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Total Knee vs. Partial Knee Replacement: Orthopaedic Services at UPMC in South Central Pa.

Depending on where the arthritis affects the knee, a robotic-arm assisted partial or total knee replacement may be recommended by your surgeon. With both procedures, the diseased or damaged joint is replaced with an artificial joint called an implant, and both procedures involve the orthopaedic surgeon guiding the robotic-arm to remove diseased bone and cartilage.

Partial knee replacement is a surgical procedure that helps relieve arthritis in one or two of the three compartments of the knee. Only the damaged area of the knee joint is replaced, which may help to minimize trauma to healthy bone and tissue.

With total knee replacement, the entire knee joint is diseased or injured and is replaced. Based on the severity of the arthritis in the knee, total or partial knee replacement may be recommended.

The benefits of the robotic-arm assisted surgery can include:

  • More precise joint alignment
  • Less soft tissue damage resulting in less pain, less blood loss
  • Healthy tissue and bone preserved
  • Optimal implant positioning
  • Improved early mobility

Robotic surgery is typically covered by most Medicare-approved and private health insurers.

How Robotic-Arm Assisted Technology Works

Robotic-arm assisted technology provides you with a personalized surgical plan based on your unique anatomy. First, a CT scan of the diseased knee joint is taken. This CT scan is uploaded into the robotic software, where a 3D model of your knee is created. This 3D model is used to pre-plan and assist your surgeon in performing your joint replacement procedure.

In the operating room, your surgeon follows your personalized surgical plan while preparing the bone for the implant. The surgeon uses the robotic-arm to stay within the planned boundaries that were defined when the personalized pre-operative plan was created.

Partial Knee Replacement

Robotic-arm assisted partial knee replacement is a treatment option for adults living with early to mid-stage osteoarthritis (OA) that has not yet progressed to all three compartments of the knee. Depending on where the arthritis affects the knee, patients may have an implant inserted in any of the following areas:

  • Bicompartmental
  • Medial (inside)
  • Patellofemoral (top)
  • Lateral (outside)

In comparison, robotic-arm assisted total knee replacement is a treatment option for adults living with mid to late-stage osteoarthritis of the knee. With robotic-arm assisted technology, Mako, the entire knee joint is replaced and the surgeon inserts a knee implant. With over a decade of clinical history, knee replacements are different than traditional knee replacements because they are designed to work with the body to promote natural-like circular motion.

Total Knee Replacement

To determine whether or not a partial or total knee replacement is right for you, your provider will complete the following steps:

  • Step 1. Knee CT Scan
  • Step 2. Knee Personalized Planning

If you think you may be a candidate for robotic-arm assisted surgery, your first step is to call 717-791-2620 or complete our online form and representative will contact you.

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