Debunking Orthopaedic Myths

Dr. Alejandro Badia, Chief Medical Officer and his physician team at OrthoNOW™ Doral, South Florida’s only orthopaedic urgent care facility, recently collaborated to debunk the most commonly heard orthopaedic myths.

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The myths include: 

  1. Myth:  Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by using a computer.
    Truth:  “Pressure on the medial nerve causes carpal tunnel syndrome. This pressure can come from swelling or anything that makes the carpal tunnel smaller,” says Dr. Badia.  Things that can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome include hypothyroidism, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, pregnancy, obesity, wrist injuries and bone spurs and smoking because it can reduce blood flow to the medial nerve. Dr. Badia advises patients to see an orthopedic specialist if you are experiencing tingling, weakness, or pain in your fingers or hand that keeps coming back or that has not gone away after 2 weeks of home treatment.

  3. Myth:  Tennis or golfer’s elbow are due to those sporting activities.
    Truth:  “Tennis elbow” is a common term for a condition caused by overuse of arm, forearm, and hand muscles that result in elbow pain. “You don’t have to play tennis to get this, but the term came into use because it can be a significant problem for some tennis players,” says Badia  Another common term, “golfer’s elbow,” refers to the same process occurring on the inside of the elbow — what your doctor may call medical epicondylitis. Overuse injury can also affect the back or posterior part of the elbow.

  5. Myth:  Children with Pigeon Toes must wear those “orthopedic shoes.”
    Truth:  While some doctors advise bracing or casting if the feet are still severely curved when a child is 4 to 6 months old, some doctors feel that bracing helps pigeon toes or speeds up the development of the feet and legs toward a more true alignment.  “As children grown and gain muscle and bone strength, many believe spontaneous resolution is the most common outcome with little or no intervention,” says Dr. Gregorio Caban, a Foot & Ankle Orthopedic specialist at OrthoNOW™.

  7. Myth:  If you can move a body part, you do not have a fracture.
    Truth:  Osteoporosis, poor nutrition, participation in sports, advanced age, being postmenopausal, and decreased muscle mass increase your risk of a fracture.  Many times the patient can move the area where the fracture occurred.  Lack of movement does not mean that a fracture has not occurred.  “Evaluation must be obtained including a physical exam, a set of x-rays and a discussion on how the injury occurred,” says Dr. Badia.  In a limited number of cases, your doctor may order CT scans.

  9. Myth:  Cracking knuckles causes arthritis.
    Truth:  “Cracking joints” and “popping knuckles” are an interesting and poorly understood phenomenon. “There are many theories as to why joints crack or pop, but the exact cause is simply not known,” says Dr. Badia.  Knuckle “cracking” has not been shown to be harmful or beneficial. More specifically, knuckle cracking does not cause arthritis, however there have been anecdotal reports of cartilage injury due to this vigorous activity.

  11. Myth:  Both heat and ice should be used immediately following an injury.
    Truth:  “Ice should be used after an injury in order to reduce inflammation and inhibit pain.  Heat should be used prior to exercise to warm and stretch injured soft tissues, however, both ice and heat have similar effects in helping improve blood supply to the injured area by slightly different mechanisms,” suggests Dr. Tarik Husain, a board certified Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic surgeon at OrthoNOW™. 

If you feel that you may have any of these ailments, would like to know more about them, or want to make an appointment to see an orthopedic specialist, please contact OrthoNOW™ at 305-537-7272 or online at 


About OrthoNOW™:

OrthoNOW™ Orthopedic Urgent Care Center is a walk-in care clinic located in Doral, Florida with 15 specialists on staff that treat broken bones, sprains, torn ligaments and muscles, cuts, sports, and workers’ compensation injuries.  OrthoNOW™ has an in-house digital X-ray, MRI, ARP Wave, on-site operating rooms and provides follow up care, and rehabilitation.  OrthoNOW™ accepts most major insurance, has extended weekend hours and no appointment is necessary.


About Alejandro Badia, M.D , F.A.C.S.:
Alejandro Badia, MD, FACS is a hand and upper extremity surgeon at Badia Hand to Shoulder Center in Doral, Florida. Dr. Badia studied physiology at Cornell University and obtained his medical degree at NYU, where he also trained in orthopedics. A hand fellowship at Alleghany General Hospital in Pittsburgh was followed by an AO trauma fellowship in Freiburg, Germany.

He runs an active international hand fellowship, serves on the editorial board of two hand journals, and organizes a yearly Miami meeting for surgeons/therapists that is devoted to upper limb arthroscopy and arthroplasty. This international meeting is held at the world renowned Miami Anatomical Research Center (M.A.R.C.), the world’s largest surgical cadaveric training lab which Dr. Badia co-founded in 2005.

In 2008, he completed the Badia Hand to Shoulder Center, a fully integrated clinical facility for the upper limb also encompassing the Surgery Center at Doral, Integra Rehabilitation and an MRI imaging facility.  More recently, Dr. Badia inaugurated OrthoNOW, the first immediate orthopedic care center in south Florida which is staffed by surgeons from the International Orthopedic Group (IOG), a group of surgeons from lower extremity, upper limb and spine subspecialties who also treat elective orthopedic problems in international patients.

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