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HSA expands trauma care

| 30/07/2017 | 0 Comments
CNS Local Life

(L-R) HSA trauma surgeons Pekko Kuusela and Toni-Karri Pakarinen

(CNS Local Life): The Health Services Authority (HSA) has hired a second trauma surgeon. With the two specialist physicians, as well as new and refitted equipment, the orthopaedic and trauma unit is able to expand the range of treatments available for lower limb injuries and fractures. The ability to perform advanced trauma care is “significantly decreasing” the number of local patients who need to go overseas for treatment, says the HSA.

In the face of what seems like near-daily accidents on the roads of Cayman, the upgrading of the trauma unit would appear to be a timely improvement at the Cayman Islands Hospital.

Dr Toni-Karri Pakarinen, a consultant orthopaedic and trauma surgeon with more than more than 10 years experience from his previous job at a medical centre in Finland, began working at the hospital at the beginning of May, stated an HSA press release. Dr Pakarinen and orthopaedic and trauma surgeon Dr Pekko Kuusela, who has been at the HSA since 2016, have been using new techniques and equipment to treat and manage complex trauma cases.

In June, they performed a surgical procedure on a patient who had an upper end femur fracture, and in less than a week post-operation, the patient was able to walk independently. The operation was done using a surgical nailing system for the treatment of complex lower limb fractures. This system, which was recently acquired, involves inserting nails into the fracture site through small holes, making it less invasive compared to previous methods.

“The new, modern equipment enables us to manage more versatile and complex trauma cases,” said Dr Pakarinen. “They are also more minimally invasive compared to their predecessors and provide more stability for fracture sites to enable early mobilisation of affected extremity. This usually leads to better healing of the fracture and faster recovery for patients.”

The doctors emphasised, though, that surgery is just one part of trauma care; physiotherapy and rehabilitation are extremely important components of the treatment as well.

New equipment is expected to arrive in a few months. “By the end of the year we will have completed our entire trauma instrumentation system for every type of trauma except spine,” said Dr Pakarinen.

Dr Kuusela added, “These long-awaited systems benefit the entire island. There will no longer be a need to send people overseas because we have the equipment to provide complete orthopaedic and trauma care here at the HSA.”

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Category: Medical and Health

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