Specialized Orthopedic Hospitals: Best for Senior Citizens

The Specialized Orthopedic Hospital: These hospitals treat only patients who need orthopedic care. They’re equipped with top of the line orthopedic equipment and a specially trained staff. Because they’re specialized, these hospitals are smaller than most general hospitals.

The format at a specialized hospital for orthopedics is designed to satisfy the patient:

• The entire staff becomes more proficient because of specialization.
• The surgeons perform the same type of surgeries on a daily basis.
• Physical therapists repeat the same basic rehabilitation routines.
• Nurses give patients more attention because of a smaller nurse to patient ratio.
• The staff works with the newest equipment available.
• The surgery times are seldom rescheduled because most emergencies go to general hospitals.
• The competition between specialized and general hospitals promotes a “desire to improve” mentality, for both types of hospitals.
• Because they concentrate in an explicit area, the needs of a specialized orthopedic hospital are specific. They’re budget does not include equipment or personnel outside the realm of orthopedics, so, chances are, they are financially sound.

Senior Citizens have Special Needs: The most populated age group in the United States is now senior citizens, and they continue to grow at an ever increasing pace. Thus, they need specialized orthopedic care because of age-related bodily changes, which increase orthopedic problems that are both subtle and obvious.
For example:

• As people age their bone mass becomes less dense, and it takes less of a blow to break a bone.
• Seniors lose the strength in their hands, and to unlock a door or take a lid off a jar becomes a challenge.
• Age and use stretches a person’s ligaments and their joints stiffen.
• The cartilage in their joints deteriorates and joints become arthritic.
• Osteoporosis affects both men and women.
• Age decreases the reaction time of muscles.

Those may seem like mere inconveniences or common maladies, but they all can lead to a fall. From the lack of regaining one’s balance, to the inability to break the force of a fall, any of them can result in a broken bone.

Seniors Respond Better Physically in a Specialized Orthopedic Hospital: Surgery is a shock to anyone’s body, regardless of age. But it’s more traumatic for a senior citizen. Even after so-called common surgeries, such as hip and knee replacements, seniors suffer more post-surgical heart attacks, blood clots, and infections than a younger person.

However, patient’s records from hospitals that specialize in orthopedic care report an average of less patient returns than general hospitals, on a per-surgery basis. Seniors also report being more satisfied at specialized orthopedic hospitals because of the extra attention they receive.