HELIOS University Hospital Wuppertal
Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology (384378)
Specialized in: orthopedics, traumatology
About the Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology at HELIOS University Hospital Wuppertal
The Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology at the HELIOS University Hospital Wuppertal provides the full range of services for the diagnostics and treatment of musculoskeletal diseases. The department is certified as a supraregional Trauma Center, and therefore it admits patients with injuries of any severity and polytrauma. The priority fields of the department's clinical practice include joint replacement surgery, arthroscopic surgery, shoulder and elbow surgery, foot surgery, treatment of bone and soft tissue sarcomas, as well as treatment of infectious bone lesions (osteomyelitis), spinal injuries and diseases, including chronic back pain. The specialists of the medical facility prefer an individual approach to treatment and successfully apply it in their work. Each patient receives optimal treatment with the use of the very latest low-traumatic therapeutic techniques. During the diagnostics and treatment, doctors strictly observe hygiene and safety standards. The main goal of the medical team is to restore the musculoskeletal functions, which allow the patient to regain freedom of movement and lead a normal life. The department is headed by Prof. Dr. med. Erol Gercek.
One of the most demanded therapeutic procedures in the department is joint replacement surgery – an operation for partial or total joint replacement. The department specializes in knee, hip, shoulder, elbow and ankle joint replacement surgery. The main indication for replacing a joint with an artificial prosthesis is arthrosis (joint degeneration with its further destruction) with severe pain syndrome and limited mobility. The department's orthopedists perform joint replacement surgery using minimally invasive techniques with surgical access through several small incisions in the skin and soft tissues. When performing surgical interventions, doctors often use computer navigation systems in order to position the artificial joint as accurately as possible. An important role in the success of surgical treatment is played by the proper choice of endoprosthesis, and therefore the surgeon individually selects the optimal type of artificial joint (in some cases, the prosthesis is custom-made) prior to the intervention. The specialists of the medical facility work only with modern endoprostheses of world famous manufacturers distinguished by high reliability and durability – the service life of such an artificial joint is 15-20 years.
The department's orthopedists are proud of their vast experience in the treatment of bone and soft tissue sarcomas. The successful treatment of oncology requires an interdisciplinary approach, so patients receive care from the medical team, consisting of orthopedists, radiologists, oncologists, radiation therapists and nuclear medicine specialists. The treatment of soft tissue and bone sarcomas is based on malignancy resection, while special attention is paid to the complete removal of the tumor. In some cases, the patient undergoes chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy before surgery in order to reduce the tumor size. The specialists strive not only to save the patient from cancer, but also to preserve the function of the lower extremities and spine. Whenever required, when performing tumor removal surgery, doctors can simultaneously implant a prosthesis to reconstruct a limb or replenish the amount of bone tissue.
A special place in the work of the medical facility is occupied by the treatment of injuries and pathologies of the foot and ankle joint. Orthopedists use various conservative and surgical techniques for the treatment of degenerative tendon lesions of the foot, ankle joint arthrosis, ankle joint instability caused by ligament tear, toe deformities and malformations. The first-line treatment is always conservative therapy. The specialists resort to surgery only if sparing conservative methods do not give the desired result.
The department often admits patients with shoulder injuries and diseases such as rotator cuff tear, shoulder dislocation, shoulder instability and other pathologies. In such cases, pharmacotherapy and physiotherapy procedures are considered first of all. However, surgery is often required as well. As a progressive medical facility, the department offers a wide range of arthroscopic procedures – doctors rarely perform open shoulder surgery.
An integral part of the department's work is the treatment of musculoskeletal injuries. The area of responsibility of traumatologists of the medical facility includes the treatment of bone fractures, traumatic injuries of muscles, tendons and ligaments in all parts of the body. During long clinical activity, the department's doctors have developed effective regimens for the provision of medical care to patients with polytrauma and high-severity injuries.
The department's range of medical services includes:
- Knee, hip, shoulder, elbow and ankle joint replacement surgery (partial and total)
- Treatment of soft tissues and bone sarcomas
- Treatment of foot and ankle injuries and diseases
- Degenerative lesions of the foot tendons
- Ankle arthrosis
- Ankle instability due to ligament tears
- Toe deformities and malformations
- Treatment of shoulder and shoulder joint diseases
- Rotator cuff tear
- Shoulder dislocation
- Acute and chronic shoulder instability
- Shoulder arthrosis
- Treatment of elbow diseases
- Traumatic injuries
- Treatment of infectious bone diseases
- Treatment of spinal diseases and injuries
- Chronic back pain
- Spinal injuries
- Spinal disc herniation
- Treatment of bone fractures
- Treatment of traumatic injuries of the muscles, tendons and ligaments of all parts of the body
- Treatment of spinal injuries
- Treatment of sports injuries
- Treatment of polytrauma and severe injuries
- Other medical services
Curriculum vitae of Prof. Dr. med. Erol Gercek
Prof. Dr. med. Erol Gercek is the Head of the Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology at the HELIOS University Hospital Wuppertal. The specialist received his education at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Essen. This was followed by an internship in the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the University Hospital Essen and in the Department of Traumatology at the University Hospital Mainz, after which he held the position of Assistant Physician in the Department of Surgery at the City Hospital in Ruesselsheim. In 2001, Dr. Erol Gercek again returned to the University Hospital Mainz. During this time, the specialist underwent his board certification in Orthopedics and Traumatology, and also received additional qualification in Special Traumatology. In 2005, Prof. Gercek became Senior Physician in the Department of Traumatology at the University Hospital Mainz. In 2010, the doctor became the Head of the Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology at the hospital in Koblenz.
Photo of the doctor: (c) Helios Universitätsklinikum Wuppertal
Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology.
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