Medical Services


Keeping our community healthy and active is critical part of North Ottawa Community Health System’s mission. Our orthopaedic surgery and rehabilitative services help keep people moving so they can actively enjoy the abundant quality of life our lakeshore community has to offer.

NOCHS is proud to offer Mako Robotic Arm-Assisted for joint replacement surgeries. This latest advancement in orthopaedics enables surgeons to provide each patient with a personalized surgical experience based on his or her specific diagnosis and anatomy. We offer Robotic technology for partial knee replacement, as well as total knee and hip replacements.

Hip and knee replacements are our specialty. Our orthopaedic surgery practice is among a select few in the region to perform anterior total hip replacements. This approach has faster recovery times, less pain and less risk of dislocation. Further, NOCHS was the first on the lakeshore to offer MRI-guided, custom total knee replacement with FDA-approved gender specific implants.

Total Hip Replacement

Joint replacement surgery is usually recommended when hip pain becomes debilitating, function is lost, and medicines and other treatments no longer relieve pain. There are two ways to approach this surgery – your orthopaedic surgeon can help determine which procedure is best for you.

Anterior Approach Hip Replacement is a minimally invasive, muscle-sparing technique for total hip replacement. This approach allows the surgeon to work around the muscles as opposed to cutting through them or detaching them from the bone. This provides potential benefits for patients who meet the criteria* for this procedure. Key benefits include:

• Less pain because the incision is in front and patients aren’t forced to sit on the incision site while recovering
• Faster recovery and improved mobility (fewer restrictions) because the tissue is experiences less trauma/damage during surgery
• Reduced scarring because of the smaller incision site
• Less risk of the implant dislocating post-operatively because the surrounding muscle tissue are not disturbed during surgery

*Patients who may not be good candidates for the anterior approach include those with advanced osteoporosis, those who have had a recent ankle fracture and those with conditions that could limit rehabilitation.

The Anterior Approach uses the same implants as traditional total hip replacement. However with Anterior Approach, the surgeon uses a small incision to reach the hip joint from the front of the hip joint (anterior) rather than the side (lateral) or back (posterior). This allows the hip implant to be placed without detachment of the muscle from the hip or thigh bone – potentially causing less tissue disruption, reduced pain and faster recovery.

Each patient is unique and recovery time can vary after hip replacement based on age, weight and activity level. Because it is less invasive, Anterior Approach replacement may allow patients to bend their hip, bear weight and return to normal activities more quickly than with traditional hip replacement.

Traditional Hip Replacement

The typical hip replacement procedure uses one of two approaches performed through similar incisions located on the upper thigh and buttock. One is called a posterior-lateral approach (posterior means rear) and the other is the anterior-lateral approach (anterior means front).

Total hip replacement surgery replaces the upper end of the thighbone (femur) with a metal ball and resurfaces the hip socket in the pelvic bone with a metal shell and plastic liner.
Total hip replacement surgery replaces damaged cartilage with new joint material in a step-by-step process.

Custom Total Knee Replacement

Total knee replacement is a surgical procedure to resurface worn out surfaces of the knee with metal and plastic components. Over time, cartilage that cushions joint bones can wear, cause discomfort and make simple activities like walking difficult. Knee replacement can reduce or eliminate pain, allow easier movement and help restore an active, independent life.

New techniques and materials for implants are providing patients greater relief from pain and better mobility with joint replacement surgery. Total Knee replacements now include gender-specific molds for a better fit and faster recovery. These are custom made by taking MRI images to create a mold specifically for your body.

Your surgeon will scan MRI and X-Ray images of your leg into an advanced, web-based software program. This generates virtual images of your knee. Surgical instruments and guides are then designed and built, mapping out specific bone cuts to accurately align the implants to your knee. Patient-matched instruments help the surgeon achieve more optimal implant alignment, custom to your unique knee anatomy.

This technology removes multiple steps from the traditional surgical technique. As a result, your time under anesthesia may be reduced. It also may result in less blood loss and a lower risk of infection.

Total Shoulder Replacement

Total shoulder replacement surgery is less common than total knee and hip replacements, but is just as effective in relieving joint pain. The surgery involves replacing damaged bone and cartilage with a metal and plastic implant. The shoulder joint is a ball-and-socket joint (much like the hip joint) that provides an enormous range of motion -- letting you move your arm forward, to the side and behind you. The ball is the top of the arm bone, and the socket is within the shoulder blade.

When shoulder replacement surgery is performed, the ball is removed from the top of the humerus and replaced with a metal implant. This is shaped like a half-moon and attached to a stem inserted down the center of the arm bone. The socket portion of the joint is shaved clean and replaced with a plastic socket that is cemented into the scapula.

To find a Grand Haven Orthopaedic Surgeon click here on our find a doc section of our website and search Orthopaedics.

Orthopedic Services at NOCHS are a Blue Distinction Center* for knee and hip replacements.

* Blue Distinction Centers (BDC) met overall quality measures, developed with input from the medical community. A Local Blue Plan may require additional criteria for providers located in its own service area; for details, contact your Local Blue Plan. Blue Distinction Centers+ (BDC+) also met cost measures that address consumers’ need for affordable healthcare. Each provider’s cost of care is evaluated using data from its Local Blue Plan. Providers in CA, ID, NY, PA, and WA may lie in two Local Blue Plans’ areas, resulting in two evaluations for cost of care; and their own Local Blue Plans decide whether one or both cost of care evaluation(s) must meet BDC+ national criteria. National criteria for BDC and BDC+ are displayed on Individual outcomes may vary. For details on a provider’s in-network status or your own policy’s coverage, contact your Local Blue Plan and ask your provider before making an appointment. Neither Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association nor any Blue Plans are responsible for non-covered charges or other losses or damages resulting from Blue Distinction or other provider finder information or care received from Blue Distinction or other providers.