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World-First Study to Test Performance of Robot Hip Surgeons Against Humans

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 12 Jul 2022
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Image: The world-first RACER-Hip Study will give new insight into the value of robotic assisted surgery (Photo courtesy of Pexels)
Image: The world-first RACER-Hip Study will give new insight into the value of robotic assisted surgery (Photo courtesy of Pexels)

Robotic assisted hip and knee replacement surgery has increased rapidly over the last three years. Robotic systems are being introduced and presented to the public as innovative best practice. In robotic assisted hip replacement surgery, a robotic arm prepares the bone and inserts the components to a pre-programmed three-dimensional plan. It is thought using a robot to perform the surgery allows more precise, consistent surgical techniques and this may help to reduce variation and prevent poor outcomes and complications that can require redo surgery. However, there is currently little evidence to show that these systems are better than conventional surgery. Now, for the first time, robots will have their surgical skills put to the test as researchers trial their use in hip replacement surgery. Pitting them against their human counterparts, the aim is to determine whether using robots results in better outcomes from hip replacement surgery.

The world-first RACER-Hip Study to be run jointly by the University of Warwick (Coventry, UK) and the Royal Orthopedic Hospital Birmingham (Birmingham, UK) will give new insight into the value of robotic assisted surgery. The RACER-Hip joins the RACER-Knee study which began recruitment 12 months ago and is helping answer the same questions for knee replacement surgery. For the RACER-Hip Study, equal numbers of participants will be randomized to each treatment group to find out which surgical technique results in better outcomes. This will include asking questions about people’s ability to complete activities and their quality of life in the long-term and will also find out which method provides the best value.

“Robotic technology has the potential to revolutionize hip replacement surgery, however the first step to this is understanding whether it can help enhance the care surgeons provide,” said Dr. Peter Wall, a surgeon from the Royal Orthopedic Hospital Birmingham which will be leading the study.

“The research will help orthopedic surgeons across the world to better understand the most effective tools for performing hip replacement surgery and ensure the very best outcomes for their patients,” added Professor Ed Davis, from the Royal Orthopedic Hospital Birmingham.

Related Links:
University of Warwick
Royal Orthopedic Hospital Birmingham 

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