Mr Freedman appreciates that seeing a surgeon and the potential of perhaps needing surgery is anxiety-provoking for patients. With this is mind, our clinics are conducted in a professional and relaxed manner to earn your confidence, reassure you that you are in the hands of a well trained and compassionate surgeon and to put your mind at ease.
At your first appointment Mr Freedman will endeavour to diagnose the source of your orthopaedic problem, educate you regarding the nature of your condition and provide you with options or advice for the management of your orthopaedic problem.
Establishing a diagnosis usually comprises several elements:
i. Clinical History:
Mr Freedman will ask about your symptoms. Pertinent information will include history of any specific injuries, onset and severity of symptoms, any exacerbating or relieving factors, and contextual information such as your occupation, sporting interests and social pursuits. To augment information from your clinical history you may be also be asked you to complete a questionnaire or survey which contains standardised questions.
ii. Physical Examination:
It is generally necessary/suggested for your painful joint to be examined so that Mr Freedman can observe and in some cases test the behaviour of the joint.
To assist the examination please endeavour to bring or wear suitable clothing such as shorts, lycra pants or tracksuit so that you can be examined.
Try to avoid wearing restrictive clothing (such as very tight jeans) that would prohibit movement and examination of the joint. We do have modesty gowns available at the clinic if required. You do not need to be apprehensive about being examined. Mr Freedman is highly proficient at examining patients and while you may be asked if certain movements cause mild discomfort, the examination should not be painful. Your modesty will be carefully respected at all times. If you desire a chaperone you are most welcome to bring a support person, friend or family or a member of our staff can also assist.
Investigations, scans and X-rays are often useful to confirm the suspected diagnosis. They are not a replacement for a careful clinical history and examination. Plain “old-fashioned” x-rays of your sore joint are an excellent starting point and are usually obtained first. Even if “normal” they provide a usual baseline measurement of the status of your joint.
More sophisticated imaging such as CT and MRI are occasionally required. Ultrasound scans are usually not useful.
To allow your first consultation to be efficient and productive, we advise patients to have had a plain X-ray prior (usually within 6 months) of their consultation. More advanced imaging will be ordered at your first consultation if required. If you have not had a plain X-ray prior to your appointment please contact our office prior to your appointment and an X-ray slip will be sent out to you for you to have prior to the your consultation.
Mr Freedman will provide you with a clear management plan at your first consultation.
- In some circumstances it may be very apparent to Mr Freedman that you do not need surgery and will be given clear advice regarding appropriate non-operative treatments.
- Conversely, it may be clear that you have already exhausted all non-operative treatments and would benefit from surgery, and you will be offered an opportunity to discuss and potentially organise this.
- In other situations, Mr Freedman may decide that you do not need surgery just yet and that you may need a further period of conservative care or may need additional investigations and these will be organised for you. Regardless of the problem we aim to ensure that you leave your consultation with a clear plan as to the next step in the management of your orthopaedic problem.
Research: Mr Freedman participates in research studies which evaluate treatments and investigate ways to improve existing treatment and care. During your care you may be offered an opportunity to participate in research studies. This is completely voluntary and you will have the option too accept or decline participation.
Information for Family & Carers: You are very welcome to bring family members, a friend, or other carers to your consultation. We feel that it is often helpful to patient to have a support person in attendance, even if just to help remember answers to questions asked and are always happy to welcome family, friends or carers who to attend appointments with our patients.