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The Tidelands Health Newsroom

Published on May 19, 2008

Georgetown Hospital System’s Waccamaw Community Hospital Introduces New Technology

Monday, May 19, 2008

Murrells Inlet, SC New technology – in the form of a special computer-assisted device - is being used by surgeons in some hip and knee replacement procedures at Georgetown Hospital System’ s Waccamaw Community Hospital. 

Surgeons will use an imageless computer-assisted system to perform these types of surgical procedures for some patients.  The use of the computer system allows for more accurate positioning of the implants which over time may mean less wear and increased longevity of the implanted prosthetic.  Additionally, this type of procedure can decrease instability and dislocation due to more accurate positioning of the implants.

Dr. Eric Heimberger and Dr. Michael Bohan of Carolina Orthopaedic Specialists recently began performing image-guided total knee and/or hip replacement procedures at Waccamaw Community Hospital.

 “This technology offers numerous benefits to patients that meet certain criteria,” said Dr. Heimberger, “The procedure is minimally invasive and provides improved patient care.”

One of the most challenging parts of  knee replacement is finding the implant’s correct axis and        ensuring that ligaments have the right tension after the operation; otherwise the patient will not be able to move the leg smoothly. In addition, implants need to be positioned correctly so there is decreased pain after the operation.  

In the case of hip replacement, the computer-assisted surgery focuses on the challenges associated with leg length. This device allows surgeons to check the leg length during the operation and also determine if the range of motion is appropriate. Surgeons can verify the correct position of the implant so it won't dislodge later on.

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Tidelands Health is the largest health care provider in our region - with three hospitals and more than 50 outpatient locations that stretch from Hemingway to North Myrtle Beach. At Tidelands Health, we are anchored by our mission to help people live better lives through better health.