GPS Guided Surgery

Orthopaedic Specialists

Orthopedics & Sports Medicine located in the greater Nashville, Tennessee Area

Guided personalized surgery (GPS) uses leading-edge technology, the ExactechGPS® to provide long-lasting knee and shoulder replacements. Brandon Downs, MD, and the joint replacement team at Orthopaedic Specialists pair their surgical expertise with the ExactechGPS computer system to ensure your joint replacement is precisely aligned and produces optimal movement and function. If you suffer from ongoing knee or shoulder pain and you’d like to learn more about GPS guided surgery, call one of the offices in Nashville, Dickson, Ashland City, Kingston Springs, Centerville and Gallatin, Tennessee, or schedule an appointment online.

GPS Guided Surgery Q & A

What is GPS guided surgery?

When you need a total knee or shoulder replacement, your overall results depend on how accurately the prosthetic pieces are aligned within the joint. ExactechGPS® provides real-time visual guidance during replacement surgery, allowing Dr. Downs to precisely implant your new joint.

What happens during joint replacement surgery?

Whether you need a knee replacement or shoulder replacement surgery, the steps are essentially the same. Dr. Downs removes damaged cartilage and reshapes the surface of the bones in your knee, or in the shoulder socket. In a shoulder replacement, the rounded top of the arm is usually removed. Then Dr. Downs replaces all the parts with prosthetic components.

The challenge during joint replacement surgery is preserving as much healthy bone as possible and ensuring that the remaining bone is accurately prepared to accommodate the shape of the prosthetic components. That’s where GPS makes all the difference.

How does ExactechGPS improve my joint replacement surgery?

Prior to your surgery, the ExactechGPS takes a CT scan of your knee or shoulder, creating a precise 3D image that the surgical team at Orthopaedic Specialists uses to plan your joint replacement.

While the plan is important, it’s not written in stone. Rather, it’s refined throughout your surgery as the ExactechGPS system continuously scans the joint to produce real-time images and provide an exceptional view of the entire joint. Dr. Downs also places trackers on the bones that send detailed information about the joint’s anatomical structure and movement to the ExactechGPS computer.

Dr. Downs uses the precise images and information from the trackers to adjust the amount of tissue that’s removed, preserving as much healthy bone as possible, and to attach the prosthetic components.

Studies show that the lifespan and function of a joint replacement change when the prosthesis is misaligned by even a tiny degree. The risk of implant failure increases when the prosthesis is outside three degrees of alignment. With ExcatechGPS, Dr. Downs performs joint replacements with less than one degree of variability.

What type of joint prosthesis might I receive during GPS guided surgery?

A variety of prosthetic shoulder and knee implants are available and the type you receive is based on your overall health and activity goals. However, Dr. Downs has the option of pairing GPS surgery with Exactech’s Equinoxe® joint replacement system. The Equinoxe prosthesis is adjusted during your surgery to match your bone structure.

If you suffer from ongoing knee and shoulder pain and would like to learn more about GPS guided surgery, call Orthopaedic Specialists or schedule an appointment online.