By: Carol Beck-Round | Category: Health & Fitness | Issue: September 2013
Primary care sports medicine is Dr. Steven Hardage’s specialty, but he addresses all areas of non-operative orthopedics from head to toe.
If you take time to check out the Eastern Oklahoma Orthopedic Center website (www.eooc.com), testimonials reveal what Dr. Steven Hardage wants to convey to his patients—he truly cares about seeing his patients get well without having surgery.
Dr. Hardage, a primary care sports medicine doctor, doesn’t just treat his patients’ injuries, he takes time to listen. “What sets our office apart from others, I think, is that I spend quality time with my patients,” he says. “It is really important to help a patient understand what the options are concerning an injury and what plan we will follow so we can get them healed.”
Although Dr. Hardage specializes in sports medicine, he addresses all areas of non-operative orthopedics, essentially covering everything musculoskeletal from head to toe, including the neck, back and spine to shoulders, elbows, hands, wrists, knees, hips, feet and ankles.
“We can help people with pain associated with broken bones, ankle sprains, arthritis, herniated and degenerative disks, sciatica – anything related to the musculoskeletal system,” he adds. “We take care of all joints and injuries.”
While some of his patients’ injuries are sports related, his practice sees patients for joint wear and tear, weekend warrior injuries – “just a little bit of everything.”
“If you have an ache or pain, it doesn’t mean you need surgery to correct it,” he says. “The body has the incredible power to heal itself. We can help a patient set the stage for that healing by getting the process started through a variety of options.”
Dr. Hardage emphasizes that he is not an orthopedic surgeon. “I want to focus on helping my patients avoid surgery, if possible.” Pointing out the difference between his practice and that of a primary care physician, he adds, “We offer more non-surgical treatments for joint pain and injuries. I want to help people make the appropriate decisions by looking at the options available to them before they even consider surgery.”
Dr. Hardage, who has been practicing in Claremore for nine years, joined Eastern Oklahoma Orthopedic Center in 2004. After receiving his medical degree from the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, Dr. Hardage studied family practice medicine at the University of Oklahoma – Tulsa College of Medicine, where he eventually became family practice chief resident. After his residency, he completed a primary care sports medicine fellowship.
Patients can receive most screenings and treatments on site without going elsewhere, including X-rays and epidural steroid injections. A new technique Dr. Hardage is excited about is platelet rich plasma injections (PRP), a process by which a patient’s own blood is put into a centrifuge to separate the blood from its many components. The platelet rich plasma is then collected and treated before it is injected into an injured area of bone or soft tissue, such as a tendon or ligament. “We’ve seen a lot of success with this fairly new treatment,” says Dr. Hardage. “I’m excited about the options that will be available in the future to help with healing of the tendons.”
Dr. Hardage can also be seen on the sidelines at Claremore High School and Rogers State University sporting events to assist athletes who incur injuries during the game. “I’ve always loved sports, but my passion is helping people get better, whether it’s a sports injury or other musculoskeletal problem,” he says. “I’m here to help people. My entire practice revolves around helping people get back to what they love doing.”
After 30 years in public school education, Carol Round retired and moved from Grand Lake to Claremore, Oklahoma in 2005, where she writes a weekly faith-based column which runs in 14 Oklahoma newspapers as well as several national and international publications. Three volumes of her columns have been compiled into collections: A Matter of Faith, Faith Matters and by FAITH alone. She has also written Journaling with Jesus: How to Draw Closer to God and a companion workbook, The 40-Day Challenge. This past year she has written three children’s books, a series called Nana’s 3 Jars, to teach children about the value of giving, saving and spending money. All of Carol’s books are available through Amazon. In addition to writing her weekly column, authoring books and speaking to women’s groups, she writes for Value News. She also blogs regularly at www.carolaround.com. When she is not writing or speaking, she loves spending time with her three grandchildren, working in her flowerbeds, shooting photos, volunteering at her church or going on mission trips overseas, and hiking. She is also an avid reader and loves working crosswords and trying to solve Sudoku puzzles.