Clinical Research

University Hospitals Joint Replacement Division Advances Patient Care Through Clinical Research

The Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland is the largest medical research institution in Ohio and among the nation’s top medical schools for research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Research is a fundamental part of the Total Joint Replacement Division at University Hospitals Department of Orthopaedics. Research in our division not only has enhanced the quality of our work, but the work of surgeons across the world. In fact, our joint replacement surgeons have been recognized nationally and internationally for their outstanding clinical results.

To help patients who need total joint replacements, faculty members and physicians are involved in research in all areas of orthopedics, including:

  • Surgical techniques
  • Medications
  • Diagnostics
  • Technologies

Forefront of Joint Replacement Research

The Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine has been at the forefront of joint replacement research and innovations over the past several decades. The work done in our labs has helped orthopedic surgeons around the world in the development of new implants, new internal fixation devices for bone fractures and more durable orthopedic materials. Today, joints are being replaced with smaller incisions, using longer-lasting implant devices.

Center for Evaluation of Implant Performance

Faculty members within the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine are currently involved in research to advance performance of joint replacement implants. Our physicians help to determine why joint implants failed through their scientific study at The Center for Evaluation of Implant Performance, one of the largest implant retrieval programs in the U.S. The center has received more than $10 million in NIH funding over the last decade and has expanded its work to include nearly a dozen other leading academic medical centers and universities in the U.S.

This program is an internationally recognized collaboration between the Division of Joint Reconstruction and Arthritis Surgery at UH Cleveland Medical Center and the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) at Case Western Reserve University.

Joint Replacement Registry

Information on all joint replacement implants retrieved at UH Cleveland Medical Center is linked to a computerized clinical registry of all patients who have undergone hip or knee replacement surgery at UH Cleveland Medical Center since 1985. This extensive clinical research database is an important part of the CWRU/UHCMC Center for Evaluation of Implant Performance, providing clinical data on both failed, and perhaps more importantly, on successful implants and procedures.

Refinement of Implants

The future holds continued refinement of implants to improve total joint replacements and includes:

  • New materials
  • Minimally invasive surgical techniques
  • State-of-the-art computer navigation systems in the operating room

Improving outcomes for our patients depends on the quality of care and the level of innovation in our clinical research. We believe this balance of excellent clinical care and research has earned the Total Joint Replacement Division its outstanding reputation.

Advances in Research

The Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine Orthopaedic Journalhighlights some of the exciting research being conducted in our department. UH Innovations in Orthopedics allows us to share the outstanding achievements of the clinicians and scientists at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine’s Department of Orthopaedic Surgery.

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