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Mako Total Knee Replacement

Common Causes of Knee Pain

Your joints are involved in almost every activity you do. Movements such as walking, bending and turning require the use of your hip and knee joints. When the knee becomes dieseased or injured, the resulting pain can severely limit your ability to move and work.

The knee is the largest joint in the body and is central to nearly every routine activity. The knee joint is formed by the ends of three bones:
  • The lower end of the thigh bone, or femur.
  • The upper end of the shin bone, or tibia.
  • The kneecap or, patella.
Thick, tough tissue bands called ligaments connect the bones and stabilize the joint.

Common Causes Of Knee Pain

A smooth, plastic like lining called cartilage covers the ends of the bones and prevents them from rubbing against each other, allowing for flexible and nearly frictionless movement. Cartilage also serves as a shock absorber, cushioning the bones from the forces between them. Finally a soft tissue called synovium lines the joint and produces a lubricating fluid that reduces friction and wear.

Each patient is unique, and can experience knee pain for different reasons. One common cause of knee pain is osteoarthritis (OA).

OA is sometimes called degenerative arthritis, because it is a "wearing out" condition involving the breakdown of cartilage in the joints. When the cartilage wears away, the bones rub against each other, causing pain and stiffness.

Another common cause of knee pain is rheumatoid arthritis (RA). RA produces chemical changes in the lining of the joints, or synovium, that causes it to become thickened and inflamed. In turn, the synovial fluid destroys cartilage. The end result is cartilage loss, pain, and stiffness.

If you haven't experienced adequate relief with conservative treatment options, like bracing, medication or joint fluid supplements, your doctor may recommend total knee replacement.

Did you know?
Approximately 27 million Americans suffer from osteoarthritis (OA).

Mako Total Knee Replacement

Total knee replacement is a surgical procedure in which a diseased or damaged joint is replaced with an artificial joint called an implant. Made of metal alloys and high grade plastics (to better mach the function of bone and cartilage, respectively), the implant is designed to move much like a healthy human joint.

A Replaced Knee

Pver the years, knee replacement techniques and instrumentation have undergone countless improvements. Mako Robotic-Arm Assisted Technology with Triathlon Total Knee implants is an example of how technology is transformingf the way joint replacement surgeries are being performed. When you hear 'robotic-arm assisted technology,' it's important to understand that the Mako Robotic-Arm doesn't actually perform the surgery. Surgery is performed by an orthopaedic surgeon, who uses the Mako System software to pre-plan your surgery. Your orthopaedic surgeon will guide the Mako robotic-arm to remove diseased bone and carilage. Then the surgeon will insert a Triathlon Total Knee implant. Mako Technology was designed to help surgeons provide patients with a personalized surgical experience based on their specific diagnosis and anatomy.

Triathlon Total Knee

With over a decade of clinical history, Triathlon single-radius knees are different than traditional knee replacements because they are designed to work with the body to promote natural-like circular motion. This is due to the single radius design of the knee implant. Single radius means that as your knee flexes, the radius is the same, similar to a circle, potentially requiring less effort from your quadriceps muscle.
Since the thigh muslce (the quadriceps) is attached to your knee, it is unavoidably involved in the surgery. Therefore, the quadricps muscle can become a source of discomfort or pain during your recovery period. The quadriceps muscle plays an important role in your ability to move your legs so it also has a major impact on your recovery and how quickly you can get back to living your life.

How Mako Technology Works

Before Surgery

It all begins with a CT scan of your knee joint that is used to generate a 3D virtual model of your unique anatomy. This virtual model is loaded into the Mako System software and is used to create your personalized pre-operatove plan.

In the Operating Room

In the operating room, your surgeon will use the Mako System to assist in performing your surgery based on your personalized pre-operative plan. When the surgeon prepares the bone for the implant, the surgeon guides the robotic-arm within the predefined area and the Mako System helps the surgeon stay wthin the planned boundaries that were defined when the personalized pre-operative plan was created. The Mako System also allows your surgeon to make adjustments to your plan during surgery as needed. In a laboratory study, Mako Technology demonstrated accurate placement of implants to a personalized surgical plan. This study aso showed that Mako Total Knee replacement demonstrated soft tissue protection to the ligaments around the knee.

After Surgery

After surgery, your surgeon, nurses and physical therapists will set goals with you to get you back on the move. They will closely monitor your condition and progress. Your surgeon may reviwe a post-operative x-ray of your new knee with you.

Preparing for Surgery

preparing for total knee replacement, surgery begins weeks before the actual surgery. The checklist below outlines some tasks that your surgeon may ask you to compete in the weeks prior to your surgery date.
  • Excercise under your doctor's supervision
  • Have a general physical examination
  • Have a dental examination
  • Review medications
  • Stop smoking
  • Lose weight
  • Arrange a pre-operative visit
  • Get laboratory tests
  • Complete forms
  • Prepare meals
  • Confer with a physical therapist
  • Plan for post-surgery rehabilitative care
  • Fast the night before
  • Bathe the surgical area with antiseptic solution