Custom-Fit Knee Replacements
Exact duplicate of existing knee joint
Core Physicians is now offering a state-of-the-art knee replacement technology, which enables patients to have an exact duplicate of their existing knee joint custom made for them prior to surgery.
The technology, known as Custom-Fit, involves having an MRI or CT scan done of the joint that will be replaced. This 3-D image is then used to create a 3-D computer model of the knee, which is used to make a replacement joint the exact size and dimension of the old joint.
In a more traditional knee replacement surgery, surgeons would attempt to make as close a match as possible to the existing joint by selecting from the available replacement joints in the operating room. With the new surgery, surgeons have an exact replacement ready to go and have planned out the entire surgery on a computer before going to the operating room.
“Since we are able to prepare and plan for the surgery via computer, the patient’s overall time in surgery is less,” said Thomas McGovern, MD. “In most cases patient’s recovery should be easier and due to the more precise match of the new joint, it should last longer.”
How Long Will My New Knee Replacement Last
Research has shown that the longevity of a knee replacement depends on how precise it is placed during surgery. Even a slight misalignment can result in uneven wear, instability and the increased risk of a future corrective knee replacement surgery.
Individuals who have had knee replacement surgeries in the past decade can typically expect the new joint to last 10 to 15 years. The Custom-Fit technology is expected to last much longer, although due to its newness there is no long term data available yet. This is good news as people are getting knee replacements at younger ages and maintaining an active lifestyle later in life. These people are generally healthy going into the surgery and are able to recover faster following knee replacement surgery.
“Last year approximately 500,000 knee replacement surgeries were done in the United States and that number is expected to quadruple over the next 10 to 15 years,” said Dr. McGovern.
The new technology is one of several advances in recent years in knee replacement surgery, including computer assisted surgery. The Custom-Fit technology is only available for knee replacements at this time, although there is potential for hip replacements in the future.