MAKO Surgical recently announced the release of its RIO Robotic Arm Interactive Orthopedic System.
While the device is strictly intended for knee resurfacing operations, the RIO may be a sign of things to come; robots like RIO may be increasingly utilized in complex surgeries. Knee resurfacing is a notoriously difficult operation to perform and it is hoped that the RIO robot will introduce stability and precision.
The device is not completely autonomous. It is designed to assist surgeons during knee resurfacing operations, a minimally invasive type of surgery thought to be useful for younger, active patients with early osteoarthritis.
According to MAKO:
MAKO’s robotic arm system is the first FDA-cleared robotic arm system for orthopedic surgery. It provides patient-specific, three-dimensional modeling for pre-surgical planning. As surgeons use the robotic arm to resurface the knee for placement of the implants, RIO™ provides real-time inter-operative visual, tactile and auditory feedback, enabling a high level of precision and optimal positioning of the implants.Sure, looks fancy -- but what about its bedside manner?
MAKOplasty® provides the potential for improved surgical outcomes, with a less invasive partial knee resurfacing procedure that spares healthy bone and tissue, preserves ligaments and allows for a more rapid recovery and a more natural feeling knee.