Robotic joint replacement technology and new national certification create opportunities for orthopedic surgery patients across the region
Two recent advancements at OrthoKansas—a regional destination for progressive, multidisciplinary orthopedic and sports medicine care—ensure LMH Health is a vital partner for comprehensive, state-of-the-art musculoskeletal care. Through a new certification from The Joint Commission and significant upgrades in surgical robotics technology, OrthoKansas’ experts in sports medicine and orthopedic care can provide innovative treatments and therapies for athletes and patients of all ages and abilities.
Advanced Total Hip and Knee Replacement Certifications from the Joint Commission Gold Seal of Approval
The LMH Health OrthoKansas team has earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® for Advanced Total Hip and Knee Replacement Certification. LMH is one of only two hospitals in Kansas to earn this designation, both west of the Kansas City metro area.
The certification, in collaboration with the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, recognizes the highest standards of care during a total hip and total knee replacement, from pre-surgical orthopedic consultation to intraoperative and post-surgical follow-up care.
“LMH Health OrthoKansas is a regional destination committed to providing patients with superior, comprehensive patient-centered musculoskeletal care,” said Russ Johnson, LMH Health President and CEO. “Our team of experts in orthopedic and sports medicine care provide innovative treatments for patients of all ages and abilities. Patients greatly benefit from the depth and breadth of expertise of our hip and knee replacement specialists – Drs. Adam Goodyear, James Huston and Richard Wendt.”
Dr. Goodyear, who is also the LMH Health Chief of Surgery, shared his appreciation for the hard work it took to earn the achievement.
“This certification is a culmination of the work over the four years I’ve been here and building on the foundation that Dr. Wendt laid for us. We would not be here without the amazing work of an incredible team composed of exceptional people,” he said. “As an accredited Total Joint Replacement program, patients can feel confident that they are treated with the most up to date, evidence-based practices that result in superior outcomes.”
Robot-assisted partial and total joint knee and hip replacements
When Marsha Jones needed a double knee replacement in October 2020, she turned to Dr. Huston at OrthoKansas for help.
In addition, patients have access to the newest technology, including the MAKO robotic arm, an instrument used to perform partial and total knee replacements, as well as total hip replacements. LMH Health has two Mako robots to serve patients – one at the Main Campus and another at the West Campus, allowing for outpatient joint replacement surgery at the Lawrence Surgery Center. Goodyear said the Mako has been proven to facilitate a shorter hospital stay, typically less pain, and quicker return to function.
“The Mako system can be more precise than traditional surgical techniques because it can create a 3-D model of each patient’s joint,” Dr. Goodyear said. “Using the system, physicians create a personalized surgical plan. The robotic arm allows surgeons to work within the parameters created and use it to assist in placing new joints. Mako also allows us to perform both knee and hip replacements, which is something that other robotic surgical systems don’t do. Our patients receive the advanced care they deserve with the use of this technology.”
“I’m very thankful I was able to have surgery here and to have the robotic arm. I feel that really made things much better,” Jones said. “I think I had a better result from surgery. Dr. Huston was able to be more precise, leading to a better outcome and faster healing.”
Jones experienced minimal discomfort after surgery and took prescribed pain medication while recovering in the hospital, but didn’t require it after returning home. She was amazed when she found that she was able to walk without the use of a walker or cane less than two weeks after surgery.
“I felt like my recovery was much faster than I expected,” she said. “The Mako robotic arm and an excellent surgeon made for a good outcome.”
Donor support brings advanced surgical technologies to Lawrence
In early 2020, Sue and Dana Anderson made a $1 million challenge gift to the LMH Health Foundation to support a second heart cath lab, the Mako robot and two new da Vinci robotic surgical systems to replace the da Vinci system that has been used at LMH Health since 2013 by general surgeons, urologists and obstetricians/gynecologists.
Among other things, the new robots will help ensure LMH Health patients experience:
- Quicker and less painful recoveries after surgeries.
- Shorter hospital stays and reduced reliance on pain medications.
- The many conveniences of having surgery close to home, a benefit to them and their families and friends.
- Seamless transitions to post-surgical therapy or treatment.
Dana underwent hip replacement surgery at LMH Health OrthoKansas and “couldn’t be happier with the results.” He says he was inspired to make this gift by his surgeon, Dr. Adam Goodyear, who explained the benefits the orthopedic robot could provide.
"Recent studies have demonstrated that patients have decreased levels of pain and shorter hospital stays when having a total joint replacement with the Mako system,” Goodyear said. “Our goal is always to provide our patients with proven, cutting-edge orthopedic surgical techniques and technology that can improve patient experience and outcomes."
In addition, the new upgrades will help LMH Health recruit and retain the best surgeons to provide excellent care to patients in the region.
“People in a position to give are grateful to learn about opportunities like this,” said Dr. Jon Heeb of Lawrence Urology Specialists, who uses the da Vinci system. “If they find something they feel good about supporting, it brings them joy. Part of the reason patients have good experiences at LMH Health is due to the support our donors have provided.”
“The work our doctors do is important to our entire community,” Dana Anderson said. “Sue and I were happy to do what we could to provide them with the very best technology they need to perform at the highest level.”
LMH Health Foundation has committed to help the not-for-profit community hospital raise $3 million of the $5 million total cost to purchase the robotics and cath lab. Thus far, we’re proud to announce that we’ve raised $2.3 million toward this critical need.
“We are so grateful to Sue and Dana — and to others who already have stepped up to contribute to this patient-centered initiative,” said Rebecca Smith, executive director of LMH Health Foundation and vice president of strategic communication at LMH Health. “Sadly, we lost Sue to leukemia in late February 2021, but her philanthropic spirit continues to inspire us all.”
Gifts such as the one the Andersons have made underscore the importance of the role the community plays in making LMH Health a stellar healthcare provider.
Exceptional care close to home
LMH Health and OrthoKansas have the clinicians, technology and facilities to provide healthcare that’s not only exceptional for a community hospital—it’s among the best anywhere. Patients benefit from our home at the LMH Health West Campus, with access to convenient, collaborative and innovative care all under one roof. Our multidisciplinary approach gives us the ability to treat most orthopedic injuries and conditions in house, closer to where our patients live and play.
“When our community members partner with us, we all benefit,” said Russ Johnson, LMH Health president and CEO. “Because of support from the Andersons and our many other donors, our hospital continues to offer the best in patient care."