
When can I drive and travel after surgery?
It depends on what kind of surgery you have had and which body part. For example, patients with a joint replacement of the hip and knee are advised not to travel long haul or drive for at least six weeks following surgery.
Dr Alan Cheung is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon specialising in Sports Injuries such as torn ligaments and tendons, and cartilage injury in the knee, hip and shoulder, Adult Joint Reconstruction including total and partial Knee Replacement and Total Hip Replacement for osteoarthritis, and Robotic Surgery (Makoplasty, Navio and Robodoc systems). He has also received extensive training in trauma (fixing broken bones) and musculoskeletal tumour (bone cancer) surgery.