University Health Orthopaedics in the Health Sciences District:
Story by Ann E. Butenas
Raising the Bar on Superior Care and Providing the Optimum in Patient Experience
Discover the premier advantages of University Health Orthopaedics:
The opening of University Health 1 (UH1) in 2015 ushered in a new era of patient care in downtown Kansas City. This highly anticipated ambulatory center and orthopaedic clinic was designed to centralize all physician practices, allowing for convenient patient access, and supporting effective collaboration among physicians.
Ten large, comfortable orthopaedic examination rooms, plus CT, MRI and x-ray capabilities just steps away, provide patients the convenience of one-stop health care. Orthopaedic patients enjoy better access to advanced radiological services, thereby eliminating the need to travel to another location for imaging services before beginning their treatment. The space not only caters to the patients but has allowed its professional team to grow and open its doors to additional physicians who bring their expertise in all aspects of orthopaedics. Patients can easily access one of Kansas City’s fastest growing orthopaedic practices in Kansas City.
Top shelf honors and distinctions
The staff at UH Orthopaedics is fully committed to delivering the highest quality of care for its patients and families. This is where quality of care is not simply an ideal; it’s a lifestyle to which all practitioners
and staff are wholly committed. With a reputation built upon a solid foundation of excellence, UH Orthopaedics offers its patients the unexpected: a personalized patient experience with all the prestige and resources of a large metropolitan health care facility that is part of a not-for-profit health system.
In 2021 and again in 2023, UH Orthopaedics received The Joint Commission’s Certification for Total Joint Replacement- Hips and Knees. Joint Commission certification for Total Joints has also been earned at University Health Lakewood Medical Center for Hips and Knees, and Shoulders. What does this certification mean for patients? First of all, it improves the quality of patient care by reducing variation in
processes, thereby setting a high standard for quality and safety of care, treatment, and services. As a result, patients enjoy lower lengths of stay and faster recovery times. For shoulder replacements, it means in a majority of cases, patients will be discharged the same day of their surgery.
“UH Orthopaedics offers patients a distinct advantage as they search for the best provider for that joint replacement- proven quality outcomes,” emphasized Akin Cil, MD, Chair, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. “The Joint Commission’s rigorous examination of how we provide care and communicate with each other, and our patients allows us to focus on continuous improvement in our processes and service. We choose to undergo this scrutiny and remain committed to the highest standards of care. Patients can trust that our joint replacement programs offer improved pain management, quicker recoveries and high levels of satisfaction with physician and staff interactions equaling greater value for the patient.”
This dynamic group is committed to building a well-rounded team of providers for orthopaedic care, drawing on a diversity of practice styles, expertise and academic backgrounds. “This challenges us to improve collaboration among physicians, with the common goal of delivering the best possible patient care in more efficient ways,” indicated Dr. Cil. “Our practice is small but offers exceptional quality and choice in specialties.”
Discover the benefits of an academic practice model
Dr. Cil shared his excitement for the organization’s investment in providing state of the art facilities and technology as a way to enhance the academic practice at University Health. Dr. Cil views academic
centers as the crossroads of education and research where clinicians treat patients but also set the stage for an integrated environment of learning for younger physicians. Additionally, clinicians in these academic centers have the resources to apply the latest innovations in medicine available, even in the development phases. Dr. Cil says he greatly appreciates the synergy evident within UH Orthopaedics, which creates an optimal environment of learning for the younger physicians completing a residency or fellowship. “There has been a remarkable growth over the past few years for the orthopaedic surgery family and its scope of services” emphasized Dr. Cil. “This center allows all physicians of these services to be able to practice at the same venue, just steps away from each other, and to share ideas on how to manage common or rare complex musculoskeletal problems.” Further, Dr. Chris Shaw, Orthopaedic Sports Medicine Specialist, has been with UH for nearly a decade and has experienced growth in his practice and in the department as a whole, and he appreciates the leadership and vision the physicians and staff have for the organization. “Excellent and dynamic leadership from our department chair, along with a vision of our possibilities, shared amongst all of the department, surgeons and staff has allowed us to attract excellently trained talented people who are devoted to caring for our patient population,” he emphasized. “I think it is very telling and important that we have people who could practice anywhere and who choose to be at University Health.”
SERVICES AT UNIVERSITY HEALTH ORTHPAEDICS AT THE HEALTH SCIENCES DISTRICT
Orthopaedic Trauma and Fracture Care Orthopaedic trauma refers to significant injuries to the musculoskeletal system, often stemming from sudden accidents necessitating immediate medical care. Such injuries might vary from low-energy fractures, commonly seen in the elderly, to complex injuries from events like road accidents. Bone and joint infections can further intensify the need for urgent intervention. Dr. Jonathan Dubin, MD, recognizes the profound impact of traumatic incidents, such as vehicular collisions or severe falls. Committed to facilitating comprehensive recovery, Dr. Dubin brings his expertise as an orthopaedic trauma surgeon to manage intricate cases, from pelvic and acetabular (hip) fractures to non-healing fractures in extremities. Achieving full recovery often entails a prolonged journey and necessitates collaboration with fellow orthaepedic experts to ensure patients achieve the best possible outcomes. “We often collaborate with each other when a patient’s injuries require the clinical expertise of several of us. A team approach results in the best outcomes for our patients,” stated Dr. Dubin.
Peter Everson, MD, also an orthopaedic trauma surgeon, joined this practice in September. Dr. Everson completed medical school at the UMKC School of Medicine in 2016. “I am excited to return to Kansas City to join this growing practice,” stated Dr. Everson.
Dr. Houssam Bouloussa, MD, MS, joined the University Health Orthopaedics team in late 2022 after completing rigorous fellowship training programs. He specializes in diagnosing conditions like osteoporosis, herniated discs, and degenerative disc disease. As an increasing number of patients across various age groups seek treatment, Dr. Bouloussa offers minimally invasive surgical options for care. Spine surgery involves procedures to correct or alleviate issues related to the vertebral column or backbone. This can include treatments for conditions like herniated discs, where a disc between the vertebrae ruptures; osteoporosis, a condition where bones become brittle and weak; and degenerative disc disease, which is the wear and tear of the discs over time. Minimally invasive options aim to achieve the same outcomes as traditional surgery but with smaller incisions, potentially leading to less pain and quicker recovery for the patient. Dr. Bouloussa describes the University Healthy Orthopaedics clinical practice as “a warm and friendly work atmosphere conducive to delivering the best patient care even in challenging or critical situations, which is invaluable.”
Orthopaedic Sports Medicine Care
Sports Medicine at University Health Orthopaedics includes treating injuries of the ACL, knee and hip articular cartilage as well as the meniscus and ligaments of the knee. Dr. Shaw brings to the center his specialization in hip labral injuries and preservation surgery of the hip using advanced arthroscopic techniques. Dr. Shaw integrates a range of orthobiologic methods into his medical practice, notably utilizing Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) and stem cell treatments. These advanced therapies harness the body’s natural healing processes to repair and rejuvenate damaged tissues in orthopaedic conditions. “I chose to practice at UH for two reasons: I was fortunate to have excellent teachers in my training, and I hoped to be that for future orthopaedic surgeons, and I repeatedly stated throughout my training, and in interviews, that I wanted the opportunity to help people,” expressed Dr. Shaw. “I feel that we truly provide a needed service for our patients and the community as a whole.”
Hand and Wrist Care
Issues with the hand and wrist can significantly impede upper body functionality, affecting daily tasks both at home and in professional settings. Conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome, fractures of the hand and fingers, ganglion cysts, and procedures such as wrist arthroscopy, wrist fusion, and ulnar nerve decompression are among the common challenges individuals may face. Dr. Amelia Sorensen, MD, is a dedicated hand and wrist specialist with expertise in treating adult patients across all age groups, ensuring they regain optimal hand and wrist function.
Total Joint Replacement Care
Total joint replacement is a surgical procedure wherein damaged or arthritic joints are replaced with artificial ones, commonly made of metal, plastic, or ceramic materials. This surgery aims to alleviate pain and restore function lost due to damage or degeneration of the joint. Most commonly addressed joints include the knee, hip, and shoulder. Arthritis is an inflammatory condition that affects the joints, causing pain, swelling, and reduced mobility. Over time, it can lead to the wear and tear of the joint, necessitating surgical intervention. Apart from arthritis, direct injuries or chronic stress on joints can also result in significant damage. Orthopaedic doctors specialize in diagnosing, managing, and treating conditions related to the musculoskeletal system, which includes joints. For issues like arthritis, wear and tear, or injuries, an orthopaedic doctor might initially recommend non-surgical treatments such as physical therapy, medications, or injections to alleviate pain and improve joint function. However, if these treatments do not provide relief or if the damage to the joint is too severe, the doctor might recommend a total joint replacement surgery. This surgery can significantly improve the quality of life by reducing pain and enhancing mobility and function of the affected joint. When consulting with each patient, Dr. Akin Cil believes in treating the whole patient rather than just the singular medical issue. “Our understanding of joint problems is evolving with research on a continued basis,” he indicated. “Current evidence-based medicine guidelines allow us to recommend state-of-the-art treatment modalities for joint related conditions. My understanding of treatment involves a holistic approach to patients’ well-being, rather than just focusing on the current problem of hips and knees or shoulder and elbow.”
All treatment modalities are tailored to a patient’s individual needs. Using a highly conservative approach initially, Dr. Cil assists patients through interventions such as physical therapy, injections and natural supplements to assist them back to their daily lives. “In most cases, we are very successful,” said Dr. Cil. “If we need any surgical intervention, I like to use the least invasive method first. However, some conditions require more extensive interventions, and we have the capability of addressing these problems with the implants that are currently available to us, such as joint replacements.”
Ankle and Foot Care
University Health Orthopaedics has recently expanded its offerings to include a specialized focus on foot and ankle care. This encompasses the diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of conditions such as fractures, arthritis in the foot and ankle region, injuries or issues related to the Achilles tendon, and more. Dr. L. Nathan Gause, MD, MBA, a distinguished specialist in foot and ankle care, became a part of this practice in early September. His expertise and insights will further enhance the comprehensive orthopaedic care provided by the institution.