Robotic Partial Knee Replacement : A Brief Introduction

Robotic Partial Knee Replacement : A Brief Introduction


If your knee pain affects your ability to lead a normal life, you may be a suitable candidate for PKR, a Robotic Partial Knee Replacement surgery, says Sr Consultant BLK Hospital Delhi Dr. Ishwar Bohra.

There was a time when patients with an early onset of knee osteoarthritis had not many choices. Since a total knee replacement was too severe for early to mid-stage knee osteoarthritis, patients generally preferred leading an inactive lifestyle or delayed the treatment until the pain really got worse. But, with the new-age technological advancements and treatment options such as Robotic PKR. Patients whose arthritis is confined to one compartment only too can get rid of knee damage, pain, and disability and lead a normal life.

The knee joint consists of three compartments or areas; the medial or inner side, lateral or outer side and patellofemoral or the area that’s between the kneecap and thigh bone. So when a candidate has two or more compartments of the knee affected, he or she is usually advised to go ahead with the total knee replacement. But, cases where only one compartment of the knee gets damaged and there’s no relief from other non-surgical treatment options, the patient is advised to get a partial knee replacement surgery done.

Earlier, in a conventional setup, surgeons used to perform the partial knee replacement manually and therefore, making a precise implant placement was a bit of a challenge. However, with the aid of a robotic arm, or with the latest minimal-invasive procedures such as Robotic PKR, the success of a partial knee replacement procedure has greatly increased.

What is a Robotic PKR?

Robotic PKR is basically a robot-assisted minimally invasive knee replacement surgery where the surgeon uses a specially-designed computer console to control surgical instruments on thin robotic arms.

Robotic partial knee procedure aids in replacement of the damaged surface of knee joints with the artificial implants which are made of high-grade plastic, metal alloys, and polymers. It is more of a natural-feeling knee because in this all ligaments ACL and PCL and meniscus preserved and is designed to relieve the patient of severe pain in the knee area that’s largely caused due to a condition known as osteoarthritis.

Who is the Ideal Candidate for Robotic PKR?

The partial knee surgery is highly suitable for the patients if arthritis in the knee is confined to a limited area (one compartment). Because of better implant availability and advance technique indications are expanding. But, if the arthritis is more widespread, then the patient may be advised to get the total knee replacement surgery. Your surgeon will evaluate for suitability for PKR.

Advantages of Robotic PKR

Preservation of healthy bone and tissue: By treating only the damaged part of the knee, the surgeon removes the diseased bone while preserving the healthy bone and tissue (ACL, PCL, and meniscus) surrounding it. This minimizes trauma and reduces recovery time.

  • Minimal scarring: Robotic PKR is often performed through a small incision of about 4 to 6 inches over the knee, thereby, resulting in minimal scarring.
  • More natural feeling knee post surgery: The preservation of the natural healthy bone and ligaments along with precise positioning of the implant results in a more natural feeling knee. Such knee is more athletic and you can play more sports with it.
  • Long implant life: New age implants usually last a lifetime. These have a life that ranges between 15 to 30 years.
  • Reduced recovery time: As it is a minimally invasive procedure with less blood loss, the recovery time is greatly reduced which means a quicker return to work. In fact, after approximately 6 weeks, patients are able to resume their daily activities such as running, moving around, etc.
  • Less expensive: In comparison to the total knee replacement surgery, partial knee replacement is a little less expensive. Besides, it requires less hospital stay(1-2 days/Daycare) which again reduces the overall cost of the surgery.

So if your knee pain is giving you discomfort and causing hindrance in leading a normal everyday life, it’s time you seek an appointment with your orthopaedic surgeon and explore your options about Robotic PKR, the minimally invasive partial knee replacement surgery, and lead a quality life.


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