Each year, approximately 600,000 total knee replacement procedures are performed in
"This innovative technology allows us to deliver a more personalized knee to the patient and provide extreme accuracy in implant placement. Studies have shown that total knee replacement surgery has a higher failure rate when the knee is mal-aligned. This device enables orthopedic surgeons to restore a patient's normal alignment with precision in a reproducible fashion, decreasing revision surgery and providing a more natural feel of the implant for the patient," said
Current robotic and computer-assisted systems are less efficient and rely upon additional equipment, such as a large computer monitor in the operating room. The new device, about two inches wide, is the only piece of equipment needed to guide surgeons during a knee replacement. There are other patient-specific instruments available, said Gonzales, but the patient must undergo additional procedures, such as computed tomography (CT) scans or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) prior to surgery.
"The iASSIST system allows us to bypass additional imaging and still get a patient-specific knee. This technology is quite intuitive and adds accuracy and precision to our instruments, giving us the ability to restore mechanical alignment with all patients regardless of their deformity," said Gonzales.
"I am very active with tennis, running and skiing, but due to arthritis, my left knee was getting progressively worse and painful," said Mertrude. "I could feel my knee give out every time I walked, and I knew it was time for a knee replacement."
Arthritis is the number one cause for joint replacement surgeries. The procedure consists of replacing the diseased or damaged joint surfaces of the knee with metal and plastic implants that allow continued motion of the knee.
Mertrude was discharged three days after surgery. She walked out of the hospital unaided and was able to climb the stairs in her home that same day.
"Three months after surgery, I was able to continue my passion for tennis and have experienced no problems with my knee," said Mertrude. "The surgery truly improved my quality of life."
Mertrude recently had her right knee replaced using the same technology and is looking forward to a cross-country motorcycle ride with friends and family this spring.
Gonzales trains other orthopedic surgeons across the nation on how to use the device and the benefits of its implantation. He is currently conducting research comparing the new system to conventional instruments in total knee replacements.
For more information about joint replacement surgery at
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