It’s an achievement that had the eyes of the medical world turning to Perth Western Australia. In December 2021 the Australian Institute of Robotic Orthopaedics (AIRO) successfully completed a world-first human cadaver application of its AIROscan™ technology.
Testing on human cadavers is an important step towards having new technology made available to help humans in need. In this case, people needing joint replacement.
AIROscan™ is a robotically-assisted system that provides real-time 3D scanning, tissue classification and positioning guidance for joint arthroplasty (procedures such as knee and hip replacement). In short, it allows surgeons to evaluate the quality of each bone cut, assess the accuracy of the joint alignment, accurately predict the fit of the implant to the bone and then optimise that procedure.
The successful study was carried out at the state-of-the-art Clinical Evaluation and Training Centre (CTEC) on the grounds of the University of Western Australia (UWA), conducted under human ethics approval by Orthopaedic Surgeon Scientists Professor Riaz Khan and Professor Daniel Fick, alongside the AIRO engineers.
“This is quite an incredible moment,” Managing Director and CEO Associate Professor Brett Robertson said, “It means that we are close to making a quantum leap in the quality of joint replacement surgery the world over. The accuracy and customisation that this technology makes possible means that people needing a new hip or knee will recover faster and enjoy problem-free joint movement for much longer.”
Testing of the prototype AIROscan™ system on human cadavers is a major step in the research and development programme of the overall robot-assisted laser joint replacement being developed by AIRO.
The Australian Institute of Robotic Orthopaedics (AIRO) is a private company developing next-generation surgical systems and implants for use in orthopaedic procedures. The advances AIRO is making in robotic-assisted laser surgery are literally at the cutting edge of global medicine, enabling the future delivery of a new generation of individualised orthopaedic prostheses that, for the first time, replicate the natural movement and feel of human joints. This technology has significant implications on the speed and comfort of the patients’ recovery and the long-term quality of their post-operative life. Young patients can return to their workplace and sporting passions sooner; older people can expect a full and normal active life with their friends and family. Importantly costly and complex revision surgeries will become a thing of the past. To meet these objectives AIRO is developing three platform technologies: