Dr. Richard Schmidt: My name is Richard G. Schmidt, MD. I’m the director of orthopedic oncology services here at CTCA Eastern. An orthopedic oncologist is an orthopedic surgeon who specializes in orthopedic cancer care. We’re able to offer all kinds of cancer care for the cancer patient. Unfortunately, what happens in some institutions is that the priorities of the institution come first and the patent comes second.
For example, I had a lady that came to CTCA here in Philadelphia who had a hip replacement because she had arthritis, but she also had multiple myeloma which is a blood type of cancer, which is fairly common. Many places in the country who do joint replacement, they like to do things pretty much by that rigid protocol approach, almost kind of like a factory, see the patient, do a joint replacement, everything is done the same everything is kind of mechanized.
And while that may be ok for the regular patient who just has arthritis, that approach does not work for the cancer patient because that patient has specialty needs. For example, this particular individual had somewhat of a low hemoglobin, she had a lower platelet count than normal, so we were able to identify those specific needs and address them before the surgery and then do her hip replacement and then have her go home. So, that’s really what makes us different than I think most institutions. We tailor our care for the cancer patient, and then we address the specific needs that they have.