Mako Robotic Surgery

Innovation. Compassion. Quality. St. Tammany.

Innovation and technology have long been central to what we do at St. Tammany Health System, and nowhere is that more evident than in our growing arsenal of surgical robots to assist our surgeons as they work to help patients feel like themselves again.

Among the newest additions to our growing list of robotic surgical aides is Stryker's Mako system, a high-tech robotic tool used by surgeons in performing total knee and hip replacements.

“By adding Mako to our robotics inventory, St. Tammany is changing the way orthopedic surgeries are performed across the joint replacement service line,” said orthopedist Roch Hontas MD of STHS's Bone and Joint Clinic. “We’re providing each patient with a far more precise surgery plan based on our own decades of experience coupled with the Mako’s highly detailed imagery.”

Using a virtual 3D model, the Mako System allows surgeons to create each patient’s surgical plan pre-operatively before entering the operating room. During surgery, the surgeon can validate that plan and make any necessary adjustments while guiding the robotic arm.

Only your doctor can say for sure whether Mako-assisted surgery is right for you. Below, find resources on the Mako system as you explore your options. You can also find more information on the official Mako website.


Frequently asked questions

A closer look at Mako robotic-assisted surgery:

How does Mako robotic-assisted surgery work?

One important thing to remember about robotic-assisted surgery is that your surgeon is still running the show. Stryker's Mako system is merely a high-tech tool for him or her to use to more efficiently and effectively get the job done with greater precision. That can result in fewer complications and quicker recovery time.

It starts with a virtual 3D model of your unique anatomy, which allows your surgeon to create a personalized surgical plan pre-operatively before even entering the operating room, including identifying the implant size, orientation and alignment. During surgery, your doctor can validate that plan and make any necessary adjustments while guiding the robotic arm.

Am I too old for a knee or hip replacement?

While age is an important factor in your health, age alone is usually not a reason to not have knee or hip replacement surgery. Your doctor will be more interested in your overall health and will consider a variety of things such as blood test results, your physical strength, bone density, diet/lifestyle, etc. to determine whether knee replacement is right for you.

After surgery, how soon can I get back to daily activities?

Everyone is different, but most people who undergo knee replacement surgery and participate in a physical therapy regimen prescribed by their doctor return to their day-to-day activities like driving in four to six weeks. Those undergoing hip replacement surgery and participating in a physical therapy regimen prescribed by their doctor usually return to their day-to-day activities within three to six weeks of surgery.

Is Mako an option for me?

Only your doctor can say whether you're a candidate for Mako-assisted total knee or hip replacement, however, in general terms the surgery is for:

  • People with severe hip or knee pain or stiffness resulting from non-inflammatory degenerative joint disease – including osteoarthritis, traumatic arthritis or avascular necrosis – rheumatoid arthritis or post-traumatic arthritis.
  • Those who haven’t experienced adequate relief with conservative treatment options, such as bracing, medication or joint fluid supplements.

Joint replacement surgery is not appropriate for patients with certain types of infections, any mental or neuromuscular disorder which would create an unacceptable risk of prosthesis instability, prosthesis fixation failure or complications in postoperative care, compromised bone stock, skeletal immaturity, severe instability of the joint or excessive body weight.

Like any surgery, joint replacement surgery has serious risks. It is important to closely follow your doctor’s instructions regarding post-surgery activity, treatment and follow-up care. Ask your doctor if a joint replacement is right for you.

What questions should I ask my doctor?

Having trouble knowing where to start? These starter questions will help you talk about your knee or hip pain with your doctor. They’ll also help you and your doctor determine if knee or hip replacement makes sense for you. Click either link below to download and print a list of suggested questions you should discuss with your doctor.

Click here to download hip replacement questions


More on Mako

Learn more about Mako robotic-assisted surgery in this brief video produced by Stryker.