Computer-assisted Total Knee Arthroplasty (TKA) surgery is surgery that is performed with the aid of computer technology.
Computers can take the “guess work” out of surgery. It allows the surgery to be done with greater precision and accuracy.
Why is it important in knee replacement?
Many studies have shown that knee replacements that are performed well (for example, well-aligned and balanced) are likely to last longer and feel better. In addition, it can shorten the hospital stay and decrease recovery time. Computer-assisted surgery can help the surgeon align the patient’s bone and implants with a degree of accuracy not possible with the naked eye. It can also help in ligament balancing that can ensure better range of motion and a more natural functioning knee replacement.
What are other benefits of computer-assisted surgery?
Computer-assisted surgery increases the precision and accuracy, and gives the surgeon real-time feedback during the surgery. This procedure also decreases errors by alerting the surgeon to potential pitfalls before they are performed. It gives the surgeon the confidence to perform the surgery with precision and control.
Computer-assisted total knee replacement is very safe. Because surgeons who use computer-assisted surgery utilize instruments that do not disturb the marrow, it is believed that it is safer than traditional surgery. Moreover, it lead to less blood loss and may lead to the decrease in blood transfusion requirement after the surgery.
Does it take additional time to perform?
In hospitals where surgeons and OR staff embrace computer-assisted surgery, computer-assisted surgery adds, on average, an additional 10 -15 minutes to the procedure. Some surgeons perform computer-assisted surgery in less time than conventional procedures.
Is it necessary for all total knee replacements?
Many surgeons employ computers in patients with severe deformity or malalignment. Others believe that computer-assisted surgery is helpful in all patients, not just difficult ones. Precision and accuracy is beneficial in all patients.
Are all surgeons trained in computer-assisted surgery?
It is more time consuming than standard surgery and requires trained OR personnel. Moreover, many hospitals are reluctant to spend the money to purchase expensive computer technology. With the added OR time, personnel training and technology costs, it is difficult for many facilities to offer this procedure.
Can computer-assisted surgery be performed through smaller incisions?
Computer-assisted surgery allows the Dr. Backe the opportunity to “see” more with the aid of the computer. It is a perfect partner to smaller incision procedure. Since the surgery is performed with greater accuracy, the patient can reap the benefit of less invasive procedure without sacrificing precision of the procedure.