New Institute for Computer Assisted Orthopaedic Surgery welcomes Anthony M. DiGioia III as director

Pittsburgh 21 May 2001Renowned orthopaedic surgeon, Anthony M. DiGioia III, M.D., has been named director of the newly created Institute for Computer Assisted Orthopaedic Surgery at the Western Pennsylvania Hospital. The Institute will be the only comprehensive centre in the region which combines computer assisted orthopaedic surgery research for total joint replacement with high quality, patient-focused clinical programmes, as well as a clinical outcomes programme based on the Total Joint Registry.

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Dr. DiGioia is a pioneer in the development of computer assisted surgical technology, and equally is a senior research scientist and co-director of the Center for Medical Robotics and Computer Assisted Surgery at the Carnegie Mellon University. The surgeon and his team will continue the partnership with the robotics, engineering and computer science faculty, and students at Carnegie Mellon in order to develop the next generation of surgical tools and techniques to make joint replacement surgery still more accurate and less invasive.

A major focus of the new institute will be the formation of a patient-centred programme for total joint replacement which addresses patient needs from diagnosis and education up to treatment and to follow-up care. "The application of computer technology represents a novel and exciting area of development in medicine and Western Pennsylvania Hospital is committed to bringing the benefits of cutting-edge technology to our patients", stated James M. Collins, president and chief executive officer of the Western Pennsylvania Hospital.

Charles M. O'Brien, president and chief executive officer of the West Penn Allegheny Health System, commented: "Dr. DiGioia's expertise further establishes the West Penn Allegheny Health System as a significant provider for orthopaedic care." The newly created Institute for Computer Assisted Orthopaedic Surgery at the Western Pennsylvania Hospital will be located in renovated space on the second floor of the hospital's Mellon Pavilion, adjacent to the offices of Renaissance Orthopaedics, which was founded by Dr. DiGioia.

Researchers at the Robotics Institute have been working in the medical field since 1993, the year in which Dr. Anthony DiGioia, Dr. Takeo Kanade, and Helen Whitaker, University Professor of Computer Science and Director of the Robotics Institute, co-founded Carnegie Mellon's Center for Medical Robotics and Computer Assisted Surgery. "Carnegie Mellon University is committed to research in the important area of medical robotics", explained Dr. Kanade. "Dr. DiGioia and I have had a tremendously productive collaboration in developing medical robotic technologies. We look forward to continuing our work."

Over the years, Drs. DiGioia, Kanade and their colleagues have shared in the development of HipNav, a computer-navigation system for hip replacement surgery. They also have made breakthroughs in medical image processing, including the unique design of a three-dimensional image overlay system, as well as in microsurgery. Dr. DiGioia, founder of Renaissance Orthopaedics, will continue his private practice, with offices at the Western Pennsylvania Hospital.

Dr. DiGioia received a bachelor of science degree and master's degree in civil and biomedical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and graduated with Honours in a Special Field from Harvard Medical School. He completed an internship in general surgery and a residency in orthopaedic surgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, and completed a fellowship in adult reconstructive surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He is board certified in orthopaedic surgery and a fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and American College of Surgeons.

In addition, Dr. DiGioia is president of the International Society for CAOS, Computer Assisted Orthopaedic Surgery, as well as the founder of the CAOS USA conference series, which will hold its next annual meeting in Pittsburgh in July. Dr. DiGioia also is the co-chair of the Pittsburgh Regional Health care Initiative's Total Joint Replacement Working Group. More details about the pioneering research performed by Dr. DiGioia's team can be found in the VMW articles on HipNav and the 3D image overlay system.


Leslie Versweyveld

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