Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital introduces pioneering robotic-arm assisted surgery.

Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital has a new addition to its surgical team – Stryker Mako, the pioneering robotic-arm used to assist in joint replacement surgery. The use of robotics is becoming more prevalent in healthcare, and the introduction of this innovative, state-of-the-art technology at its Bristol Hospital highlights Nuffield Health’s commitment to providing their patients with the best possible treatment.

According to the National Joint Registry, joint replacements are some of the most common types of operation performed in the UK, meaning that improved outcomes have the potential to make a big difference to a large number of patients. With Stryker Mako, knee replacement surgery offered by Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital has evolved, bringing patients a range of enhanced benefits, including even greater surgical precision, which in turn leads to decreased pain and faster patient recovery.

How does robotic-arm assisted technology work?
Before surgery
Prior to their operation, the Mako robotic-arm processes the information taken from a 3D CT scan of the patient’s body, which the consultant will then use to plan the surgery much more precisely. Traditionally, knee replacements are implanted in a similar alignment for most patients, and while this traditional approach works well for many, there are some for whom it does not. Therefore, the Stryker Mako system offers a higher level of alignment and positioning during surgery.

During surgery
The consultant continues to be in total control during the operation, and the Mako robotic-arm assisted technology means they are able to implant the knee replacement in the best position for the patient using the detailed, individualised plan devised from their CT scan.

Recovery after surgery
This greater surgical precision also allows patients to recover more quickly, as the knee replacement fits as well as it possibly can. This has been shown to result in a shorter hospital stay, quicker recovery and higher satisfaction. There is also strong evidence of decreased pain and fewer complications following surgery.

Mr Jonathan Webb, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital, has been using the Stryker Mako system to carry out knee replacement surgery in London for some time and is excited that it is now also available to his patients in Bristol. Mr Webb says: “The Mako robotic-arm assisted technology is cutting edge, putting us at the forefront of joint replacement surgery, and at the same time seems to be improving our patient recovery times and outcomes.”

Andrew Polson, one of Mr Webb’s Bristol patients who had his joint replacement surgery using the Mako robot in London, says: “As I live in Bath, it would obviously have been better for me if Mr Webb had been able to perform my knee replacement surgery at the Nuffield in Bristol, rather than in London, so this is great news for other patients like me in the Bristol and Bath area. I have been so impressed by the surgery and my rate of recovery. I would definitely recommend the Mako!”

Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital is the only hospital in Bristol currently offering Mako robotic-arm assisted joint replacements. In addition to Mr Webb, a further four Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeons at the hospital are trained in using the Stryker Mako technology to assist their total knee replacement and partial knee replacement surgery – Mr Richard Baker, Mr Damian Clark, Mr Nick Howells and Mr Hywel Davies. Mr Clark says: “Although we call it ‘the robot’, it is actually an improvement of the whole knee replacement process, with the robotic-arm able to guide the surgeon to complete the surgery with greater precision. More precise surgery means less disturbance for the patient and faster recovery.”

For more information, call 0117 911 5339 or visit nuffieldhealth.com/hospitals/bristol

Main image: Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon Mr Jonathan Webb welcomed the arrival of the Stryker Mako robotic-arm to Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital, with the hospital’s senior management team, Business Development Manager Ann Brewin, Hospital Director Sasha Burns, and Finance Manager Mike Roberts.