A major breakthrough for knee replacement surgery has recently been announced that could dramatically change the way surgical procedures are performed in the near future. The technology that I speak of is a robotic arm that has been labelled a “game changer”.
If the robotic arm is rolled out across clinics and hospitals around the world, knee replacement surgery will no longer be a major operation that requires months of agonizing physiotherapy and rehabilitation. Instead, the robotic technology assists surgeons, performing knee replacement surgery, by allowing for superior accuracy and precise placement.
How Will The Patients Be Affected?
Amazingly, of the robotically-assisted knee replacements that have been performed so far, some patients have been back on their feet and almost pain-free the day after their surgery. One patient spoke of how his knee grew so painful he could barely manage to get out of bed. So, after already suffering one knee replacement and the intense rehab that followed, he was scheduled for another knee replacement but this time, it was to be robotically-assisted. The results were amazing and he was back on his feet and playing golf just two days after surgery.
How Does It Work?
Before a patient goes into surgery, a 3D model of the knee joint is taken using a CAT scan to use with the robotic arm, which is then controlled and guided around the joint by the surgeon. This allows the surgeon to resurface the damaged sections with metal and plastic whilst preserving as much of the healthy bone and tissue as possible; something that would be impossible for human hands alone.
What Are The Benefits?
Patients undergoing this type of surgery will not have to suffer from the traumas associated with traditional knee surgery. This includes:
- Having a rod driven into the bone to serve as an anchor
- The risk of dangerous emboli forming due to tissue and bone damage
- Several weeks to months of physiotherapy and rehabilitation
- Extreme pain and discomfort