LOUISVILLE, Ky. — In a robotic-assisted knee procedure, your surgeon operates with assistance from a robot that is preprogrammed with the precise details of your anatomy to install a new artificial knee with more accuracy.
“Robotics allows you to dial in and fine-tune the position of the knee replacement to keep balance and to restore the normal anatomy of the knee,” said Dr. Jeffrey Stimac, an orthopedic surgeon with the Norton Orthopedic Institute.
Norton Orthopedic Institute is the first in the Louisville area to use the ROSA Knee System. Before a robotic-assisted knee replacement, x-rays will be used to create a 3D model of your existing knee, allowing surgeons to plan specifics of the operation beforehand. During the surgery, the robot only moves at the surgeon’s direction. A camera and optical trackers in the robot can detect the most minute twitch or movement in your knee and adjust accordingly, helping ensure your surgeon’s plan is executed correctly.
“Think having a better aligned and better-balanced knee will hopefully get people recovering faster and off pain medication sooner,” said Stimac.
Stimac said that robotics has gained a lot of popularity in hip and knee replacements within the past five years, and he expects it to assist in more procedures in the future.
“When it comes to robotics and orthopedics, the applications become endless. Right now with ROSA, it’s knee replacements, but in the future, partial knee replacements and shoulder replacements,” he said.
Stimac said that some patients are a little apprehensive when they hear a robot will be involved with a procedure. He said the results of other surgeries and the reputations of the doctors help ease concerns those people have.
“They are comforted by the fact that it’s not the robot doing the operation. It is allowing us to improve what already is a good operation,” he added.
So far, the ROSA Knee System has assisted in over 20 procedures at Norton Orthopedics.