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Friday, March 23, 2018

Kyle Vuille photoKyle Vuille photo

GMC celebrates orthopedic surgeon hitting his 100th joint replacement (slideshow 2)

By Kyle Vuille

Ranger-Review Staff Writer

On Jan. 19, Glendive Medical Center hosted an open house to celebrate Dr. Eric Sigmond’s 100th joint surgery at the medical center.

The event was planned when orthopedic surgeon Sigmond hit his 100th surgery, but as of this past Friday he was actually up to 112.

As a young man Sigmond originally was exposed to the profession through his father and older brother, but said he initially was resistant to the career because it felt it would be too competitive.

He originally tried his hand at engineering, but found it wasn’t his calling. However, he now recognizes how engineering applies to the human body in his career now.

“I always liked physics and its application to the human biology,” Sigmond said.

Sigmond attended Yale University for undergrad in molecular biology and biophysics and graduated in 1973. Following his time at Yale, he got doctorate in anatomy at Loyola University in Chicago in 1978.

He stayed in the Chicago area for his orthopedic residency at Northwestern Hospital and left in 1983 to work at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. where he received special training in total joint surgery. 

Sigmond eventually made his way back to Chicago where he worked for a number of years. 

“The reason I came out West was I was burnt out and I didn’t even know it, and I wasn’t the most pleasant guy to be around because of it,” Sigmond said.

After throwing in the towel in the Windy City, he said he visited a practice in Spearfish, S.D. and liked it and moved his family of four there in 2004.

Following his time in Spearfish, where he felt he had become a hostile environment for practitioners, he moved to Glendive in 2014.

Sigmond has stayed busy at GMC and found an unmatched love for the Glendive community where he finds his work to find more meaningful than ever before.

“I feel like I’m really filling a need instead of competing with a hundred other doctors with the latest marketing ploy,” Sigmond said. “I’m here helping people and staying busy.”

He added he has access to other practitioners in the same field if he ever has questions concerning a surgery that falls under any sub-specialization. He can find out what the latest thinking is concerning a certain operation or procedure.

Sigmond said with the Baby Boomer generation at the age where knee problems arise, he finds himself doing more knees than hips or shoulders, but he enjoys all of his work.

“I’ve had someone say to me, ‘People here are good folks and they deserve a good doctor,’” Sigmond said.

When Sigmond isn’t at the operating table, he enjoys golfing and skiing.

“If I ever find the time, I like building model airplanes, playing the piano, guitar and the ukulele,” he added.

But even when he doesn’t have time for outside activities, he still feels fulfilled.

“Helping patients gives my life meaning,” he added.


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