Surgeons will often mention using conservative treatment when treating patients with a non-emergency complaint. But what does it mean?
Conservative treatment generally refers to treatment that is less-invasive than surgery. The exact type of conservative treatment varies by the condition your provider is treating. Some examples of conservative treatment include doing physical therapy; changing diet; increasing exercise; cortisone shots; or monitoring an issue.
Surgery is hard on a body. In non-emergency cases, surgeons often prefer that patients try conservative treatments first to see if they will alleviate the issue without going to surgery.
For many conservative treatments to have a chance to work, the patient must be a part of the process. For example, if you are prescribed physical therapy, you must do the at-home exercises as directed and not just during your physical therapy appointments.
If surgery is needed later, the actions you did earlier such as improving your diet or performing physical therapy exercises can make recovery easier.