SPECIAL REPORT: Oh my aching feet


EDGEFIELD, S.C. (WJBF) – Do you suffer from foot pain? If so, you are not alone.

One type of foot problem can knock you off your feet. But thanks to a new procedure, some patients are up and running in half the time.

“This is the only place in the CSRA where this procedure is being done.”

Dr. George Sich is talking about a patented procedure called Lapiplasty, a surgical treatment for painful bunions.

“In the past, we broke the bone and shifted it back into position which is a very uncomfortable procedure.”

This new procedure by Trease Medical concepts doesn’t break the bone.

“We’re able to shift the metatarsal in three different directions,” says Dr. Sich, “Up, down, left and right and into a rotation motion into a position it needs to be in and we put some plates and screws in to hold everything together without breaking the bone.”

The procedure is performed at Edgefield County hospital.

The CEO of the hospital had the surgery six weeks ago.

Today he’s walking the hospital halls with ease.

Carlos Milanes had a similar procedure on the other foot several years back but due to the long recovery time, waited until now to get his right foot repaired.

“A week after the surgery I was walking and I feel great and I’m healing well,” says Milanes. “Soon I’ll be able to run again, which is my passion. I’ve not been able to do that for years so I am looking forward to that.”

Joanne Ellis is looking forward to hitting the links.

She misses golf and her workouts at the gym.

Her bunion made it difficult to even find a shoe that would fit over the deformity.

“Eventually it got to where I could only wear wide box sneakers because of the pain under the foot as well as the bunion itself,” says Ellis. “It was time I had to take care of it.”

Ellis decided to travel from Aiken to Edgefield County where Dr. Sich performs the operation.

Her husband says he’s glad she did.

“The individual attention you get can’t be beat.”

Edgefield County hospital hopes the word spreads.

Like other rural hospitals in America, keeping the doors open is a challenge.

Just a few outpatient surgeries here each month could have a positive effect on this facility’s bottom line.

“We have one OR, we do outpatient procedures, and we give 100% attention to the surgeon and to the patient and that’s important.”

If you need a second opinion, just ask Dr. Fich.

“Edgefield County hospital has the personnel, it has the resources that I need to do this procedure. You wouldn’t think it, but it’s here.”

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