Orthopedic surgeon Richard Jones, M.D., of Southeastern Sports Medicine & Orthopedics, a department of Pardee Hospital, is now using a new technology to offer guided personalized surgery for shoulder replacements. On May 31, while performing shoulder replacement surgery at Pardee, Dr. Jones became the first surgeon in the United States to use this technology.
ExactechGPS® Guided Personalized Surgery allows surgeons to combine preoperative planning with intraoperative computer-assisted technology. The ExactechGPS Shoulder Application has been used successfully in the United Kingdom, Spain, France and Australia. As a design surgeon with Exactech, Dr. Jones was a natural pick to perform this surgery in the U.S., having worked with surgeons around the world to develop and refine this procedure.
Pardee first introduced ExactechGPS for knee replacements, but this is the first time the platform has been used on shoulders. “This is a game changer,” said Dr. Jones. “We start with a CT scan of the patient’s shoulder prior to surgery. This data is plugged into the ExactechGPS software, allowing us to perform the surgery virtually before the actual surgery takes place.” Dr. Jones notes that this new technology allows the surgeon to predict what implants to use and exact locations, all in advance and based on 3-D modeling from the CT scan.
ExactechGPS pairs surgeon expertise with an advanced computer system to perform the patient’s shoulder surgery with a goal of improved accuracy and precision. The ExactechGPS Shoulder Application’s preoperative planning tool is designed to help surgeons understand their patient’s anatomy prior to surgery and plan the surgery through a virtual simulation. Surgeons can then execute their plan in real time during the surgery based on a 3-D anatomical model of the patient’s shoulder, making adjustments as needed. This unique technology gives greater visibility to the shoulder anatomy, allowing for more consistent and accurate implant placement.
“With a traditional shoulder replacement surgery, the surgeon makes judgments about placement and types of implant based on experience and patient information,” said Dr. Jones. “With standard shoulder exposure techniques, the entire anatomy of the shoulder blade and socket is not visible. This may compromise accuracy of implant placement. When we are more accurate in placement of the socket components, we expect to see an increased lifespan of the implant, improved functionality and a reduction in complications associated with an implant. That’s good news for patients.”
Any patient who needs a shoulder replacement is a candidate for this new type of surgery. Dr. Jones notes that the only exception would be a shoulder revision. For more information about ExactechGPS or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jones, call 828-274-4555 or visit pardeehospital.org.
Pardee UNC Health Care is a not-for-profit community hospital founded in 1953 and is managed by UNC Health Care. The hospital is licensed for 222 acute care beds. Pardee has several locations separate from the main campus, including a comprehensive physician practice network, two urgent care locations and five orthopedic clinics. For more information or to find a physician, visit pardeehospital.org.