Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Ronald Hillock offers amputees new hope for continuing careers.
(Las Vegas) National Disability Employment Awareness Month pays tribute to the accomplishments of working people with disabilities throughout October. Orthopedic surgery specialist Dr. Ronald Hillock is one of eight doctors in the world to perform a revolutionary new procedure, Osseointegration (OI), allowing amputees greater mobility and comfort to continue to work.
The effort to educate the public about the issues related to disability and employment began when Congress enacted Public Law 176 in 1945 and declared the first week of October each year as National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week. Years later, Congress declared October as National Disability Employment Awareness Month.
Dr. Hillock, attending surgeon arthroplasty and limb salvage at Nevada Orthopedic and Spine, became an expert in the procedure, is the only doctor in Nevada who performs OI and trains other physicians as well.
“The basic concept provides a big improvement for someone with an above the knee (transfemoral) amputation. The majority of these patients are uncomfortable wearing a section suction-style prosthesis,” explains Dr. Hillock.
The surgery involves an implant being inserted into an amputee’s femur integrating it with the bone. The procedure has been proven to be a quick and safe connection between the stump and the lower prosthesis. OI creates a structural and functional connection between living bone and an artificial implant, which bears the amputee’s weight.
Jeffrey Ladouceur, a patient of Dr. Hillock who underwent surgery, can now return to work. “Using OI, it is the closest to having my leg back. I am active and looking forward to going back to work in construction,” says Ladouceur.
As a veteran, Dr. Hillock is working with the Department of Defense and the United States Department of Veterans Affairs system to bring the procedure to other veterans so they can also become employed and have a better quality of life.
According to the Amputee Coalition of America, there are an estimated 2 million amputees in the US, with the numbers expected to double by 2050. Dr. Hillock works with amputees continuing his goal for everyone to have the opportunity to be employed.
ABOUT NEVADA ORTHOPEDIC AND SPINE CENTER ADULT RECONSTRUCTION
Nevada Orthopedic & Spine Center provides comprehensive orthopedic care in Southern Nevada for over 20 years. Dr. Hillock is the attending surgeon arthroplasty and limb salvage at the center. Treatments offered include immediate, chronic, pediatric, or work-related injuries. Its fellowship-trained and board-certified orthopedic surgeons focus on a wide range of specialties to fit the patient’s individual needs in all areas of orthopedic medicine. For more information, visit nevadaorthopedic.com.