A Birmingham hospital has got an unusual new recruit to the surgical team - a ROBOT to help with hip replacements.
The Royal Orthopaedic Hospital is the first NHS hospital in the country to introduce the pioneering robotic-arm to assist with knee and hip operations.
The advanced Stryker Mako robotic-arm is a ‘game-changer’ for the surgeons, allowing them to fit a new hip with 100 per cent accuracy.
The ‘extra pair of hands’ in the theatre means that the new joint can be fitted according to the patient’s specific anatomy, speeding up recovery.
Professor Edward Davis, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon, said: “The Royal Orthopaedic Hospital has been pioneering care in the field of orthopaedics since its inception and this investment in leading-edge technology represents another exciting chapter in that story.
“With this technology we can provide each patient with a personalised surgical experience based on their specific diagnosis and anatomy.
“Using a virtual 3D model, Mako allows surgeons to create each patient’s surgical plan pre-operatively. During surgery, we can validate that plan and make any necessary adjustments while guiding the robotic-arm to execute that plan.”
More than 217,000 hip and knee replacement operations were carried out at NHS and independent hospitals in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man last year.
More than 1,300 hip procedures undertaken at the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital alone.
Mum-of-two Elaine Spencer, 69, was the first patient to undergo the surgery using the robot arm.
And six weeks after the surgery, the mum-of-two has gone from strength to strength.
She said: “I have been keeping my own diary of my progress. After two weeks I was back swimming, after three weeks I was driving and could go up and down stairs normally, rather than a step at a time, and at four weeks I got rid of my walking stick altogether.
“Since then I have been to the theatre and I’ve got on the train, both of which involved lots of steps. I can now sleep on the side that was operated on and I am enjoying going for walks, in fact I am just in from a walk just now.”
“I am really really pleased with how things have gone. It has been a transformation.”
Professor Davis said: “We are proud to be the first NHS hospital to offer this highly advanced robotic technology in the UK.
“The addition of Mako to our orthopaedic service line further demonstrates our commitment to provide the community of Birmingham, the West Midlands and beyond with outstanding healthcare.”