Hundreds of thousands of knee replacement operations are performed across the country every year. In many cases, partial knee replacements may actually be the better option for the patient.
One doctor at St. Mary’s Hospital is the only one in the tri-state region using new robotic technology to perform partial knee replacements.
Lisa Musgrave suffers from osteoarthritis. She says everyday activities as simple as taking a walk can cause her immense amounts of pain. Just minutes before her partial knee replacement surgery she was nervous but looking forward to what’s to come.
“I just was really tired of not being able to stand and to do every day house work, go to my daughters ball games, and just everyday functions that people take for granted,” said Musgrave.
Dr. Vivek Neginhal with Scott Orthopedic Center and St. Mary’s hospital will be doing her robotic assisted partial knee replacement. The robotic part being the Navio Surgical Systems Blue Belt technologies surgical system.
“Still the surgeon is in control. What it does is it gives me a very refining sculpting tool to make it even more accurate so the results are better,” said Dr. Neginhal
On the knee he maps out the bad areas that need to be removed. The robot will not let him burr off any other areas. And before making any cuts it can project how the knee will move after the surgery depending on choices the doctor makes.
“That’s the way the robot comes in to help and I call that R2-D2 help us to get through the surgery,” said Dr. Neginhal
While it may look painful, Dr. Neginhal and his patients who have already had the surgery say there is less pain post operation than regular partial knee replacements.
Tom Moreland had his operation in October and Rich Kent’s was in November. Just hours after surgery they were on their feet. And now, their lives are changed.
“What can you say, it’s transforming. It’s life transforming. To be able to go from a period in your life when you had pain 24 hours-a-day and it affected every aspect of your life, to a period of being able to walk unencumbered,” said Moreland.
“Much easier, no pain, I could sleep much better. Everything is much better. It just helps me be a lot more active,” said Kent.
And just like them, Literally just hours after surgery, Lisa was already having similar feelings.
“It’s almost surreal, I expected to be laying in the bed, you know kind of groggy and not really sure whats going on and you know I'm alert and I've been up and I’ve eaten and it’s all been within just an hour or so of being in the room and so I’m excited,” said Musgrave
Lisa is planning on having her other knee undergo the same operation. Then she well be even closer to full strength.