Published Thursday, March 8th, 2018 at 15:20 pm
Top Orthopaedic Team At Mater Private Cork Leading The Way
TÁNAISTE Simon Coveney TD recently opened Mater Private Cork’s new high tech specialist Orthopaedic & Spine Centre at City Gate Plaza, Cork where 10 specialist surgeons and rheumatologists work together to provide one of the most advanced orthopaedic and bone health services in Ireland.
In this dedicated centre patients can visit their consultant, have their x-rays/bone density scans performed and get advice from specialist nurses and physiotherapists in just one visit.
Consultant Surgeon Mr Mahalingam explains that “our bones have many functions including providing structure, keeping us upright, anchoring muscles and very importantly they store calcium”.
Whilst we are conscientiously building strong and healthy bones during childhood we can also take steps during our later years to support bone health.
Why is bone health important? When you're young, your body grows new bone faster than it breaks down old bone, and your bone density increases. Most of us will have reached our peak bone strength at the end of our twenties and early thirties. After that the rate our bodies make new bone is slower than the rate we lose old bone. Factors that decide how healthy our bones are include the amount of calcium we take in our diet and physical activity.
People who have lower than recommended calcium intake and are physically inactive have a higher risk of conditions like osteoporosis whilst those who are overweight, have certain genetic traits or simply injure or overuse a joint can develop osteoarthritis. It is recommended that we should have about 1,000 milligrams a day of calcium in our diets or supplements and slightly higher if you are a woman over 50 years or a man over 70 years. Your family doctor can help you calculate how much you may need. Women need slightly more calcium earlier because their bones are less dense and bone loss increases significantly at menopause due to falling hormone levels.
Despite scientific endeavours and modern medicine as many as half of adults over 65 years, that’s one in two, have arthritis and two-thirds of people with arthritis are under the age of 65 years. For many there will come a time to consider the need for hip and knee replacement surgery as their condition impacts on their quality of life. It a decision that should involve discussion with your family doctor and indeed were necessary referral to an orthopaedic surgeon to learn more about the risks and benefits of surgery. If you are thinking about hip or knee replacement surgery you may want to consider if some of these issues are relative to you.
Have you joint Pain and stiffness? It may be time for a new joint if it hurts so much that it's hard to walk, climb stairs, get up from a chair, or do other activities. Is the pain also long-term, lasting at least 6 months or more? Does your joint condition affect your daily life? It's not just pain itself that matters, but the impact it has on your regular routine. Do your joint problems limit what you can do? Does it cause your mood to change? Is there significant bone damage. X-rays and other imaging tests can show if your arthritis or other conditions are taking a toll on your joints. Do other treatments not help? Medication, injections, or devices like walkers aren't giving you the relief you need.
Finally we all know about the lengthy waiting lists for hip and knee surgery so try to stay well, take your supplements and medication and exercise when possible. If you don’t have private health insurance perhaps you may want to fund the surgery yourself, many do. Discuss the option with your family doctor we at Mater Private Hospital Cork will be happy to take a call and provide a quote if necessary and certainly its worth visiting one of our consultants in our new centre to discuss your options.
Call the Orthopaedic and Spine Centre at Mater Private Cork on 021 6013200 or email Cork@materprivate.ie.