Down But Not Out: Joint Pain Doesn't Mean The End Of A Soldier's Career

Dec 19, 2014, 11:07 ET from Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush

CHICAGO, Dec. 19, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Knee injuries are among the most common musculoskeletal injuries in the Army and are typically caused by rigorous physical training. These injuries can have a significant impact on a young soldier's military career and threaten the loss of their occupation. Studies show that military personnel over age 40 are more than twice as likely to develop osteoarthritis as civilians.

But, there is good news for servicemen and women who struggle with joint problems. Modern advancements in technology and total joint arthroplasty (knee replacement), offer a viable solution for injured soldiers looking to continue their military careers.

A study conducted at the San Antonio Military Medical Center, spearheaded by Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush (MOR) joint replacement surgeon Tad Gerlinger, MD, explored the likelihood of soldiers returning to duty following total joint arthroplasty surgery. The study found that an overwhelming 86 percent of patients returned to duty. Of those, 70 percent were deployed to the combat zone and completed a full tour as assigned.

Arthroplasty is a surgical procedure used to restore function to a joint, most commonly the knee and hip, after it has been compromised by arthritis.  An orthopedic surgeon resurfaces the damaged knee and inserts a metal or plastic part to cap the ends of the bones that form the knee joint. Individuals who undergo this procedure see a marked decrease in joint pain and an overall improvement to their quality of life.

For more information, log on to or call 877 MD BONES. You can also log on to MOR YouTube to view a video about Dr. Gerlinger's study.

About Dr. Tad Gerlinger
Dr. Gerlinger specializes in hip and knee reconstruction at Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush. He holds an undergraduate degree from the U.S Military Academy, West Point, NY, and received his medical degree from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS), Bethesda, MD. Serving for many years in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, Dr. Gerlinger was awarded the Bronze Star and completed tours in Kosovo, Afghanistan and Iraq.

About Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush
Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush offers unparalleled orthopedic services. U.S. News & World Report ranks the orthopedic program at Rush University Medical Center among the top six programs in the nation.

SOURCE Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush