If you suffer from a form of arthritis, your doctor may recommend a robotic knee replacement. An evolving technique that has become increasingly common since 2008, robotic knee replacement uses high-precision computer-controlled instruments to replace the weight-bearing surfaces of the knee joint.
Dr David Slattery has extensive experience performing both traditional and robotic knee replacements and is able to advise patients on the most suitable approach for their condition. For the purposes of helping patients make the most informed choice for their health, Dr Slattery has prepared this article highlighting the benefits of robotic knee replacement and the conditions under which it may be considered as an option.
What does robot knee replacement offer over traditional techniques?
Robotic knee replacement offers several advantages over traditional techniques, with these benefits realised throughout the treatment process. At the diagnostic stage – when coupled with a CT scan – these technologies allow doctors to create a three-dimensional model of the patient’s knee, allowing them to select and position the prosthesis to better match your anatomy.
During the operation, the robotic surgical system enables more precise removal of diseased bone, reducing the risk of surgical error and allowing better alignment of the prosthesis with your existing anatomy. When conducted by an experienced professional trained in the use of the system, the result is often a better fitting prosthesis. As several studies have shown that component positioning is a key factor in the survival of a knee replacement, use of this system can reduce the need for revisions and enhance component longevity, with the majority surviving over 15 years. Robot-assisted surgical techniques are used for both total and partial knee replacements.
Who can benefit from robotic knee replacement surgery?
While many Australians struggle with knee pain and arthritis, not every patient will be a candidate for robotic knee replacement. Dr Slattery’s preference is always to pursue conservative, non-operative treatment options prior to considering surgery – where a patient’s arthritis fails to respond to these treatments, robotic knee replacement may be discussed.
Additionally, patients who have previously undergone knee surgery and require revision, or presenting with severe deformity of the knee as a result of advanced arthritis may be a candidate for robotic knee replacement surgery, but the extent of the deformity will determine the nature of surgery.
Due to the increased precision of the operation and the greater potential for customisation of approach and implant, Dr Slattery sees robotic knee replacement surgery as offering significant advantages to suitable patients. If you would like to discuss whether robotic knee replacement is appropriate for your condition, contact Dr Slattery’s rooms to make an appointment.