Replacing knees with 3D

FRESNO, Calif.

Even simple things, like standing while making a cup of coffee became a struggle for Joyce Horowitz when her knee began to bother her four years ago.

"Just my daily routine became an effort," Joyce Horowitz told Action News .

When the constant ache wouldn't go away, Joyce knew it was time to do something about it.

"It was a 24-hour feeling of just being in pain," Joyce said.

Doctor Robert Zann recommended a total knee replacement using shape match technology.

"It's a tremendous feeling that I can go home every day very comfortable that knee was done perfectly," Robert Zann, M.D., an orthopedic surgeon at Delray Medical Center, explained.

Here's how it works, MRI images are used to create a 3D image of your knee. Then a custom fit knee is made and precisely placed.

"There's no guesswork anymore. We can place it exactly where it's supposed to be, and when we're done the x-rays show they are in perfect position," Dr. Zann said.

About 85% of knee implants last 20 years, but with better alignment, patients can expect longer-lasting results.

"A knee that's done well and lines up like that has every potential to last a patient's lifetime," Dr.Zann said.

Getting back to normal activity is also improved. With traditional surgery, it takes patients 4 to 6 weeks to walk unaided. Joyce was on her feet the same day and walking without a cane in two weeks. Four weeks later, she was healed.

"It's been remarkable. I never thought that it would have healed and I'd be able to resume the things I am doing in such a short period of time," Joyce said.

Shape match technology allows for a much shorter recovery time because it's much less invasive than traditional surgery. The incisions are shorter and the muscle is not cut to place the knee. About a dozen surgeons across the U.S. are currently performing the surgery.

If you would like more information, please contact:
Liz Huffman, RN.
(561) 756-1770

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