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What is the ROSA® System?

ROSA® is a robotic surgical assistant developed by Zimmer Biomet that enables surgeons to carry out knee and hip replacement surgeries with greater precision. The ROSA® robotic system utilizes real-time information and assists surgeons with precise placement of the implants based on a person’s unique anatomy.

Indications for ROSA® Robotic-Assisted Joint Replacement

The ROSA® system is indicated for individuals with early-to-mid-stage osteoarthritis of the hip or the knee exhibiting symptoms such as pain, swelling, and locking, that is not amenable to conservative treatment. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that causes breakdown and eventual loss of cartilage in the joint making the bones rub against each other leading to painful movement.

Preparation for ROSA® Robotic-Assisted Joint Replacement

The preoperative preparation is similar to most total joint replacement procedures. But contrary to traditional techniques, the ROSA system utilizes a series of X-rays to generate 3D images of an individual’s unique anatomy. This 3D image enables the surgeon to design a personalized plan based on the specifics of an individual’s hip or knee anatomy prior to performing total joint replacement surgery.

Procedure Involved with ROSA® System

In general, the surgical procedure using the ROSA system is similar to that of a traditional joint replacement procedure but performed with the help of a robotic assistant. The robotic system does not perform the procedure on its own. The surgery is performed entirely by your surgeon by prompting the robotic hands as per the personalized plan developed by your surgeon. The ROSA system is only an additional tool to guide your surgeon and ensure greater accuracy in the placement of the implants. It cannot replace the skills of your experienced surgeon.

During surgery, the ROSA system functions like a high-tech GPS system utilizing optical trackers and a mini-camera to determine the exact position of the knee or the hip in space. The robotic system makes adjustments even with the slightest movement ensuring the surgical plan designed by your surgeon is carried out without any changes and with a high degree of precision. Throughout the procedure, your surgeon is provided with real-time data by the ROSA system, which enhances your surgeon’s skill enabling accurate placement of the implant.

Postoperative Care and Recovery

Recovery is fairly quick as it is a minimally invasive procedure. In general, postoperative care and recovery involves the following:

  • You may notice some stiffness and pain. Medications will be prescribed to manage this discomfort.
  • Instructions on surgical site care, driving, and bathing will be provided.
  • A balanced diet rich in iron supplements is recommended to help your wound heal and to restore muscle strength.
  • You are advised to maintain a healthy weight to minimize stress on the joint.
  • Refrain from smoking as it can negatively affect the healing process.
  • Refrain from any strenuous activities requiring weight-bearing. You should gradually increase your activity level with light activities.
  • A customized exercise regimen is advised after a few weeks following surgery to strengthen your leg muscles and improve your range of motion.
  • You should be able to resume most of your normal activities in a couple of weeks following surgery.
  • A follow-up appointment will be scheduled to monitor your progress.

Advantages of ROSA® Robotic-Assisted Joint Replacement

Being a minimally invasive approach, the ROSA® system offers the following benefits:

  • Smaller incisions with reduced scarring and minimal blood loss
  • Less post-operative pain
  • Shorter hospital stay and recovery period
  • Quicker return to daily activities
  • Lower incidence of complications
  • Precise placement of the implant
  • Reduced injury to adjacent tissues
  • Increased longevity of the implant

Risks and Complications

ROSA® robotic-assisted joint replacement is a relatively safe procedure; however, as with any surgery, there are risks and complications that can occur, such as:

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Damage to surrounding soft tissues
  • Stiffness or instability in the joint

Related Topics
  • Northern Light Blue Hill Hospital
  • Northern Light Maine Coast Hospital
  • Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada
  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons
  • Eastern Orthopaedic Association
  • Canadian Orthopaedic Association
  •  Orthopaedic Trauma Association