Brigue Haut-Valais Orthopaedic Surgery Department

Dr Andreas Ottersbach
Senior Consultant, Head of Department

Specialty: minimally invasive implantation of artificial limbs using computer-assisted navigation, orthopaedics and traumatology of the musculoskeletal system

Dr Erhard Markiefka
Senior Consultant

Specialty: hand surgery, orthopaedics and traumatology of the musculoskeletal system

Dr Ferdinand Krappel, Senior Consultant

Specialty: spinal column, orthopaedics and traumatology of the musculoskeletal system

Dr Claus Cremer

Orthopaedics and traumatology of the musculoskeletal system, certified sports teacher

The innovative Orthopaedics Department in Brig is headed by Dr Ottersbach, and employs three senior consultants with extremely wide-ranging orthopaedic and traumatological training. Each doctor provides specialist consultations in his own practice. To increase the quality of the care we provide, each senior consultant is responsible for a specific specialist area.

The specialty of Senior Consultant Dr Krappel is the functional and conservative treatment of back pain. This covers almost the entire current range of functional treatments. In addition, he offers an interdisciplinary assessment of back pain.

Senior Consultant Dr Markiefka is a hand surgeon, and is responsible in this capacity for the secondary treatment of traumatological cases, e.g. for plastic reconstructions of the hand. In addition, Dr Markiefka also carries out numerous surgical interventions on the feet.

Senior Consultant Dr Ottersbach focuses in particular on the particularly tissue-conserving, i.e. minimally invasive, implantation of artificial knee and hip joints.

The senior consultants are supported by Consultant Dr Cremer, who carried out part of his training in Thun, in the Inselspital, and in Freiburg. Dr Cremer intends to focus in particular on sports medicine in future.
The registrars, Dr Ferschl, Dr Pankert, Dr Albrecht and Dr Brandenburg, and various junior doctors who rotate between Brig and Visp, complete the team of orthopaedic doctors.   

Arthroscopic interventions on the major limbs, including the shoulders, are carried out by all surgeons. Arthroscopic operations on the hips are also well-established procedures.  

An assistant is assigned to every senior consultant, making for excellent training conditions. The Orthopaedics Department in Brig Hospital is recognised by the FMH as a Category B 2 further training centre (two years for Orthopaedics and one year for Traumatology).
Specialist consultations are available for patients with acute joint problems, in order to shorten waiting times for arthroscopic interventions. In addition, acute orthopaedic cases can be notified to the secretariat.

For our inpatients, using the most up-to-date computer navigation systems and current minimally invasive techniques allows us to reach a high operational standard. We can be particularly precise in implementing the planned positions of artificial limbs or axial corrections. In addition, we stock special endoprostheses for specific age ranges and types of activity. These are implanted using minimally invasive techniques, thus protecting the patient’s tissue.

All of these factors contribute to faster recovery for patients. The Orthopaedics Department in Brig is the first department in Switzerland which has implemented the so-called rapid recovery concept (rapid recovery in the field of hip and knee endoprosthetics), and which has also presented its excellent results in international conferences, most recently in London and Leipzig.

Thanks to its experience with modern minimally invasive implantation techniques, with navigation and with the process optimisation of holistic treatment pathways, the Orthopaedics Department acts as an international reference clinic in these fields and is regularly visited by guest doctors from Switzerland and beyond.     

Its wide range of surgical procedures includes:

  • Endoprothestic treatment including revision surgery on the hip, knee and shoulder joints
  • The use of modern navigation devices and minimally invasive techniques for the implantation of artificial knee and hip joints, and also for the spinal column
  • Arthroscopic and open procedures on the shoulder, elbow, hand, hip, knee and ankle joints, including stabilising and preservative meniscus surgery, navigation-assisted or imaging-based cruciate ligament reconstruction and cartilage transplants
  • Special hand surgery and operations in cases of foot deformities
  • Complex back surgery using the most up-to-date surgical and diagnostic techniques available, including intraoperative CT diagnosis

Direct post-operative treatment is provided in the highly efficient, up-to-date and well-equipped Physiotherapy Department. Inpatient rehabilitation can be provided in the Geriatric Department in Brig Hospital, under the supervision of the surgeons, at the patient’s request and subject to agreement with the patient’s health insurance.