Computer Navigated knee Joint Replacement: Precision at no Extra cost
Total knee joint replacement surgery has been evolving over the years. Knee joint replacement fails only in those patients in which either they were not aligned properly or were not balanced adequately. Traditional total Knee Replacement is done using alignment jigs and cutting blocks. Previously the surgeon used eyeballing to make bony cuts and ligament balancing. Computer navigation uses a software that helps the surgeon to outline the deformity, plan accordingly and perform bone cuts and ligament balancing with absolute precision.
Figure: shows how navigation helps in defining the proximal tibia and distal femoral cuts using navigation
It also helps in sizing the appropriate size of the component so that it fits best. Computer navigation also helps to fit the components in its proper rotation as well. This results in a well balanced and well aligned knee joint, which obviously lasts longer. The surgeon knows, on the operation table that the deformity has been fully corrected and the range of motion which the patient is going to achieve post-operatively. Smaller incision (minimally invasive), less blood loss, faster rehabilitation (patient can stand on day of surgery) are other advantages of computer navigated total knee replacement.
To understand the role of navigation in Total knee replacement, let me give you a similie. Earlier people used to stitch clothes with thread and needle, but now they use sewing machines. The machine made stitching easier and precise. The same is the role of computer navigation in Total knee replacement. It has made a good surgery better.