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Orthopedics

Few people get through life without an orthopedic problem. Sore joints, pain from arthritis or old injuries, aching backs—these and other conditions can slow you down and keep you from the activities you love.

Today, surgery and other treatments can put many people back on track for an active life. The latest orthopedic techniques often have shorter recovery times and fewer complications than in the past. And in the Orthopedics Department at Community Medical Center, expert surgeons and other professionals are ready to give you focused, individualized treatment in a hospital unit dedicated exclusively to bone and joint care.

If you’ve been hesitating to get treatment for an orthopedic condition, or if you just want relief from joint pain, now is the time to get started.
In the Orthopedics Department at Community, you’ll have the advantages of:

Highly-trained staff
Each of the orthopedic surgeons who practice at Community is fellowship trained. That means they have completed at least one extra year of training in a subspecialty, such as sports injuries, joint replacement, shoulder surgery or surgeries of other specific joints. Our nurses are also experts—more than 60 percent are certified with special training in orthopedics, and that number is growing. These nurses devote extensive time to their patients—each cares for only three patients at a time, which is a better ratio than in most hospitals.

This excellent care results in better outcomes. Our patients are less likely to have surgical complications or infections than the national average. They also go home sooner.

Patient-centered care
Physicians and other caregivers at Community treat the whole person, not just the illness. It starts with a pre-surgery assessment to find any health issues that may affect your surgery and recovery.

Your own choices are always considered—in fact, patients at Community are part of their own care teams. We also understand that your family can be important to your healing process and we welcome them to take part. And we keep your own personal physician informed about your progress.

Excellent pain management
Pain is often the most important issue for people with orthopedic problems. We understand that more pain from surgery or other treatments is the last thing you need. In fact, pain can interfere with healing. That’s why we focus on keeping your pain under control from the start. Your pain management team includes your nurse as well as a pharmacist who is centered on the Orthopedics floor to give you immediate attention. That includes better medications and improved strategies to customize pain relief for each patient.

Orthopedic patients at Community consistently rate their pain control as excellent.

Innovative techniques
The orthopedic surgeons who practice at Community use proven techniques for a wide variety of surgeries.  Many procedures, including anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and rotator cuff repairs, can be done without a hospital stay. As an outpatient, you’ll have your procedure done in the same well-equipped surgical suites as inpatient surgeries. And people who need longer to recover stay on the same floor as our inpatients, with the same outstanding care.

Our Orthopedics Department also supports:

  • Minimally invasive techniques. In certain surgeries, these arthroscopic procedures can minimize scarring and often result in shorter hospital stays.
  • Complex surgeries, such as total joint replacements. We do 400 to 500 of these procedures each year, including hips, knees, shoulders, elbows and ankles. In many cases both hips or both knees can be replaced in one surgery, making your overall recovery time shorter.
  • State-of-the-art technologies. For example, computer-assisted total knee replacement uses an infrared camera to create an electronic model of the patient’s knee. The surgeon uses this as a guide to ensure precise placement of the new joint.
  • Children’s surgeries. Kids who need bone or joint surgery are treated at Community by a pediatric orthopedic surgeon. After surgery they are cared for by the experts in Community’s Pediatrics department. The surgeon follows up with the children and their families there.

Personalized rehabilitation
For both children and adults, rehabilitation is an essential part of recovering from an orthopedic surgery. We get you off to the right start by coming to you—a therapist from the Rehabilitation Institute of Montana (RIM) will visit you in your room right after your procedure.

A few patients will then transition to the RIM facility, which is adjacent to the Orthopedics Department. RIM also provides outpatient rehab after you are discharged.

Excellent results
Our goal is to get people back to the active lives they want—and we’re succeeding. Many patients who arrive in severe pain, using walkers or wheelchairs, are walking when they leave. In fact, they often write to tell us how they’re doing and to thank us for helping them get there. Messages like, “I’m back to fishing again,” let us know we’re doing things right.