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St. Cloud Surgical Center

The Outpatient Outlook

A St. Cloud Surgical Center Blog

Mako Robotic-Arm Assisted Surgery for Knee and Hip with Dr. Andrew Mulder

Mako SmartRobotics™ is a smart solution for joint pain, where surgeons see more, and you keep more.

Not only is Dr. Andy Mulder a renowned orthopedic surgeon specializing in hip and knee replacement surgery, he’s also an excellent conversationalist. We recently sat down with Dr. Mulder to talk about all things Mako SmartRobotics™ and how the technology is helping the patients at St. Cloud Surgical Center get back to living a healthy lifestyle at any age! 

For Dr. Mulder, being an orthopedic surgeon incorporates the best of both worlds that medicine offers: the relationship side with patient care and the physical side with surgery. When choosing a specialty in orthopedics, hip and knee was an obvious answer. Both allow for fairly immediate change. You come in with a worn-out joint and leave with a shiny new one. Dr. Mulder stated that hip and knee replacements aren’t slowing down! It’s estimated that by 2030, orthopedic surgeons will complete over one million knee replacements and half a million hip replacements yearly.

The number one culprit of joint pain: ARTHRITIS 

While other factors can contribute to the wear down in our joints, it is widely accepted that the most common cause for joint replacement is arthritis. Osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteonecrosis, and post-traumatic arthritis are the most common forms of this disease. When you have exhausted all other conservative treatment options and continue to experience significant pain, stiffness, or problems with the function of your joint, surgery will most likely be the next step. 

The goal of a total joint replacement is to relieve pain and make it possible to perform daily activities again. At the St. Cloud Surgical Center, we use Mako SmartRobotics™ for total hip and total or partial knee replacements. While the world of robotics is still relatively new and can be intimidating for patients, Dr. Mulder likes to remind patients it’s just a tool. In the world of orthopedic surgery, there are many tools – hammers, screws, and now robots! 

How Does Mako Robotic Surgery Work? 

Mako SmartRobotics™ uses a 3D CT-based planning software allowing your surgeon to learn more about your anatomy and create a personalized joint replacement surgical plan. That’s right; this is a custom surgery plan! During surgery, your doctor will be guided by Mako’s AccuStop™ technology only to complete the pre-determined plan. Ultimately, your surgeon will cut less with Mako by completing the procedure precisely as planned. When using this technology, you can expect your surgery to be highly efficient, safer, and accurate. Early studies even show that recovery may be quicker with Mako!

St. Cloud Surgical Center is a special place to have your joint surgery. Not only have we been named the number one surgery center in Minnesota, we have a combination of culture and reputation that is a cut above the rest; just ask Dr. Mulder. In his words, “The technology and training of surgeons can be found elsewhere, but what sets us apart is the ability to do world-class joint replacements in an outpatient setting at high volume.”

In short, we offer an efficient, cost-effective joint replacement in an outpatient setting that doesn’t exist anywhere else. Learn more about Mako and Dr. Mulder in the video below. 

For more information on Dr. Andrew Mulder and his current practice, visit St. Cloud Orthopedics


FREE In-Person Community Educational Event: Inspire, the Leading Alternative to CPAP

Struggling to get a good night’s sleep with your CPAP? Learn how Inspire might be able to help during an educational webinar presented by Dr. Ron Hanson on Wednesday, May 24th at 3:30 p.m.

LOCATION: Country Inn and Suites Little Falls

209 16th Street NE, Little Falls, Minnesota 56345

Inspire is the only FDA-approved obstructive sleep apnea treatment that works inside your body to treat the root cause of sleep apnea with just the click of a button. No mask, no hose, just sleep.

Learn more at a free community education event presented by:

Dr. Ron Hanson of St. Cloud Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic

St. Cloud Surgical Center

RSVP for the event by calling: 320-229-3201

Register Now

Lapiplasty® 3D Bunion Correction™ with Dr. Gregory Rouw

With 30 years of experience and a flourishing practice, Dr. Gregory Rouw knows a thing or two about issues of the foot and ankle!

As a committed figure skater in his youth, Dr. Gregory Rouw has been familiar with the field of podiatry for many years. During his figure skating career, he met an excellent podiatrist who inspired him to pursue the profession. After 16 years working in the field, he teamed up with his wife, Dr. Karen Rouw, to build their practice. The duo is well respected in the community and has helped many Central Minnesotans return to the healthy lifestyles they love!

Like other podiatrists at St. Cloud Surgical Center, one of the things Dr. Rouw loves most about the foot is the challenge it brings. The human foot is very complex, comprised of 26 bones, 33 joints, and more than 100 muscles, tendons, and ligaments that provide support, balance, and mobility. For the mechanism to work correctly, all of these pieces must work seamlessly together; even the slightest disruption to the foot mechanism can cause extreme pain. One of the most common disruptions we see are bunions, and if not corrected, they can cause further issues, including hammertoes, arthritis, and more. 

It is the goal of all surgeons to treat patients’ issues using conservative methods. However, they may not permanently alleviate the pain from bunions, and surgery is necessary. You may be a strong candidate for surgery if you’re experiencing one or more of the following symptoms that have gone uncorrected following conservative measures: 

  • Deformations of the foot
  • Unable to fit into proper shoewear
  • Ongoing pain or aching in the joint
  • Deformities start to appear on other toes
  • Pain under the ball of the foot

At St. Cloud Surgical Center, Dr. Rouw uses the Lapiplasty® procedure for bunionectomies. Lapiplasty® 3D Bunion Correction™ is a patented, advanced design to correct all three dimensions of the bunion at the root of the problem, i.e., the unstable joint. Dr. Rouw prefers this procedure because it allows for more precision when correcting the deformity by using specific instrumentation. In turn, patients are back to their daily activities sooner! Learn how Lapiplasty® works here.

The biggest thing for patients after surgery is the timeline for recovery. While every surgery and patient is different, the typical recovery for bunion surgery using the Lapiplasty® procedure is 4 to 6 months. A typical timeline is outlined below. 

At two weeks, patients can begin to bear weight on their foot. 

In the next four to six weeks, patients can walk in their boot and return to light activities. 

At six to eight weeks, patients can transition into regular shoes. 

About four to six months, most patients will resume activities and return to normal footwear. 

While the recovery time is not short, the result of walking without pain and returning to your favorite footwear is undoubtedly a win for patients! 

For more information on Dr. Gregory Rouw and his current practice, visit Central MN Foot & Ankle


March Is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

Colorectal cancer, or CRC, is the second deadliest cancer in the United States. It can affect any age, gender, or fitness level. No one is immune to being diagnosed with colon cancer. In most cases, colorectal cancer occurs in people ages 45 or older but can affect younger patients as well. That is why every year in March, we spotlight the disease in hopes of inspiring more people to get checked starting at age 45. 

Why should I have a colonoscopy? 

With 1 in 24 people being diagnosed with colon cancer in their lifetime, it is extremely important to get screened. Through years of research, we know screening is the number one way to prevent or detect the disease. Screenings, as recommended by your doctor, could save your life! 

Screening  can: 

  • Find the warning signs of colon and rectal cancer, letting doctors take action to prevent the disease. 
  • Find colorectal cancer early, when treatment is most effective.

Source: Colorectal Cancer Alliance

Screenings at St. Cloud Surgical Center

Colonoscopies play an important role in colorectal cancer prevention. A colonoscopy is a minimally invasive, safe procedure used to evaluate the colon for cancer and other gastrointestinal symptoms, such as rectal and intestinal bleeding, abdominal pain, or changes in bowel habits. 

During your colonoscopy, you’ll receive sedation to minimize any discomfort. 

At St. Cloud Surgical Center, we use advanced, high-definition endoscopic equipment to screen the entire length of your colon. Should we detect any abnormal growths — called polyps — we’ll remove them and send them to the lab for analysis. 

We know this can seem overwhelming and, at times, scary, but there is nothing to fear when having a colonoscopy. If you’re still struggling with anxiety or fear, check out this blog post about Colonoscopy Myths to calm your nerves! 

How can I encourage others to be screened for CRC? 

You might be asking yourself, if colorectal cancer is highly preventable with screening and highly treatable when caught early, why is it the second deadliest cancer in the U.S.?

There are many answers to this question, but one reason is lack of awareness. Since the year 2000, groups like the Colorectal Cancer Alliance have been fighting for CRC awareness, and with the help of thousands of patients, survivors, caregivers, and advocates around the country they have been doing just that! 

Become an advocate by: 

  • Getting loud on Social Media. Follow @stcloudsurgicalcenter and @ColorectalCancerAlliance on Facebook to stay educated and share posts with family and friends. 
  • Wearing blue! Learn more about what the color blue means to the colorectal cancer community here
  • Talking to your loved ones. Express how much it means to them that they take care of their health, especially if they are on the fence and over the age of 45. 

For more information about colonoscopies at St. Cloud Surgical Center, fill out our easy Colonoscopy Screening Request form at the bottom of the page. No referral necessary! 




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