Total Knee Replacement (TKR) surgery is one of the most significant advancements of the 20th century in orthopaedic surgery.
With rapid improvement in technology, computer navigation is being increasingly used in knee replacement surgeries, where it helps overcome the drawbacks of conventional TKR surgery.
Joint replacement surgery is the last step in treatment for severe arthritis and is most commonly performed in the hip and knee. When a joint replacement surgery is performed, it is crucial that the components of the implanted prosthesis are properly positioned.
Computer- Assisted Surgery (CAS) helps the surgeon in accurately positioning these components. Similar to an autopilot which assists the pilots or a GPRS that aids the sailors to reach their destination easily and safely, CAS helps the surgeon to achieve the desired accuracy during TKR.
CAS uses special probes attached to the thigh and leg bones that are detected by an infrared camera connected to the computer. The computer subsequently constructs an electronic model of the knee based on the information fed by the surgeon,
Which is unique for each and every patient’s knee. The computer can then guide the surgeon in achieving proper positioning of the implants.
Is proper positioning of implants crucial?
While you may not realize it, one of the most critical aspects of a joint replacement surgery is ensuring proper positioning of the implants. An incorrectly aligned implant can lead to early wear and loosening of the replaced joint.
In an effort to prevent this, surgeons are constantly searching for ways to ensure that the implants are properly positioned. CAS is one additional check to confirm proper placement of the implants.
Most patients are concerned about the type of implant when considering TKR, however, probably the most important consideration should be is, how well these implants are positioned.
The alignment of the lower limb is as important as that of the implant alignment in TKR. CAS helps the surgeon in getting the desired limb alignment in each and every case.
Just like the early wear of poorly aligned wheels in car, a poorly aligned limb will causes early wear and loosening of the replaced knee joint.
• Accurate restoration of gap balance, joint line and posterior femoral offset improves functional results after knee replacement surgery. • Knee arthritis with complex extra-articular deformities and in situ hardware can be tackled appropriately using CAS where conventional techniques may be inadequate. • In obese patients where limb alignment is difficult to assess, CAS improves accuracy and reduces the number of outliers. • Low incidence of cardiopulmonary complications • Less blood loss • Early functional recovery.