Trauma and orthopaedics
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Orthopaedic surgeons deal with traumatic injuries to the bones and joints and diseases of the skeleton, the commonest of which is osteoarthritis. The joints involved with posture and movement include the spine, hips, knees, ankles, feet, shoulders, elbows, wrist and hands. As well as looking after problems with the bones, we also deal with problems involving the muscles, ligaments and nerves, including sports injuries.
St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Trauma and Orthopaedic Department provides both elective (planned) and emergency services. We have a team of 13 consultants with special interests covering the whole range of orthopaedic conditions. The department incorporates the largest pelvic and acetabular fracture unit in the South of England, providing specialist services not available in other hospitals.
The pelvis makes up the “hip girdle” and the acetabulum is the socket of the hip joint. Three consultant surgeons specialise in this field of surgery and the Pelvic Unit also has specialist nurse support. St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust makes a significant contribution to research in this growing area of expertise.
Other tertiary referral units within Trauma and Orthopaedics at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust include hip and knee reconstruction, children’s orthopaedics and spinal surgery. A newly formed Hand Unit comprising orthopaedic and plastic surgeons will look after patients with traumatic hand and wrist injuries and diseases of the same structures, including rheumatoid and osteoarthritis. All of the St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust surgeons have close links with the Department of Rheumatology.
A number of the consultants operate at the southwest London Elective Orthopaedic Centre (SWLEOC). Opened in 2004, this is a purpose-built 65 bed unit on the site of Epsom Hospital with excellent transport links.
Now known as the Elective Orthopaedic Centre, this is the busiest joint replacement unit in the United Kingdom and one of the busiest in the world. St George’s patients needing hip replacement, knee replacement, ligament reconstruction, shoulder and foot surgery will generally undergo surgery in the Centre and then be followed up after surgery back at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. We are also moving some spine surgery to the Elective Orthopaedic Centre.
Please contact the fracture clinic on 0208 725 2787 Monday – Friday 8.30-4.30 for any fracture queries.
Hip and knee reconstruction. Two consultants specialise in joint replacement, revision hip and knee replacement and fractures around joint replacements. There is a particular interest in infection and patients with major bone loss. The surgeons work as a team with the microbiologists, infectious disease and intensive care doctors.
Complex lower limb trauma, deformity and non-union surgery. We have three surgeons who specialise in complex trauma and deformity and who are skilled in Illizarov frame techniques. These surgeons work as a team with the plastic surgeons.
Shoulder and elbow surgery. Two surgeons deal with all aspects of upper limb traumatic and elective conditions.
Spinal surgery. The two orthopaedic surgeons offer specialist reconstructive spine surgery for scoliosis, deformities, tumours and fractures. We work closely with the Neurosciences Service in providing network cancer, trauma and degenerative spine surgery.
Foot and ankle surgery. We now have a specialist Foot and Ankle Service working closely with the vascular surgeons, the Orthotic Department and the diabetic team.
Hand and wrist surgery. Our hand surgeon works as part of the Hand Unit alongside the plastic surgeons. We also have specialist nursing staff and therapists. We run a tertiary referral Hand Trauma service with consultant delivered care on a daily basis. The majority of the hand and wrist surgery is performed in the Day Case Unit.
Soft tissue knee surgery/sports injuries. Several of our surgeons provide care to patients with knee injuries including cartilage tears and cruciate ligament injuries.
As a whole, the Trauma and Orthopaedic Department is extremely well supported by specialist nurses and therapists providing pre-admission planning and post-operative rehabilitation services.
Patients with injuries will be referred to the Fracture Clinic from the Emergency Department
Patients with orthopaedic conditions must be referred by their general practitioners either through the e-Referrals Service or directly to one of our consultants.
Patients with complex problems are referred to St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust by consultants in other hospitals.
Inpatient beds are located on the fifth floor of St James’ Wing. The Outpatient and Fracture Clinic is on the ground floor of St James’ Wing. Fracture Clinics take place on a daily basis in the morning. The Day Surgery Unit is a self contained department on the St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust site.
The Elective Orthopaedic Centre is located on the Dorking Road, on the Epsom Hospital Site. The post code is KT18 7EG and telephone enquiries should be made to 01372 735 800.