Nearly 800,000 knee replacement surgeries are performed each year in the United States, according to statistics from the Cleveland Clinic.
Recovery, however, can be long and difficult. But new technologies are helping patients and their surgeons every step of the way.
Lisa Herrick of Arlington has become the first Texan to get a “smart knee”.
“The smart implant is an implant that communicates with the outside world, just like our smartphones or our smart watches, and even our smart coffee cups these days,” Dr. Om Patel, MD Baylor Scott & White told Frisco .
The knee-implanted device is from Persona IQ and is the world’s first and only smart knee implant to be granted De Novo status by the FDA for total knee replacement surgery.
Bluetooth-enabled implantable sensor technology measures range of motion, step count, gait speed and other gait parameters.
It records and wirelessly transmits a wide range of data to a patient’s personal base station at home and the patient can retrieve the information on a smartphone app.
The data is then securely transmitted to a HIPAA-compliant cloud-based platform and can be viewed by the patient and surgeon.
“The surgeon has the full ability to monitor the patient to make sure there is nothing happening in the background that we are missing. If so, we will receive red flags or alerts that this person has maybe needs a little more attention, maybe something is wrong that we can check,” Patel said.
This type of Bluetooth technology is not new.
There are Bluetooth-enabled pacemakers, hip replacements and spine stimulators, but being the first in Texas to get a “smart knee” is pretty sweet, according to Herrick.