Imperial College Consultant Knee Surgeon, Mr Dinesh Nathwani says, "As with any new drug or medical technique, it is important to collect data from patients who have been treated using computer navigation, and to then compare their outcomes with results obtained in patients who have had standard knee replacement surgery. As computer navigation systems have not been around for that long in orthopaedics, this data is still being collected and analysed."
Different Patient Reaction to Surgical Outcomes
However, it appears as though the accuracy of alignment of the partial knee replacement leads to a much better functional result according to patients;
40 in every 100 patients having a total knee replacement done without computer navigation are dissatisfied with their new joint a year after surgery
Only 3 in 100 patients having a partial knee replacement using computer navigation expressed any concerns about their recovery.
Patients report being able to bend their knee to a much greater angle than those who have had standard total knee joint replacement. The repaired rather than replaced knee joint also ‘feels’ more natural, more part of the body and people are generally much happier with the results.
There are a number of knee experts, including at Imperial College, who are involved in improving the software and hardware systems to create a new solution for tailoring the replacement and improving accuracy. The focus is now on implant design with the ideal to use implants made specifically for individual patients and then inserted surgically with perfect accuracy.