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Robotic surgery for orthopedics to be economical in terms of hospital stay & patient comfort: Expert

Nandita Vijay, Bengaluru
Saturday, January 9, 2021, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

For Indian healthcare, the application of robotic surgery for orthopedics will be economical in terms of hospital stay and patient comfort. Advanced technology and increasing awareness among the public with respect to the benefits of minimally invasive orthopedic surgical methods are driving robotic orthopedic surgeries globally.

The use of robotics in orthopedic surgeries improves precision and consistency of joint and hip replacement affecting less bone loss and blood loss which enhances the recovery time and the subsequent patient stay in the hospital. Patients can be discharged as early as 48 hours after the surgery.

There are also a large number of young surgeons who prefer robotics over conventional surgery. In terms of patients, India is experiencing increased incidents of complex chronic orthopedic disorders.

Robotics orthopedic surgeries are the preferred treatment mode as it is suitable for almost all joint replacements. In my experience there is almost a 100% success rate in robotics orthopedic surgeries which is not the case in conventional surgeries, Dr Prashanth R, co-founder, Specialist Hospital told Pharmabiz.

In fact India began using surgical robotics during the mid-2000s in specialties including gastrointestinal, urology, oncology, head and neck, thoracic, gynaecology, general surgery and bariatrics. The country was the second country after the US to adopt robotic orthopedic surgeries in 2017, he added.

However initially the technology was viewed with skepticism largely due to the high investment cost and the prevailing mindset of surgeons that it was not required. Today orthopedic is estimated to be one of the fastest-growing applications of robotic and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 25.82% by 2024.

The high cost of initial investment is one of the major factors holding back robotic-assisted surgeries in India. Additionally, there is the issue of many surgeons not wanting to adopt technology as they feel that it is an unnecessary investment, but that is slowly changing. Currently there is just a handful of trained orthopedics robotics surgeries in the country. This is however set to improve with the changing mindset of surgeons towards conventional surgical methods and increasing willingness to adopt robotics and invest in technology. India needs more surgeons in robotic surgery for orthopedics and there is a specialization in the same at the post graduate level, he said.

The benefits of robotics in orthopedics far outweigh any drawbacks that technology may have. In fact, Dr Prashanth noted that using robotic surgery on a young patient whose joints were completely destroyed was a success. It also helped to conduct a double knee and double hip replacement surgery in a single sitting. The patient now enjoys complete mobility, he said.


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