Is Orthopedic Surgery Necessary to Help Treat Arthritis?

Two orthopedic surgeons discussing a patient's case.

Is Orthopedic Surgery Necessary to Help Treat Arthritis?

Has arthritis put a damper on your fitness routine or physical activities? If you’ve tried every nonoperative treatment out there but without success, or the condition has already greatly diminished your quality of life, it’s time to talk to your sports medicine physician about surgery.

There are a number of surgical options available for addressing joint damage associated with arthritis. Which one your doctor will recommend will depend on the extent of the damage, location and type of arthritis you have, and your overall health, among other factors. Your sports medicine doctor will determine the suitable procedure for you after a thorough assessment of your condition.

Outlined below are the most common types of orthopedic surgery for arthritis:


This involves your doctor removing the diseased or damaged lining of the joint (synovium) to slow the progression of cartilage damage and address the symptoms. This procedure is typically recommended for early-stage inflammatory arthritis (rheumatoid arthritis).


This procedure involves your surgeon cutting and reshaping your bones. Your sports medicine physician may recommend an osteotomy if the damage is just confined to just one area of your joint, such as in the case of a knee osteotomy.

Joint Fusion Surgery

Your sports medicine physician may recommend this procedure if your symptoms are exacerbated by the movement of your joint. The goal of joint fusion surgery is to stop the movement and address the pain by creating a solid bone where a joint used to be.


Commonly known as joint replacement surgery, an arthroplasty is usually only considered for advanced arthritis, for which other surgical procedures are no longer effective. It involves removing part or all of a damaged joint and replacing it with artificial components.

If you’re considering getting a joint replacement but dread the large incisions and long recovery, the minimally invasive technique could be worth discussing with your doctor.

Your sports medicine doctor will thoroughly assess your overall health, activity level, and age, among other factors to determine your eligibility for a minimally invasive joint replacement procedure.    

Orthopedic Surgery in Gunnison and Crested Butte, CO

Don’t let arthritis stand in your way. Visit us here at gO Orthopedics. Our board-certified orthopedic surgeons— who are renowned for their expertise and their innovative and comprehensive approach to patient care— offer a broad range of cutting-edge nonsurgical treatments, all geared toward helping you live well with the condition. Should surgery be necessary for you, you can trust our providers to lead you to your desired outcome.

If you would like to learn more about the services we offer or to schedule an appointment with one of our orthopedic surgeons, call gO Orthopedics today at (970) 641-8899.

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