High Tech Future in Orthopedics ~ Danbury Hospital is first in State to use innovative robotic technology for joint replacements

Robotic technology has found a new applications to assist the orthopedic surgeons of Western CT Health Network (WCHN), who were eager to showcase their new, state-of-the-art, computer-assisted robotic arm technology at a recent demonstration. Drs. Robert Deveney, John Dunleavy and Sanjay Gupta spoke about how this high-tech tool has revolutionized hip and knee surgeries and has optimized the patient's experience. Danbury Hospital is the first in the state of Connecticut to offer 'MAKOplasty' partial knee and hip replacement surgery. This innovative, breakthrough technology allows surgeons to perform surgery precisely through a smaller incision compared to the standard procedures.  The surgeon-controlled robotic arm combines 3-dimensional computer imaging with intelligent modeling and instrumentation to guide placement of the implants.  During the demonstration, the surgeons explained how they map out the entire procedure prior to the surgery based on the patient's unique anatomy, allowing exponential accuracy and real-time imaging during the surgery. Joseph Naber, OTR, Director of Rehabilitation at Laurel Ridge Health Care Center, was able to try out the Mako robot, manufactured by Stryker, with Dr. Deveney's assistance.  Mr. Naber said, "Just being able to be there first-hand with the surgeons that are performing this new surgical technique, which is only being offered at Danbury Hospital, was a great experience." Although not all patients are candidates, this surgery may be appropriate for people suffering with osteoarthritis, post-traumatic arthritis, hip dysplasia, rheumatoid arthritis and other diagnoses.  Pictured here is Dr. Deveney and Mr. Naber with the actual Mako robot during a simulation of partial knee replacement surgery.

Degenerative joint disease (DJD) can cause loss of cartilage, resulting in bone-on-bone contact that may result in pain, swelling, and stiffening in the joint.  Simple movements such as walking, bending, and turning requires the use of both the hip and knee joints.  Normally, all parts of these joints work together and the joint moves easily without pain.  But, when the joint becomes diseased or injured, the resulting pain can severely limit the ability to move and work properly.  Joint replacement or revision involves removal of the arthritic bone ends and damaged cartilage and replacing them with prosthetic implants that are designed to replicate the joint.  After exploring various options, surgery may be considered when the arthritis limits activities of daily living, such as walking and bending, and when pain is continuous and the use of anti-inflammatory drugs or other treatments are no longer working.  If you are considering joint replacement or just beginning to explore options, gaining knowledge will help you in choosing the best course of treatment to relieve the pain.  

About Western CT Health Network

Western CT Health Network's (WCHN) Center for Advanced Orthopedic and Spine Care is recognized as a center of excellence, delivering a full continuum of comprehensive care to both in and out-patients. The goal is to help the patient get back to life with a minimum of pain. Ultimately, WCHN strives to cultivate an atmosphere which harbors a positive outlook towards achieving good health in the future. For more information, please visit WCHN.org or call 203-739-7078.

About Laurel Ridge Health Care Center

Laurel Ridge provides a comprehensive program of care for a wide range of sub-acute medical and surgical conditions, including orthopedic rehabilitation. This enables patients to regain and maximize their capabilities and fosters independence following a full range of surgical and medical procedures. Their team of health care specialists include nursing, physicians, rehabilitation, recreation, dietary and social service members who work together to care for the whole person: mind, body and spirit. Individualized treatment plans are tailored to each patient, based on objectives identified by their physician and agreed upon by the patient and applicable family members.  For more information, visit www.athenahealthcare/laurelridge or call 203-438-8226 for the Rehab department.