Arthritis is a chronic disease and does not have any cure. However, technological advancements have helped millions worldwide. If you suffer from extreme pain due to osteoarthritis, robotic knee replacement surgery with relief and has a short recovery time.
In a knee replacement surgery, the impaired tissue of the knee is replaced with an artificial joint. In a robotic knee replacement surgery, the same surgeries are done with the help of a robotic arm. Though it may sound a little futuristic, it has been successful in the industry for a while.
Here is a list of 7 things you should know about robotic knee replacement surgery:
- Candidates for robotic knee replacement surgery:
The requirement for knee replacement with robotics is the same as the traditional one. The doctor would first go for less invasive methods like anti-inflammatory medication, cortisone doses, physical therapy, weight loss and knee braces. Knee replacement is a suitable option if you don’t get relief from these methods. Surgery is not a good option for patients above the age of 60.
Robotic knee replacement places the implant precisely, ensuring a higher success rate. Still, joint replacement is not a permanent solution and discuss it with your doctor while considering it.
- The surgery is done by robots:
On hearing about robotic assisted knee replacement, people are misguided by the name and think it is done by robots. The surgery is done under the supervision of an orthopaedic surgeon. The robot arm helps in higher accuracy. Before the surgery, a CT scan helps obtain a 3D model of the knees. It helps the surgeon during the surgery to avoid damage to other tissues.
- Lesser recovery time:
Robotic total knee replacement has a relatively shorter recovery period. Since it is still relatively new in the healthcare field, enough benefits are not yet known. The recovery time for a patient of traditional knee replacement to resume daily life activities is 4 to 6 weeks. With robotic knee surgery, it is reduced by 50%. The reason is smaller incisions hence lesser damage to the surrounding bone and tissues.
- Higher accuracy can improve recovery:
With the help of advancements, robotic knee surgery is more accurate. The surgeon can carry out the surgery by customising knee replacements per the patient’s anatomy. It gives the patient a more natural and real feeling in some cases.
After the surgery, most patients suffer from joint awareness. Under ideal circumstances, your knee replacement should not be felt at any time as you go about your daily life activities. However, in many cases, the patients face problems performing routine activities like walking down the stairs, bowing or sitting down. They tend to feel pain in the area, numbness and stiffness of the joint.
More studies are needed to check the extent to which joint awareness can be decreased with a robotic total knee replacement. However, doctors are optimistic about the precision and benefits of the use of robotic arms.
- Practical experience above all:
State-of-the-art robotic techniques have enhanced the results for the patients, but they can not replace the experience of an excellent orthopaedic surgeon. Whether you need a robotic partial knee replacement surgery or a complete one, you should still choose an orthopaedic surgeon who has vast knowledge and real-time experience.
- Potential risks:
Here is a list of risks in traditional as well as robotic knee surgery:
- Nerve damage
- The allergic reaction by the immunity system to the artificial joint.
- Deep vein thrombosis (blood clots formation)
With the help of robots, the surgery can be performed with higher accuracy, the rate of complications comes down. The chances of serious complications are quite rare. Only 2% of the patients get severe complications. The doctor would diagnose your condition properly before the surgery and discuss the potential risks and side effects that may happen during or after the surgery.
- More data is required: Though we have proven short term benefits of robotic assisted knee replacement, more information is needed to see the long term benefits of the higher accuracy obtained with this method.
If you want more information about partial or total knee replacement, visit Germanten Hospital. Our experts can also help you with an excellent robotic assisted total knee replacement.