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Orthopedic Studies

Research within the Orthopedic department in the Sint Maartenskliniek is facilitated by the Orthopedic Research Uunit of the department of Research, Development & Education (RD&E). Five scientists, one research nurse and administrative personnel give professional support to the orthopedic surgeons at almost all aspects during all study phases. This ensures the validity and continuity of the data collected.

The Orthopedic Department is divided into 6 units, each specialized in one single area of orthopedic surgery. The six units are:

Currently, sixteen orthopedic surgeons, one sports medicine physician, one fellow, and five nurse practitioners and physician assistants are connected to one or more of the units.

The approach for conducting research at the department is evidence based. Multicentre randomized trials and Cochrane literature reviews are conducted when possible. Examples are the multicenter randomized studies on the comparison of knee prostheses. Also, cohort studies are used in appropriate cases. The observational, international study on three surgical techniques for lumbar fusion for spondylolisthesis is one example. Gait analysis studies are performed in close collaboration with the Gait Analysis Laboratory of the Department of RD&E. Gait studies are currently performed with single and double osteotomy cases within the Knee Reconstruction Unit, with foot deformity patients in the Foot and Ankle Reconstruction Unit and in patients with idiopathic scoliosis in the Spine Unit.

In addition to the projects described, baseline epidemiological data is collected for patients undergoing specific types of operations. These databases can be used later in historic cohort studies and form the basis for the increasing demand for quality control.