CHA HPMC has recently introduced the world’s most advanced Robotic-Assisted surgical system to optimize clinic outcomes, decrease surgical invasiveness, and improve patient lives. Dr. William T. Long, board-certified Orthopedic Surgery Specialist at CHA HPMC, was the first surgeon to perform a robotic-assisted knee replacement in Los Angeles in 2008 and is an innovator in minimally invasive surgical techniques. We interviewed Dr. Long to learn more about minimally invasive joint replacement and robotic-assisted surgery at CHA HPMC.

What is minimally invasive surgery?

Minimally Invasive Surgery (MIS) is a term that describes surgery that causes least harm to the patient’s body. Most patients associate minimally invasive surgery with small surgical incision. In 2012, we published a scientific article that showed that patients prefer smaller incisions because they feel less violated.

Besides the smaller incision, what other factors make MIS safer and less painful?

To our surgical team, the term MIS includes a smaller incision, anesthesia without intubation or inhaled anesthetic gas, eliminating tourniquet use, and minimizing opioid use with nerve blocks. Robot-assisted partial knee replacement surgery allows surgeons to repair only the damaged part of the knee instead of replacing the entire joint surface.

What type of minimally invasive orthopedic surgeries do we offer?

Recently, CHA HPMC brought onboard the most advanced robotics platform called CORI Surgical System. It is the only joint replacement system that allows partial knee, total knee, and bi-cruciate retaining total knee arthroplasty (technique that allows preservation of both of the cruciate ligaments). Computer-assisted hip replacement at CHA HPMC allows rapid recovery using the smallest possible incision. CHA HPMC has the most advanced technology in joint replacement combined with the most experienced robotic surgery team in Southern California.
CORI Surgical System
How does robotic surgery work?

The 2020 CORI Surgical System is a surgeon-controlled, handheld robotic system and provides a 3-dimensional image that allows the surgeon to plan the operation using computers. The entire operating team can see that the operation is performed exactly according to plan.

The CORI Surgical System does not require a CT scan; thereby eliminates unnecessary expense, inconvenience, and radiation exposure for patients. The surgeon fully controls the robotic arms and his movements are translated into precise movements inside the patient’s body.

Which conditions are treated with robotic surgery?

  • All forms of arthritis. (cartilage loss, knee pain and disability caused by age, injury, or joint disease)
  • Partial knee replacements (medial, lateral, or patellofemoral)
  • Total knee replacement
  • Total knee replacement preserving both cruciate ligaments (bi-cruciate sparing)

What are the benefits of CORI Surgical System?

The CORI Surgical System uses 3D digital modeling to get a surgical plan customized to the patients’ unique anatomy which helps perform the procedure more accurately than traditional knee replacement surgery. Additional benefits of orthopedics robotic surgery include:

  • CORI enables the surgeon to target the damaged area of the knee while preserving the healthy tissue. This is similar to a dentist fixing a damaged tooth with a filling instead of crown.
  • Saving the ligaments helps preserve the stability and natural feel of the knee for patients.
  • CORI helps create a highly individualized plan that is specific to the unique shape and motion of patient’s knee. It helps eliminate errors such as incorrect implant size and incorrect limb alignment.
  • Reduces blood loss, pain, and tissue trauma.
  • Faster return of range of motion and less postoperative swelling.
  • More precise and accurate alignment and custom fit for total knee replacement.
  • CORI Surgical System reduces patient cost, inconvenience, and radiation exposure associated with procuring a CT scan.
  • Minimizes or completely eliminates hospital stay: Patients have the option of recovering from the comfort and safety of their own home.
  • Faster return to normal daily and recreational activities.

What is the recovery time for a partial knee replacement versus a total knee replacement?

Both partial and total knee replacement patients can walk using assistive device like walker on the day of surgery. More than half of the patients will transition to crutches on the day of surgery. By one week, most partial and total knee replacement patients walk with only a single crutch or cane.

The difference between recovery from total knee compared to partial knee replacement is the length of time that the knee remains warm and swollen, and the time and effort that it takes to gain maximum flexion. Patients with total knee replacement have some swelling for 6-9 months and partial knee patients have some residual swelling for about 3-4 months.

Return to recreational activities can begin as early as 6 weeks after partial knee replacement and most total knee patients can return to the gym or dance class by about 2 months after surgery.

What are the other benefits of getting a minimally invasive orthopedic procedure done at CHA HPMC?

  • CHA HPMC has the most experienced orthopedic robotic surgery team as well as the most advanced robotic-assisted surgical technology in the world.
  • As a community hospital, CHA HPMC accepts almost all insurances and brings cutting edge technology to our community first.

The robotic-assisted knee replacement technology is the latest in CHA HPMC’s ongoing commitment to implement innovative technologies to provide high quality medical care and improve patient lives.
To learn more information or schedule a consultation with our expert, please call 323.913.4300.
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