JFK Medical Center Performs First Live Broadcast Surgery

Dr. Howard Routman, a shoulder specialist at JFK Medical Center’s Main Campus and president of Atlantis Orthopaedics in Palm Beach County, recently performed the hospital’s first live surgery.

One of only a select few surgeons to specialize in reverse shoulder replacement in South Florida, Routman performed South Florida’s first reverse shoulder replacement in 2003, as a part of an FDA trial, prior to the approval of the procedure as an implant by the FDA in 2004.

A unique and specialized procedure, reverse shoulder replacement surgery replaces the shoulder joint in situations when the rotator cuff is not functioning well. This procedure has proven to be reliable and effective.

Routman’s live surgery utilized computer-assisted navigation equipment by Exactech, also known as Guided Personalized Surgery (GPS). GPS allows surgeons to perform the operation first on the computer, allowing critical decisions to be made during the virtual surgery.

Then, utilizing the navigation equipment in the operating room, the surgeon is able to reproduce the virtual surgery with a very high level of precision, down to a millimeter.

Lasting 45 minutes from start to finish, over 200 shoulder specialists were able to view the surgery live, including real-time moderation from Dr. Joseph Zuckerman, chief of orthopaedic surgery at the Hospital for Joint Disease at NYU’s Langone Medical Center, and Dr. Thomas Wright, head of shoulder reconstruction at the University of Florida via Current Concepts broadcasting.

“As a shoulder specialist and researcher, I have spent a lot of time researching, publishing and speaking about reverse shoulder replacements,” Routman said. “After completing a specialized fellowship in shoulder reconstruction in 2000, and learning these specialized techniques from my mentor, Dr. George McCluksey III, I have performed over a thousand shoulder replacements. I have also been involved in the design and development of shoulder replacement implants in the U.S., as well as medical education all around the world.”

A Center of Excellence for Shoulder Replacement Surgery, JFK Medical Center is the only hospital in South Florida to have this unique GPS technology, which allows for the most precise techniques available in the world for shoulder replacement surgery, as well as optimal outcomes.

“As a teaching facility, JFK is so excited to be part of this growing movement. To have the opportunity to provide specialized surgeries to patients with little down time, the highest quality outcomes and to provide education to our future doctors in real time, is truly amazing,” CEO Gina Melby said.