Arthroplasty is a surgery replacing damaged or diseased parts of a knee joint with prostheses.
What is it?
Computer-assisted total knee arthroplasty refers to a knee replacement technique that uses advanced computer technology for greater precision and improved outcomes. This procedure is also known as a total knee replacement, which corrects damage in the knees with artificial implants. Knee arthroplasty alleviates pain in the knees and greatly improves mobility and function of the knee joint. Knee replacements are also beneficial for patients with failing knees because they reinforce the joint, providing stability.
What should I do to prepare?
Before receiving surgery, the patient should consult with a physician or surgeon to determine if this surgery is the proper course of action. X-rays and other diagnostic imaging techniques are used to develop a treatment plan. Medication plans and fasting routines may be necessary depending on the surgeon’s guidelines. Knee arthroplasty is typically an inpatient procedure, so the patient should expect to remain at the hospital for post-surgical evaluation. Additionally, the patient should arrange travel accommodations in advance.
What happens during the process?
Knee arthroplasty is a more complicated procedure due to the anatomy and the numerous ligaments. The surgeon will begin by accessing the knee, where he or she cuts the damaged cartilage. The femur is reshaped to accommodate an implant. A spacer is placed to ensure proper functioning of the joint and that the tibia and femur move smoothly. Finally, a device is installed behind the patella, to prevent friction that would result from the new prostheses.
What are the risks and potential complications?
The use of computer technology has led to effective outcomes and significantly reduces risk for knee arthroplasty. However, risks always remain with surgery. Risks that accompany surgical procedures include but are not limited to improper anesthesia, infections, nerve damage, excessive bleeding, an inability of the wound to heal, and bone fractures. There is also the risk that the artificial joints are not implemented properly.
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