Tammy Mutasa, Mesquite Reporter
A new surgical robot is helping patients who need new knees.
Dallas Regional Medical Center is introducing a partial knee resurfacing technology using a new robotic arm interactive system.
Orthopedic surgeons call the million-dollar, cutting-edge robotic arm the "treatment of the future" for those with painful early- to mid-stage osteoarthritis of the knee.
Partial knee replacements require the highest degree of precision in placement for planting the prosthesis.
"Over the years, the difficulty with performing a joint replacement is basically getting the prosthesis in the best position," said Dr. Abraham Abdo. "If you get the prosthesis in the perfect position, the joint will survive much better than a joint which is not perfectly aligned."
Wanda Hall, 58, was the first patient to undergo the MAKOplasty procedure at DRMC. She has osteoarthritis in both knees.
"It was like a stabbing, with a knife," she said.
Abdo performed the partial knee replacement on her right knee as the first patient to get the surgery.
"I can get up and walk without it hurting," Hall said. "I can go up and down the steps without it hurting. I can just do anything without hurting, because when I didn't have the surgery, I was in so much pain."
The robotic arm is still only limited to partial knee replacements, but surgeons are hopeful the technology will branch out to other orthopedic surgeries.
"Using the robotic arm has several advantages," Abdo said. "Some of them is less hospital stay; the rehab is much easier on the patient, and definitely there is less blood loss, and patients have less pain with this type of surgery."
So far, there are 78 robotic arms in the country. The hospital said it hopes bringing one to Mesquite will bolster its program and services to the community.