HUTCHINSON — Soon, Hutchinson Regional Medical Center will offer Stryker’s Mako robotic-arm assisted knee replacement application, an advancement that transforms the way total and partial knee replacements are performed. The enhancement coincides with renovation of a unit on the hospital’s third floor to create an enhanced patient experience.
The first procedure utilizing the Stryker Mako robotic-arm assisted knee replacement is scheduled for March 4 at Hutch Regional.
Orthopedic procedures utilizing the Stryker Mako Robotic arm are slated to begin during March with renovations of the special orthopedics unit scheduled for completion in August 2019. Each year, more than 500 Reno County residents undergo knee replacement procedures.
Ken Johnson, president and CEO of Hutchinson Regional Healthcare System, said the advancement comes at a time when knee replacements are expected to increase by approximately 200 percent during the next ten years while nearly one-third of patients are dissatisfied with conventional surgery. “The advanced robotic technology allows the surgeon the option to create a personalized surgical plan while identifying the implant size, orientation and alignment based on each patient’s anatomy,” Johnson said.
Dr. James Lairmore has performed 5,000 hip and knee procedures as a physician with the Hutchinson Clinic and calls the Stryker Mako unit an “Alignment Device” that will assist the surgeon in making precise cuts to produce the best possible outcomes. “Joint surgeries requires two basic things: a painless long lasting joint surface provided by the implants and an alignment that places the hip, knee and ankle joint in a weight bearing line,” Dr. Lairmore said. “The precision of all these cuts in conjunction with allowing for variances in personal anatomy is where the Stryko Mako really shines.”
“Surgeries are performed based on the patient’s unique skeletal structure which is determined by information gleaned from a CT scan,” Dr. Lairmore continued. “This is then processed by the Stryker Mako Robot unit, and in conjunction with the surgeon and technician, precise cuts are made.”
Patients will literally start their recovery prior to surgery with the Enhanced Recovery After Service (ERAS) program through one-on-one meetings with the surgeon, nurses, anesthesiologist, and dietician to develop a pre-operative plan. Patients are allowed to consume clear fluids and food items within two hours of surgery. In some instances, the surgery may be performed with a spinal block to allow patients to recover in a painless, comfortable environment.
Referrals from the patient’s primary physician are not generally required and it is anticipated that a waiting time will be no more than three weeks for the new procedure. Upon completion of the 18-room orthopedic ward, patients will stay within the orthopedic unit while they recover and receive physical therapy in a gym located on the unit.
Johnson said the new and enhanced orthopedic unit at Hutch Regional will be an exceptional place to receive care. “This addition to our orthopedic service line further demonstrates our commitment to providing the Hutchinson community and our primary service area with outstanding healthcare,” Johnson said.