Technology is changing our lives continuously. Although total knee and hip replacement surgery is highly successful in our hand, yet we strive for technological advances that can make it better in terms of patient satisfaction, minimizing complications and further improving our functional results.
Over a period of time many advances were introduced successfully in knee & hip replacement surgery like Gender specific knee, newer materials like Oxinium in knee & hip replacement surgery are some examples.
Now you have Computers (Computer Navigation) to assist surgeons during the surgery to minimize errors. The other thing is minimally invasive total knee replacement surgery, where I can perform a surgery through a very small incision without compromising on the accuracy of knee replacement and also without damaging the most important muscle i.e. Quadriceps (Quad sparing).
The new thing on the block is Patient Specific Implants for Knee Replacement surgery. This technology gives us bone-cutting guides made after creating a computerized virtual model of patient knee based on MRI & Long Leg standing X-rays. They are very specific to a patient and his knees and provide us precision that we are looking for during the surgery.
Joint replacement surgery is a combination of precision and surgical skills. The most important aspect of knee replacement surgery is to accurately restore the mechanical alignment of the leg. Computer navigation improves component position and alignment after knee replacement; thereby it is expected to further improve the results.
The use of such a technology has certain additional benefits. Not only does the computer guide the accurate bony cuts, but they can also be carried out with a small incision, which is called 'minimally invasive surgery' (MIS). Computer navigation also reduces the risk of complications by providing constant guidance and monitoring during the surgery.
However, there are few disadvantages of Computer Navigation. Technology is expensive and has long learning curve. If the bone mapping is not done accurately then there is high chances of error in the component final position.