Robotic surgery may sound like something straight out of a Sci-Fi movie, but it is very, very real. Not to mention sophisticated and very effective. Robotic (robot-assisted) surgery has been FDA-approved since 2000. Most robotic-assisted surgical procedures are minimally invasive, however, they are sometimes used in more traditional “open” procedures as well. Robotic knee surgeries, for instance, have proven to have less associated risks, less pain, have faster recovery times, and overall less pain and blood loss than other forms of knee surgery. Below is a helpful guide to robotic knee surgery.
What Happens During a Robotic Surgery?
During a robotic knee surgery, the patient is placed on the operating table and draped as usual. The patient’s knee will be left elevated and partially exposed. The anesthesiologist, along with any other doctors or assistants are near the patient. The robotic assistant overlooks the patient. The lead surgeon is seated at a computer terminal nearby, with a console which gives him a 3-D, magnified, and high definition view of the procedure.
His hand movements are translated to the robotic arms, which feature mechanical “wrists” that allow them to spin and move in ways that human hands cannot. Most robotic systems have multiple of these mechanical arms, fitted with sophisticated dime-sized surgical instruments. The robotic system also contains a slender high-resolution camera, which can be fed through surgical punctures that are roughly the diameter of a pencil, directly into the joint space of the knee.
By their very design, robotic arms offer more flexibility and are able to work in cramped spaces within the knee joint itself, via tiny incisions with great precision. Most surgeons report that the responsive robotic arms allow for greater control and finesse, even during delicate maneuvers. The tiny instruments can cut, sew, clip, smooth, and reshape knee components without needing to cut down through multiple layers of fat, muscle, connective tissues, blood vessels and nerves to reach the precise location of the underlying knee problem. If necessary, the surgeon can deftly guide the robotic arms to remove joint components, which can then be replaced by artificial versions.
The Benefits of a Robotic Assisted Knee Surgery:
- Minimally invasive option capable of repairing, removing, or replacing, diseased or damaged knee components
- Because the procedure is less traumatic for the body, recovery times are greatly enhanced
- Less overall patient discomfort with an expedited return to normal activities
- Lower risk of infections combined with reduced blood loss
Only a qualified orthopedic surgeon can determine if a robotic knee surgery is right for you. If you or someone you care about is facing a knee surgery or even a knee replacement, or to learn more about our advanced robotic knee surgical procedures, please call Movement Orthopedics today at (586) 436-3785 or request an appointment online.