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Technology adds precision to joint replacements

New technology at Optim Surgery Center is transforming the way joint replacement procedures are performed and providing patients with a less invasive knee or hip replacement surgeries by using the Mako Robotic-Arm during procedures.

Optim, 210 E. DeRenne Ave., is one of only seven locations in the state to offer Mako-assisted procedures.

The Mako allows the surgeon to have a more precise cut and fit for implants when they’re performing knee or hip replacement procedures. The patient undergoes a CT scan, which creates a sort of 3D surgical game plan that is linked up with the Mako’s monitor during surgery, said Connor Lawrie, Optim Surgery Center administrator.

“It’s sort of like coloring inside the lines of a coloring book,” Lawrie said.

“If a surgeon veers off from the plan on the scan the arm will lock up. It keeps it very precise.”

Lawrie said the center acquired the system in December and about half of the staff’s eight doctors are fully trained on the technology. Four procedures have been done using the Mako, the first was a partial knee surgery performed by Dr. Jonathan Christy in late December.

“It makes incredibly precise, accurate bone cuts. The case is done before you even make an incision, essentially,” Christy said.

“… It allows us to know what we’re trying to achieve before we even make bone cuts, which is completely new and very transforming, truly.”

The system also brings a new level of safety to procedures due to the boundaries created from the 3D image from the CT scan, Christy said.

“You’re within a quarter of a millimeter, which is not even remotely replicable with traditional instruments,” he said.

Surgeries performed with the Mako system also allows for less invasive procedures, which decreases the chances for soft tissue injury, infection and pain while increasing chances for a quicker recovery.

“The less time the knee or hip is open your infection rate goes down,” Christy said.

“… But the biggest thing is the pre-operative bone template. I know where that implant is going before I make a cut.”

On Monday Optim will be the first surgery center in the state to perform a Mako robotic-arm assisted total knee replacement surgery. The first two Mako total knee replacement procedures will be performed by Dr. Kent Woo, who is a total joint — hip and knee — surgeon with Optim Orthopedics. Prior to Monday’s scheduled surgeries the center had performed partial knee and total hip replacements.

The public will also be able to see the Mako in action on Monday evening during an open house at Optim where doctors will perform a live demonstration with the machine on a saw bone, which is often used in training.

“It’s truly taking a tried and true technology to the next level,” Christy said of the Mako.

“It’s moving in a better direction that’s going to get rid of outliers.”

More Info

Breakout Box: 

If you go

What: Mako Robotic-Arm Assisted Surgery demonstration

When: 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday

Where: Optim Orthopedics main lobby, 210 E. DeRenne Ave.

Info: marketing@optimhealth.com or 912-644-3327

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