Archive July 2017 XVIII, No. 7

Patient Positioning Advances

Devices designed to improve the efficiency and safety of even the most complex cases.

Jim Burger

Jim Burger, Senior Editor


proper positioning CRUCIAL CONSIDERATION Proper positioning with the right attachments can make or break a procedure.

Ask any surgeon and he'll tell you excellent outcomes depend on optimal access. Perhaps that's why OR teams sometimes spend more time positioning patients for surgery than surgeons do completing procedures.

The latest protective pads and table accessories give your surgeons the access they want, help protect your patients from skin and nerve damage, and turn OR tables into versatile surfaces your facility needs to keep pace with evolving surgical care.

Cutting-edge exposure
Outpatient total joints are one of surgery's hottest specialties with more patients seeking out facilities with the equipment and expertise to send them home soon after surgery. The anterior approach to the hip joint spares the muscle at the pelvis and femur, shortens recoveries and prepares patients for same-day discharge. This single-incision technique, which requires one leg to stay in a normal position while other is hyperextended to where the foot is on or just above the floor, has traditionally required a specialty table that's both large and relatively expensive, as much as $150,000 or more.

Enter innovative leg positioners that attach to any standard operating room table to provide surgeons with the access they need to perform anterior hip replacements. The attachments represent a significant recent breakthrough in advanced patient positioning, according to John Masonis, MD, a hip and knee surgeon at OrthoCarolina in Charlotte, N.C.

Spine procedures, which are also beginning to gain traction in the outpatient setting, rely on stable access to the vertebrae or posterior pelvic region. Surgeons must minimize muscle damage and potential pain, and manage bleeding, says John C. Liu, MD, co-director of the Spine Surgery Center at Keck Medicine of USC in Los Angeles, Calif.

"During lumbar spine surgery, it's about maximizing exposure and spine alignment and decreasing abdominal compression," says Dr. Liu. "That's how you keep intraoperative blood loss to a minimum."

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