British researchers looked at studies of 10 common orthopedic operations, including surgeries of the knee, hip, shoulder, spine and wrist. They found good evidence of the superiority of surgery over other treatments for carpal tunnel syndrome and total knee replacement.  For six other common surgeries, randomized trials found little advantage over interventions like exercise, weight management, physical therapy and drug treatment. The researchers found no controlled trials that had compared hip replacement or knee cartilage repair with nonsurgical care. The study is in The BMJ.