Robotic knee surgery study revives debate over procedure’s benefits

As robotic assistance gains in popularity, new research has found no advantage over the conventional approach in reducing the need for knee replacement revision surgeries

April 11, 2024, Susan Kelly, Reporter –

The use of soft tissue and orthopedic robotic surgery systems has increased exponentially over the past decade, sometimes without clear-cut evidence of better outcomes for patients.

New research released at a recent meeting of orthopedic surgeons has rekindled the debate over which is the best approach to knee replacement: the conventional way, or with the help of a robot?

For now, the answer appears to be both.

The study, presented at the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons meeting in February, found that patients who received a cementless total knee replacement with robotic assistance were as likely to need revision surgery within two years as those whose procedures were performed with a manual method. Both groups had similar rates of implant loosening and infection.

The research underscores the limitations of what a robot can do and helps explain why orthopedic surgeons aren’t moving all of their cases over to the platforms just yet.


Josh Sandberg

Josh Sandberg is the President and CEO of Ortho Spine Partners and sits on several company and industry related Boards. He also is the Creator and Editor of OrthoSpineNews.

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