Health City Cayman Islands has joined an elite group of hospitals around the world that can perform robotic assisted orthopedic surgery on knees and other joints.
“This technology has really changed the way surgeries are performed,” asserted Dr. Alwin Almeida, Health City’s Senior Consultant Orthopedic Surgeon. “With the acquisition of this advanced system we have taken orthopedic surgery to a different plane altogether.”
According to Dr. Almeida, who is a member of the American Orthopedic Association, the addition of this computer guided system places Health City Cayman Islands in a select group of institutions, such as the Cleveland Clinic and Mayo Clinic, employing the advanced technology.
“Not many centers in the United States have it. We are probably one of the first hospitals and groups of orthopedic surgeons in the Caribbean to have the capability and expertise to perform computer navigated surgeries,” he noted, adding that even in the United Kingdom the system is installed at relatively few hospitals, and is restricted to the larger teaching hospitals and some of the more expensive private facilities based in central London.
The system, marketed by some clinics in the United States as “robotic assisted surgeries,” guides the surgeon to more precise bone cuts and ligament balancing for the best results.
“It reduces surgical errors and allows for more precise placement of implants and alignment and hence, a superior result,” stated Dr. Almeida who has performed numerous procedures using computer guided techniques in his native India.
“Where the system is most helpful is in difficult primary surgeries and correction of complex deformities associated with arthritic joints, which need joint replacements. These operations would not be possible without the assistance of the computer with infrared sensors and active trackers, which recreates a real time, 3-D model of the patient’s limb,” explained Dr. Almeida.
Furthermore, he reported, “because the image is in real time, any movement of the patient’s limb is captured on the screen. With this level of detail, the surgeon can be guided to where he or she should place his bone cuts and how much to balance the ligaments to achieve optimal surgical precision. The computer continues to monitor the rest of the surgery and we can verify our technique and decisions at any step.”
Following physiotherapy and exercise, patients report better results than those who undergo standard knee joint replacement. Delighted by the promise of the new technology, Dr. Almeida declared that with the addition of the computer guided system, “we can state with confidence that we are a center of excellence in the field of orthopedics in the Caribbean and the Americas.”