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New providers and services at OrthoIllinois!!!

It is a very exciting time at OrthoIllinois with the addition of two new specialties and multiple new physicians! On August 1, 2016, we will welcome Dr. Todd Alexander and Dr. Richard Broderick, both experienced neurosurgeons that will be merging their individual practices into OrthoIllinois and launching our expansion beyond musculoskeletal services. Neurosurgery is a specialty dedicated to the treatment of disorders of the brain (e.g. tumors, aneurysm), spine, and peripheral nerves.   Our new Neurosurgery division will be headquartered at the Riverside location and will collaborate with Dr. Braaksma, making our spine program even more robust.   Dr. Alexander is a Rockford native and more

What should I expect during my Functional Capacity Evaluation

A Functional Capacity Evaluation is a test to determine the ability of the evaluated person to function in a variety of circumstances, most often employment, in an objective manner. These tests, which are often performed by a licensed physical therapist, are requested by physicians, insurances carriers or attorneys to assist in closure of a worker’s compensation case or if there is a request for determination of disability benefits. While every Functional Capacity Evaluation is different depending on the person being tested and what information is being requested, tests typically are performed over a 2-4 hour period and may consist of more

Highlights of the 2016 Spring Work Comp Event at Forest Hills Country Club

Wednesday May 25, 2016 the Occupational Health Center hosted a dinner presentation for local employers, case managers, safety consultants, legal representatives, and insurance carriers. The event was well attended and we have received very positive feedback regarding the venue and discussions. Dinner and complimentary beverages were provided at no charge. The audience was given the opportunity to pre-submit questions prior to the evening as well as ask the speakers questions throughout the evening. Dr. Robin Borchardt, MD was the moderator and explained how he works together with the other specialists to provide exceptional care for your injured employees. Some more

Jan Nowicki had outpatient hip replacement at the surgery center

Jan Nowicki was a good candidate for outpatient hip replacement at the OrthoIllinois Surgery Center. She had a hip replacement done with Dr. Antonacci near the end of April, 2016. We had a chance to sit down with her and talk about her experience and what motivated Jan to pursue hip replacement. I retired from teaching three years ago. A year later, I started experiencing a lot of hip pain, which kept me from being active. It continually worsened to the point where I couldn’t sit, stand, or sleep without a great deal of discomfort. My primary care doctor referred me to an more

How should I modify if I am injured or think I am injured

People ask all the time “If it hurts, should I push through it.” You have to get in tune with your body. Is it sore because you’re exerting yourself in ways you haven’t pushed before? Or is it pain, and are there other things accompanying that pain like swelling, numbness, discoloration, etc? I do think working with a trainer to learn proper technique is very important. Trainers can safely get you the results you want. Side note: avoid trainers who push you too hard and try to use a cookie-cutter approach to fitness training. Trainers can help you know the difference between more

When is it too early for sport specialization?

Before 12 years old. Maybe. A recent article in The American Journal of Sports Medicine tackles (pun intended) an often-asked question in recent years: when is it too early for sport specialization? What does single-sport specialization mean exactly? The article is not saying that it’s potentially bad for an adolescent athlete to play baseball during the season and then not play another sport until the following baseball season. It is, however, saying that it’s potentially harmful for an adolescent athlete to play baseball during the season in school, and then play club baseball, and then do specialized training for baseball during the offseason. Sports more

ADHD Medication, Kids, and Bone Health

At the 2016 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), Dr. Jessica Rivera presented her research on the effects of ADHD medications on the bone density of children and adolescents. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that about 6.4 million children age 4-17–or approximately 11% of children in the US–have been diagnosed with ADHD. That’s an alarming number and a 28% increase from diagnoses reported in 2007. For more information on ADHD itself, offers an excellent overview of the data. Given that ADHD affects such a large percentage of children, it makes Dr. Rivera’s findings all that more

Samantha’s Story

Samantha Drammann shares Her Victory Story about recovery from Hip Pain. After having a strange pain in my hip for six months, an MRI revealed that I had a labral tear. As a collegiate swimmer, I was worried about how this injury would affect my season. I opted to have surgery in August of 2015, and by January of 2016, I was back in the pool training hard! My recovery from hip arthroscopy went smoothly thanks to Dr. Van Thiel! As with any surgery, the first week of recovery was tough. Most of the difficulty I faced during recovery months was mental. It’s more

Guidelines for choosing an orthopedic surgeon

Learn how to choose the Best Orthopedic Surgeon for your employee’s work comp injury. Why does it matter who you choose? Because you want the best outcomes and quickest recovery so that your workers can return to work well equipped to perform their job functions. With that in mind, here's a quick list of things to consider when researching a physician. Post op protocols: Does the surgeon provide complete post op protocols and educational information? It is very important to follow specific instructions vital to recovery and returning to work following surgery. Experience: How long has the surgeon been performing this procedure? How more

Electrodiagnostic testing in work-related Injuries

Electrodiagnostic testing (EMG and nerve conduction studies) can play in important role in the correct diagnosis of work-related injuries. Pain, numbness, or weakness are common presenting symptoms in the injured worker. A timely and accurate diagnosis for the cause of these symptoms can lead to an appropriate treatment plan and reduce lost time from work. So how can an EMG help accomplish this? What can an EMG do for you? Confirm the diagnosis Exclude other diagnoses Localize the lesion Determine the severity Define the pathophysiology (what part of the nerve is affected) Provide prognostic information Detect sub-clinical disease Electrodiagnostic testing is up to 95 percent sensitive in detecting peripheral more

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