On Friday, February 19 Sioux Center Health’s CEO Cory Nelson and Orthopedic surgeon Bryce Braaksma, DO, of Avera Orthopedics was featured on KCAU News 9 to talk about the newest technology of a surgical robotic arm now available in Sioux County to implement Partial Knee Replacement, Total Knee Replacement, and Joint Replacement (combined).

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One hospital in Sioux County has recently put itself into the county’s medical history books.

Sioux Center Health recently got a Stryker brand Mako robotic arm, which is used for orthopedic surgeries such as partial knee and total hip replacement.

“Over the last couple of years, we’ve really been looking at expanding our orthopedics line here at Sioux Center Health. After some discussion with our medical staff and board of directors, we decided that it was the right opportunity and the right time to bring robotics to Sioux County,” said Cory Nelson, Sioux Center Health.

Cory Nelson, CEO of Sioux Center Health, said the hospital is the first one in the county to have this kind of technology available for patients.

There are two orthopedic surgeons trained on how to use the robotic arm, which helps them do the surgery more accurately and precisely.

“With the robotics, it doesn’t let me go past the bone edges and makes the cuts within one millimeter of accuracy and, again, within one degree of areas vargas, where I can adjust it as well, based on the individual’s soft tissue,” said Dr. Bryce Braaksma, an orthopedic surgeon.

Dr. Bryce Braaksma is one of the two orthopedic surgeons who uses the robotic arm. He said the robot is an extension of a surgeon’s arm, and he tells it what to do and how to do it.

“It’s all based off of a CT [scan] that we use to get the correct size components and place them in the right position for each individual patient because everyone has unique anatomy, and this helps us do the plan preoperatively,” said Dr. Braaksma.

The hospital got the robotic arm at the end of December 2020 and started to be used on January 14. Since then, the surgical robot has been in seven procedures.

“You know, it’s really exciting for us. Our goal at Sioux Center Health is to make sure that we provide our patients with the most up-to-date services and the highest technology available to them. We really want our people to stay right here in Sioux County, so they don’t have to travel outside our area to receive services,” said Nelson.

Both Dr. Braaksma and Nelson mention some of the benefits of having the robotic arm for patients include shorter length of stay, the potential of having fewer infections, and quicker recoveries.

For more information on this surgical robotic arm, click here.