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A joint effort


Being already member of the AO Alumni Association since 2003, of the Slovenian medical chamber since 1994 as well as a member and national delegate of the European Hip Society since 2009, he also joined the European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases in 2013. Proficient in Slovenian, English, Italian, Serb, Croatian and French, he did his fellowships in Minnesota and Switzerland.

Valdoltra Orthepedic Hospital, originally a general care hospital, became the Yugoslavian centre for treating bone tuberculosis and federal institute for treating scoliosis in the wake of World War II. “It is therefore the oldest specialized hospital in Slovenia,” Dr. Trebse points out. “And it is mostly a public medicine institution.” It later went through a long reconstruction process that lasted from 1951 to 1956.

“The decline of bone and joint tuberculosis was evident leading the way to orthopedics,” explains Dr. Trebse. Located in Slovenia but next to the Italian border, the majority of the 300 employees speak both languages, ensuring that the residents on both sides of the border are taken care of in a professional manner. Today, the orthopedic centre has modern diagnostic and only the best equipment.

The hospital has 190 beds within three pavilions, eight wards, five operating rooms and an outpatient clinic. “Our doctors and nurses are highly qualified,” assures Dr. Trebse. “We have 24 orthopaedic surgeons, five radiologists, seven anaesthesiologists as well as 150 nurses, 14 phisiotherapists, 14 radiological engineers, a clinical pharmacologist and many other important professionals.”

The number of patients is steadily growing. In 2011 Valdoltra Orthepedic Hospital performed about 4,011 surgeries in comparison to 4,500 in 2012. Those consisted of 900 artificial hip surgeries, 800 artificial knees, 250 to 300 spinal surgeries, 1,600 orthoscopic surgeries on shoulders and elbows, 250 foot and ankle and 70 prosthetic joint infection surgeries, resulting in a turnover of 19 million EUR. The main clinical activity is focused on orthopedics.

“Currently we are developing protocols and implementing treatment in a processional way,” explains Dr. Trebse. “These are quality healthcare control steps that ensure safe, professional and interdisciplinary care. We also started a department for researchers with the goal to better understand the prosthesis performance from several variables such as biological, material, clinical and mechanical aspects. The studies are mostly based on the hospitals arthroplasty registers, a valuable source of information for important data based analysis of these treatments.”

The hospital uses only the most innovative technologies and most highly qualified experts in the industry. Research has been a main focus since the late 1990s. “Our research is a clinical study which focuses on long term performance of different prostheses,” Dr. Trebse clarifies.

“The understanding of this comes from several aspects including mechanical, biological, material and obviously the clinical variable. The data based analysis of arthoplasty assures good results, long term follow up of clinical results. This research is mostly focused on the building of antibacterial coatings and make sure that they are mechanically and chemically stable to be used to cover the surface of the orthopedic implants. The implants are highly protected from severe bacterial infection and ensuring long term stability.”

As of late the most common surgeries by an amount of 75% have been joint replacements while spinal, arthroscopy, foot and ankle making up the other 25%. The hospital is well-known for being the leader in Slovenia and in some nearby markets such as the former Yugoslavia, Russia and even some of the Arabic countries. Around 5% of the patients are from those countries.

“Our strategy is to implement new methods in the fields of spinal surgery, arthroscopic procedures and prosthetic joints and reduce the duration of treatment and the rehabilitation process,” Dr. Trebse explains. “Paying attention to the protection of the patients’ integrity while introducing quality standards of medical treatment and care are also a priority. New trends and innovations are important as well as investing in quality human resources.”

The employees at Valdoltra have postgraduate educations and are able to operate technological equipment in progressive scientific research. “Close relationships with our partners on a national level is team work at its best and crucial for new breakthroughs in the future,” Dr. Trebse adds. “Sustainable development is to maintain a reputation set by loyal and professional predecessors. It is a proud tradition and a good example for future generations.”

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