It is an unfortunate fact that up to 20 percent of patients who undergo traditional knee replacement may be unhappy with their results due to persistent pain in the joint even after surgery. This pain may come from many sources including instability, stiffness, or improper fit and sizing of the implants.
With improving and ever-changing technology, Alabama Orthopaedic Clinic has the only local surgeon, Dr. Matt Barber, providing a solution to some of these potential problems with the ConforMIS iTotal Knee Replacement. This procedure is only being offered in Mobile at Springhill Medical Center.
Dr. Barber knew there had to be a way to provide a higher success rate for total knee replacement and found that ConforMIS uses 3D printing technology to fabricate patient-specific implants that are designed to exactly match an individual’s anatomy and replicate the form and function of their original knee. By using a CT scan of the knee, computer software can calculate the shape and position of the implant that best achieves these goals and restores the proper alignment of the leg.
While there are other technologies available, such as robotic assistance, these advancements still use the conventional off-the-shelf knee implants, thus still having the potential for anatomic mismatches. ConforMIS total knee and partial knee replacements, on the other hand, are patient specific, thus produce a comfortable fit and allow more natural movement. In addition to faster recovery, the femoral component of this implant is thinner than those involved in a traditional total knee replacement preserving more of the patient’s bone, which can be potentially beneficial if other treatments are needed in the future.
Being the first FDA approved custom total knee replacement system for people who have osteoarthritis of the knee, the ConforMIS total knee is the only one of its kind to be designed for each individual patient’s needs.