MAKOplasty partial knee resurfacing is a minimally-invasive procedure for those suffering with painful early to mid-stage osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee. By selectively targeting the part of your knee damaged by OA, your surgeon can resurface your knee while sparing the healthy bone and ligaments surrounding it. In many cases, patients are permitted to walk soon after surgery, drive a car within two weeks and return to normal daily activities shortly thereafter.
Although the best treatment for each patient must be determined individually, typical MAKOplasty patients share the following characteristics:
- Knee pain with activity, usually on the inner knee, under the kneecap or the outer knee
- Start-up knee pain or stiffness when activities are initiated from a sitting position
- Failure to respond to non-surgical treatments or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication
Unlike other more invasive procedures, MAKOplasty can often be performed through a four to six inch incision over your knee with small incisions in both your femur (thigh bone) and tibia (shin). Additionally, the preservation of your own natural bone and tissue along with more ideal patient specific implant positioning may also result in a more natural feeling knee. And since healthy bone is preserved, patients who undergo MAKOplasty partial knee procedures may still be a candidate for a total knee replacement procedure later in life if necessary.
During the procedure, the diseased portion of the knee is resurfaced, sparing the patient’s healthy bone and surrounding tissue. An implant is then secured in the joint to allow the knee to move smoothly again.
The Benefits of MAKOplasty Partial Knee Resurfacing:
- Precisely resurfaces only the arthritic portion of the knee while preserving healthy tissue and bone
- Implant positioning results in a more natural feeling knee following surgery
- Typically more rapid recovery and shorter hospital stay than traditional total knee replacement surgery
- Improved surgical outcomes – less implant wear and loosening
- Smaller incision – less scarring and reduced blood loss
- Can be performed on an outpatient basis
As a knee arthroplasty procedure, MAKOplasty is typically covered by most Medicare-approved and private health insurers. In some cases it may be performed on an outpatient basis depending on what your surgeon determines is the right course of treatment for you
NCH Fast Track Recovery Program
If you're contemplating either hip or knee replacement surgery, you're probably eager to get back on your feet and moving again. Many orthopedic patients have been severely restricted by their bad knee or hip for months or even years. That's why the NCH Joint Replacement Program offers a "Fast Track" option for recovery so that patients can get home sooner and back on their feet faster.
The NCH Fast Track program isn't for everyone. A prospective Fast Track patient must be physically fit and have a positive mindset. The Fast Track program requires diligence, dedication and self-discipline. Fast Track patients go home a day earlier than regular patients and have all of their physical therapy managed by a home care nurse and physical therapist rather than in a rehabilitation center.
Why get patients home sooner? Very simply, the faster patients get home, the faster they heal and the healthier they are. The chance of infection is decreased, and they become more fully engaged in the rehabilitation process.
"NCH surgeons identify potential candidates for the Fast Track program," says Diane Ryzner, APN, for Orthopedics, Orthopedic Service Line Administrator and lead for the Fast Track team. "They look for patients who have the physical strength and mental determination to follow all the rules and see the program through when they get home. Age is not a factor as long as certain conditions are in place." Patients who decide to become a part of the program are guided every step of the way by the NCH Fast Track team comprised of the surgeon, nurses, patient care techs, clinical care coordinators (C3s), therapists, home care nurses and therapists.
Prospective candidates begin by attending a Joint Replacement class at NCH and learning about the process of their recovery. Before their surgery, staff members instruct patients on how to equip their home with all the necessary medical equipment, such as a shower chair, commode, walker, etc. C3s will assist in the selection of a home healthcare provider and physical therapist to come to their home.
Fast Track patients are scheduled early in the morning, and physical therapy begins afterward that same day. "That first session is so the therapist can assess a patient's physical condition after surgery," says Diane. "Sometimes we just have a patient sit up in bed and dangle their feet off the side of the bed. Other times, patients get out of bed and walk a few steps with a walker."
On the day of discharge, patients usually have a physical therapy session in the morning and then are picked up and driven home by their coach/caregiver right after lunch. As part of the program, patients must have a coach/caregiver stay with them 24 hours a day for at least 3 days. That afternoon, the home healthcare nurse and physical therapist will come to the patient's home for their first visit. Regular visits from the nurse and physical therapist continue until it's obvious that the patient can transition into outpatient therapy.
Of course, NCH will always offer the more traditional forms of recovery. But if you're eager to get out there and get moving again, the NCH "Fast Track" orthopedic program might be just what the doctor ordered.
Orthopedic issues often require multiple tests or imaging procedures to isolate and identify the exact location and nature of the problem— whether it is caused by wear and tear, injury or disease such as arthritis.
Diagnostic procedures may include:
- X-rays—to view 2D images of internal tissues, bones and organs
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)—to look for damage or disease in a surrounding ligament or muscle
- Computed tomography scan (CT or CAT scan)—to view highly detailed cross-section images of bones, muscles, fat and organs
- Electromyogram (EMG)—to evaluate nerve and muscle function
- Ultrasound—to view images of the internal organs
- Laboratory tests—to determine if other problems may be the cause
- Myelogram—to evaluate the spinal canal and nerve roots
- Radionuclide bone scan—to see blood flow to and cell activity within the bones