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Surgical Orthopaedic Services at UPMC in Central Pa.

The surgeons at UPMC in Central Pa. set the standard of excellence for all types of spine, bone, joint and soft tissue surgeries.

Orthopaedic Conditions and Procedures

Our top priority is to keep you moving without pain or discomfort. If you require orthopaedic surgery, you can rest assured that our team will use state-of-the-art techniques and technology to help you return to play or normal activities as quickly as possible. We provide surgical care for a range of common and complex orthopaedic conditions, including:

  • ACL injury. The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is a flexible band of tissue in your knee that can be injured when it snaps or is stretched too far. During ACL reconstruction, the injured ligament is replaced with a graft. If an ACL repair is possible, your surgeon will use stitches, staples, screws or suture anchors to reattach the ligament. Our surgeons also treat injuries to other ligaments in the knee, including the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), medial collateral ligament (MCL) and lateral collateral ligament (LCL).
  • Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF). ACDF is a procedure that removes a cervical herniated disc through the front of the neck. After the disc is removed a graft is inserted and fused to the bones.
  • Artificial surgical disc surgery. The vertebrae are cushioned along the spine with gel-like discs that allow the spine to move without causing discomfort. Wear and tear can damage these discs, leading to degenerative disc disease, a condition that causes chronic back pain. Surgical disc replacement involves removing the damaged disc and replacing it with materials that mimic the motion of your natural disc.
  • Carpal tunnel release. Carpal tunnel syndrome is a painful repetitive stress injury. It is caused by pressure on the median nerve, which runs from your forearm to your hand through a small space in your wrist called the carpal tunnel. Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include tingling, numbness, weakness, and pain in your fingers or hand. During carpal tunnel release surgery, your surgeon will make a small incision in your hand and cut the carpal ligament to release pressure on your median nerve.
  • Cervical spinal fusion surgery. This procedure is performed to relieve pain caused by herniated discs or bone spurs in the cervical spine, the seven bones in the neck that make up the top portion of the spinal column. Specific procedures include anterior cervical discectomy fusion and posterior cervical fusion.
  • Discectomy. Disc fragments from a herniated disc can cause back pain and nerve pressure. In a discectomy, a small incision is made in the lamina, or the back part of the vertebra, to gain access to and remove the fragments, relieving pressure on the nerve. When performed using a special microscope to view the disc and nerves, this procedure is called a microdiscectomy. It allows the surgeon to make a smaller incision due to the improved visibility provided by the microscope.
  • Foraminotomy. Foraminal spinal stenosis occurs when there is narrowing around the openings through which nerves leave the spinal column, resulting in painful pressure. In a foraminotomy, some of the bone is cut to widen the nerve root opening. Your surgeon may also remove disc fragments and other problematic bone at the back of the vertebra.
  • Interspinous process decompression (IPD). IPD is a minimally invasive procedure used to treat pain and pressure caused by spinal stenosis by placing an implant called a spacer between your spinous processes, the thin, bony projections on the back of the spine. This procedure is often performed as an alternative to other decompression spine surgeries, such as a laminectomy, which involves removing a section of bone.
  • Kyphoplasty. This minimally invasive procedure is used to treat spine fractures caused by osteoporosis. A small balloon is inserted into the fracture using X-ray guidance. When inflated, the balloon gently raises the collapsed vertebra back to its normal position while also compressing the soft inner bone to create a void inside the vertebra. After deflating the balloon, the surgeon injects bone cement into the cavity, which helps to harden and stabilize the vertebra.
  • Laminectomy. A laminectomy may be recommended if you are experiencing painful pressure on the spinal cord or spinal nerves, often from a herniated disc or bony growths within the spinal canal. During a laminectomy a section of bone called the lamina is removed from one or more vertebrae through a small incision, relieving pressure and reducing or eliminating pain. A hemilaminectomy is a similar, more invasive procedure to remove the lamina.
  • Laminotomy. Patients with bone spurs, spinal arthritis, pinched nerves, spinal stenosis, and herniated or bulging discs may be candidates for a laminotomy. The procedure relieves pressure on the spinal canal by removing the ligamentum flavum, a ligament in the back that can thicken, causing the spinal cord to compress.
  • Lumbar spinal fusion surgery. Lumbar spinal fusion is surgery to join, or fuse, two or more vertebrae in the lower back using a bone graft or metal implants. Spinal fusion can relieve pain caused by degenerative disc disease and may be recommended as a treatment for chronic lower back pain. Specific procedures include extreme lateral interbody fusion, anterior lumbar interbody fusion, posterior lumbar interbody fusion and transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion.
  • Meniscus tear. A meniscus tear is one of the most common cartilage injuries to the knee. During meniscus surgery, damaged cartilage from your meniscus is trimmed away. If a repair is possible, your surgeon will stitch the torn pieces of cartilage together.
  • Microdiscectomy. Microdiscectomy is also known as Microdecompression spine surgery is used to treat herniated cervical, thoracic and lumbar disc. It involves removing a small portion of the bone from under the nerve root over through a small incision. This allows for more room for the nerve to heal.
  • Resurfacing. Resurfacing is a bone-preserving procedure that is an alternative to traditional joint replacement.
  • Robotic Joint Replacement. A type of robotic-assisted surgery to replace the partial knee, total knee, and total hip.
  • Rotator cuff injury. Your rotator cuff is a tendon that helps you raise and rotate your arm. During rotator cuff repair surgery, your surgeon will repair the tear in your rotator cuff and reattach it to your arm bone using stitches.
  • Sacroiliac (SI) joint fusion. SI joint fusion stabilizes the sacroiliac joint in the pelvis using implants. SI joint fusion is used to treat low back or leg pain caused by SI joint instability or other types of dysfunction.
  • Shoulder impingement. Impingement occurs when your shoulder muscles rub against the top part of your shoulder blade, causing inflammation. During shoulder impingement surgery, your surgeon will create more space in your shoulder by removing inflamed tissue.
  • Spinal cord stimulator (SCS). Also known as a dorsal column stimulator, this procedure involves implanting a device under the skin that sends a mild, low-voltage electric current to the spinal cord. SCS is often used to block the feeling or pain in patients who have not found relief with other pain management therapies or who need to decrease the use of pain medications.
  • Spinal fusion surgery. Spinal fusion is a surgical procedure used to permanently join together two or more vertebrae in the spine so there is no movement between them. This approach is most often used to eliminate pain caused by injury, fractures, spinal stenosis, spinal instability or degenerative disc disease.
  • Spine surgery. Spine surgery relieves pressure on the spinal nerves by removing portions of bone or herniated disc. In these procedures, specialized instruments are used to access the spine through small incisions.


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