Frequently Asked Questions

What types of conditions do the orthopaedic providers at Bone & Joint treat?
Do you always recommend surgery?
What non-surgical treatments might be available for my specific problem?
What is the difference between fellowship-trained orthopaedic surgeons and those without fellowship training?
What does it mean to be board-certified?
Do all surgeons have to be board-certified to perform surgery?
How do the sports medicine physicians at Bone & Joint differ from primary care or non-surgical orthopaedic doctors?
What if I'm an injured athlete?
How is Bone & Joint different?
What insurances does Bone & Joint accept?

What you can expect when you visit Bone & Joint


What types of conditions do the orthopaedic providers at Bone & Joint treat?

We treat a wide variety of disorders involving all areas of the musculoskeletal system—bones, joints, and connective tissues. We provide care for degenerative diseases like arthritis, sports injuries, fractures, sprains, ligament tears, structural abnormalities, sciatica, herniated disc, degenerative disc disease, and many other types of orthopaedic conditions.

Do you always recommend surgery?

No. Many conditions we see can be treated without surgery. After we make a diagnosis, we will discuss your condition and the treatment options with you. We will recommend the least invasive non-surgical treatment that puts you on the path to healing.

What non-surgical treatments might be available for my specific problem?

We have several non-surgical treatments available in our clinic. Depending on your condition, we may be able to treat you with different medications, such as muscle relaxants, anti-inflammatory medications, or pain relievers. We may be able to relieve your symptoms through physical therapy, activity modification, or joint injections. If you are still experiencing pain, we may refer you to one of our pain management specialists for care.

What is the difference between fellowship-trained orthopaedic surgeons and those without fellowship training?

Orthopaedic surgeons can successfully perform general orthopaedic surgery with the training they receive during their internship and residency training programs. Fellowship training helps surgeons gain additional training, experience, and advanced skills in their specific area of orthopaedic interest.

What does it mean to be board-certified?

Surgeons and other healthcare providers earn board certification by successfully completing training from an accredited program and completing a series of rigid written and oral examinations. However, a physician cannot take these examinations until he or she has been in practice for two full years. Doctors who choose to become board-certified have mastered the skills they learned during their residency training programs.

Do all surgeons have to be board-certified to perform surgery?

No. Board certification is optional. Not all surgeons are able or interested in becoming board-certified.

How do the sports medicine physicians at Bone & Joint differ from primary care or non-surgical orthopaedic doctors?

Sports medicine and orthopaedic doctors typically received their medical degrees in the disciplines of family medicine, pediatrics or internal medicine. They are often primary care physicians who have a special interest in caring for active people and athletes of all ages. The sports medicine providers at Bone & Joint have advanced training that allows them to diagnose and treat injuries and other orthopaedic health issues. Sports medicine specialists care for people who have limited mobility due to injury or illness. They also care for athletes who have been injured during sporting events or other activities.

Our primary care orthopaedic physician, Dr. Messerly, is not an orthopaedic surgeon; rather, he specializes in non-surgical treatment of musculoskeletal conditions. He refers people to orthopaedic surgeons and other specialists when surgery is needed. Dr. Messerly has completed a sports medicine fellowship and a certificate of added qualifications in sports medicine.

He is one of eight sports medicine specialists on our team.

What if I'm an injured athlete?

Our doctors specialize in sports-related injuries and in working with athletes of any age. And because they enjoy being active, they realize how important it is to get you back to your sport. They understand return-to-play requirements and work with athletes, team physicians, trainers, coaches, and others to get athletes back in the game as quickly and as safely as possible.

How is Bone & Joint different?

Bone & Joint is a multi-specialty clinic that has pain management, sports medicine, and orthopaedic experts from many specialty areas working together in one place.

From sports medicine, orthopaedic physicians, surgeons, pain management specialists, and physician assistants, to athletic trainers and podiatrists, your diagnosis and treatment take place in one convenient location with the collaboration of an entire team of experts.

You receive high-quality, continuous care—from your initial diagnostic appointment through your final physical therapy session—in a timely manner. And because we understand some muscle and joint concerns just can't wait, we have expanded our Walk-in Care department. 

Which insurance plans does Bone & Joint accept?

Bone & Joint accepts many types of insurance plans. Please review the list to see if your insurance carrier is listed.

If you do not see your insurance carrier listed, please call 800.445.6442 and ask to speak with a verification-of-benefits specialist. Since we are classified as an orthopedic and pain management specialist, we can sometimes obtain an out-of-network authorization for you.

Please note: If you purchased insurance through the Marketplace -- the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or ObamaCare -- please call us. We'll make sure we are contracted by your plan.  

What you can expect when you visit Bone & Joint

At Bone & Joint, we believe the more you know about your problem, the faster and better you'll recover, and the less likely you are to suffer from future injury.

That's why we provide you with a Patient Information Handbook (PDF) and downloadable information about common injuries and procedures as well as how to rehabilitate and how to prevent future injuries.

Your First Appointment

Please arrive early so we can complete your initial paperwork. Also, bring the following:

  • Patient's insurance card
  • List of current prescriptions and/or over-the-counter medications, including dose and frequency
  • Information about the patient's medical and surgical history
  • Recent test results, X-rays or relevant records

We encourage you to request an appointment by calling 1-800.445.6442 or visiting our online Appointment Page.

How to best communicate with your healthcare team

You and the members of your healthcare team are partners in the management of your orthopaedic condition or pain. We’ve put together a few tips for you, so our partnership works as efficiently as possible.

  • Write down your questions and take notes. Before your appointment, make a list of your most important questions and concerns. Bring this list to your physician’s office. As you and your provider discuss each question, jot down a note about each answer.
  • Bring a trusted family member or good friend to your appointment. Sometimes the stress of a medical visit makes it easy to miss important information. Having someone with you to take notes and ask questions is often helpful.
  • Be honest and open. Don't hold back. Remember: You are an important part of the care team. You are the only one who has the information your medical team needs to know in order to diagnose your condition and relieve your pain.

    Your medical team will take the time to listen to your concerns. If you have a personal or family history of an addictive disease or mental illness, tell your healthcare provider so that he or she can tailor a care plan or pain management plan for you.

    Our providers have seen many situations. Don’t be embarrassed to tell them anything. They’ve probably heard it before. Do tell them what you are experiencing so they can get you back to health as soon as possible.
  • Make sure you understand all instructions and explanations. Remember: every question is a good question. Our providers don’t want you to go home without a clear understanding of all the topics discussed at your appointment.

    If you don’t understand what your provider is talking about, it can affect your care. Your provider doesn’t want that to happen. Ask him or her to explain your instruction or condition in a different way until you’re sure you understand. Before you leave the exam room, repeat your instructions back to the person who gave them to you. This final check ensures you understand all the details and that your notes are accurate.

    After you return home, follow the instructions and treatment plan. Don't make changes to the plan without checking with your healthcare provider. If the plan isn't working well, call 800.445.6442 as soon as possible, and explain the problem.

Knowledge and Resources

724 South 8th St.
Medford, WI 54451

100 Eagle Dr.
Merrill, WI 54452

1767 Park Ave.
Plover, WI 54467

225000 Hummingbird Rd.
Wausau, WI 54401

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