The New Frontier Of Total Knee Replacement
Suffering from knee pain for years on end is no fun. Movement is limited, the pain is sometimes unbearable, and certain physical activities are out of the question. An orthopedic surgeon or doctor may suggest a total knee replacement (TKR). Over 600,000 Americans have received TKR which removes damaged cartilage and bone to install prosthetics. The doctor may also mention the possibility of robotic-assisted surgery. This relatively new technique can provide incredible benefits to doctors and patients alike.
How robotics and surgery go hand-in-hand
With robotic-assisted surgery, a mechanical arm with special tools at the end helps the doctor perform the surgery. The robotic arm combines 3D imaging technology and infrared to map out the best replacement for the patient. The doctor can then perform the surgery with robot-assisted guidance. The robot arm does not act independently but is an extension of the surgeon’s capabilities. However, hospitals and clinics with the resources to invest in the use of advanced surgical practices have seen a great return on their investment. Furthermore, patients receive both direct and indirect advantages.
Customized replacements for each patient
One of the challenges for surgeons is the installation of prosthetics. Each patient’s knee is shaped differently, if only by a few millimeters. The surgeon must remove enough cartilage, get the size correct, and install the prosthetic in the right spot. Robotic surgery helps this process significantly. The robot first maps out a 3D image of the knee and prosthetic down to the nearest millimeter. This step gives each patient a prosthetic that’s fitted to the exact specifications. As a result, patients will have less post-operative pain and a longer-lasting prosthetic.
A focus on speed and accuracy
Surgeons perform robotic surgery using minimally invasive means. Instead of a large incision, the surgeon uses 2 or 3 buttonhole incisions to insert the tools. That means less blood and faster surgery. Robotic surgery improves the speed and accuracy of minimally invasive surgery even more. Since the robot already measured the replacement and location, the surgeon has increased control. The machine tells the surgeon about any mistakes and will signal when the prosthetic is in the exact spot. Removing the chance for errors means the patient is out of the operating room faster.
Studies show that robotic surgery can provide a faster recovery rate than other surgical procedures. With the prosthetic in the right place, patients report less pain in just 2 weeks after surgery. There is also less blood loss and chances of infection. Robotic surgery may provide up to 50% faster recovery time. That means patients can resume activities faster.
Long-term success rate
In the long run, minimally invasive robotic surgery has excellent satisfaction rates. Prosthetics are expected to last at least 10-15 years. Robotic surgery may expand these figures even further. With the prosthetics installed with pinpoint accuracy, the chances of failure reduce significantly.
Let technology support your knee replacement
Knee replacements are an excellent way to stop arthritis or other long-term damage that’s impacting movement. Surgery can create anxiety and uncertainty. However, robotic-assisted surgery significantly improves the outcome. With incredible accuracy and speed, robotic surgery gets patients out of the operating room faster. Furthermore, patients have a faster recovery and long-term success. Speak with an orthopedic surgeon or surgical center to see if robotic-assisted surgery is available.