Difference between Orthopedics and Orthopaedics

Key difference: Orthopedics or Orthopaedics is the branch of medicine which deals with the correction of deformities of bones or muscles. The term ‘orthopedics’ is a generally accepted spelling for the specialty in the relevant field, but ‘orthopaedics’ is the correct medical spelling of the term.

Both, Orthopedics (or Orthopaedics) is the field of surgery which involves treatment associated with bones and muscles. Medically, the term ‘orthopaedics’ is considered to be correct, while the term ‘orthopedics’ is the most accepted one in general usage.

The term ‘orthopaedics’ was coined by the French physician and writer Nicholas Andry. It is derived from the Greek words: orthos- meaning straight, and paideion- which refers to a child. The term was originally published in 1741, and means “the Art of Correcting and Preventing Deformities in Childen” . Orthopaedics is the traditional spelling for the study of fixing bones and muscles. Orthopaedic Surgeons are doctors who are considered as specialists in bone and muscle treatments.

The usage of the term orthopedics is most commonly found in the United States. The US University and other Higher Education departments in the country follow the spelling in their medical terminologies, whereas the implementation of the real term ‘orthopaedics’ can also be found in the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgery. Orthopedic Surgery is defined as the branch of surgery which deals with the conditions of the musculoskeletal system.     

Hence, in conclusion, it canbe said that the terms orthopedics and orthopaedics, mean one and the same.

Comparison between Orthopedics and Orthopaedics:




It's a/an

Medical spelling used in the field of medicine.

Original spelling used in the field of medicine


The term is used most often in the US along with its original spelling.

The term is widely accepted in the Britain and other parts of the world in the field of medicine.

Image Courtesy: fletcherallen.org, orthotree.com 

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