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Precision Reigns with MAKOplasty: Patient Stories

A Perfect Joint: Precision Reigns with New Knee Replacement Alternative

Wouldn't it have been great as a child if your crayon held some special power that prevented your little hand from allowing that colorful wax point to slip across those border lines? No sloppy scribbles. No tinge of embarrassment when Mom stuck your masterpiece on the refrigerator door. Just pure pride.

That’s a bit how Dr. Harold Hunt feels after completing his work of art with the RIO Robotic Arm Interactive Orthopedic system, a revolutionary new way Sky Ridge Medical Center is rebuilding osteoarthritis-plagued knees. Hunt was the first in the area to perform MAKOplasty®, a highly-precise, minimally-invasive knee-resurfacing procedure. And when it comes to knee surgery, perfection reigns — even more than color-book pictures for Mom.

MAKOplasty® Helps Position Knee Implants Perfectly for Knee Pain Relief

"The selling point that got me with the MAKOplasty and the computer-assisted robotic arm was that the knee implants would position in the patient’s knee perfectly 100-percent of the time," says Hunt, who offers MAKOplasty® at Sky Ridge with a number of his colleagues (see related doctors to the right ). For the patient, that should mean a better functioning, longer-lasting knee, he says.

Although Karen Jara was asleep for the robotic-arm piece, one of Hunt’s first MAKOplasty® patients remembers the precise measuring and scanning that created a 3-D computer model image of her knee to aid the doctor in planning and surgery. The computer showed the exact areas where osteoarthritis wore away at her cartilage, and where Hunt would do his work, burring away her diseased cartilage and implanting prosthetic implants to resurface the joint.

"The robotic arm allows you to carve out cartilage and bone where you want the implants to go, but it’s limited by the computer model," Hunt says. "The computer knows exactly where the implants need to go, and it will only let you go as far as that range, left or right, up or down. It’s like not being able to color outside of the lines."

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