CLEARFIELD COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — Orthopedic surgeons at Penn Highlands Healthcare say they have achieved outstanding results with its robotic-assisted knee and hip replacement surgery.

The Mako SmartRobotic surgery has been used by surgeons for the past two years and has performed more than 500 joint replacement surgeries as of this fall. The innovative technology is used at Penn Highlands DuBois, Penn Highlands Clearfield and Penn Highlands Elk.

Penn Highlands was the first health system in Northwestern/Central Pennsylvania to offer the robotic-assisted surgery for partial and total knee as well as hip replacement.

“We want the most advanced technology, the safest surgical procedures and the fastest, most painless recovery possible for our patients,” Penn Highlands Healthcare Orthopedic Robotic Surgery Director Matthew A. Varacallo, MD, said. “Patients who receive robotic-assisted joint replacement surgery have fewer complications; less pain, scarring and blood loss; and they can return to their normal daily activities faster.”

The Mako robot uses 3D CT-based planning software helps surgens create a virtual model of the joint and develop an advanced surgical plan customized to the patient’s anatomy. The surgeons guide the robotic arm to position the implant in the joint.

Penn Highlands says the robot does not perform the surgery or move without the surgeon’s guidance.

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“We know the decision to have joint replacement surgery is often a difficult one for patients to make. After performing more than 500 robotic-assisted joint replacement surgeries at three of the hospitals in our health system, Penn Highlands orthopedic surgeons are confident that people in the Northwestern/Central Pennsylvania region can choose to have their hips and knees replaced and be back on their feet with confidence,” Dr. Varacallo said.

More information about robotic-assisted knee and hip replacement surgery can be found on Penn Highlands website.