What You Need to Know About Mako Robotic-Assisted Joint Replacement

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, affecting over 32 million adults in the US alone. Osteoarthritis can make it hard to live your daily life, as it affects the condition of your joints, most noticeably the knees, hips, and spine. Although non-surgical treatments exist, sometimes surgery might be the best choice to help relieve pain.

And when it comes to joint replacement surgery, Mako technology is a new and extremely effective form of surgery in the industry.

What Is Mako Technology?

Mako technology is a technology developed to streamline joint replacement surgeries. Mako 3D CT-based planning software is used before and during the surgery to pre-plan and then conduct the operation using a robotic arm.

How Does It Work?

Mako technology allows the surgeon to make a 3D virtual model of your joint with all its unique anatomical details. The detailed view from this model helps the surgeon create the most effective surgical plan for you. The surgeon will be able to virtually conduct the surgery and then implement the plan during the operation.

During the surgery, the Mako robotic arm guides the surgeon perfectly to the area to improve accuracy and alignment. The pre-surgical plan will be overlaid in real-time as a guide to the surgeon, along with the tracking capabilities of the robotic instrument.

The instrument prepares the bone while tracking even the small movements of the knee so it can adjust accordingly. The implant will then be placed and balanced. All instruments will be under the control of the surgeon the whole time so they can make any adjustments or changes if necessary.

Benefits of Mako Technology

1.    Personalized surgical plan

Since Mako software allows for a perfect visual model of the joint and the surgery, patients can receive a personalized pre-operative plan to ensure that the surgery is done in the most effective way possible. Mako technology can be used for partial and total knee replacements and hip replacements, making it extremely convenient as well.

2.    Minimally invasive

The Mako software guides the surgeon to the predetermined area to make precise cuts, which keeps the surgeon from going outside the boundaries. Since the operation is also completely planned out beforehand, it allows for proper placement of the implant, with potentially less blood loss. It also helps preserve more of the healthy bone and tissue.

3.    Heightened accuracy and precision

Mako robotic-arm assisted surgery allows the surgeon to perform the surgery with 2mm precision of where they need to be. The Mako system provides a real-time sensory feedback with the overlaid pre-surgical plan, which helps the surgeon make the most accurate cuts and placements.

4.    Faster recovery time

For most patients, a fast recovery time is very important. The recovery from Mako robotic-assisted surgery maybe shorter than a traditional joint replacement surgery due to its high level of precision. Although the exact recovery period depends on your overall health and other factors, patients can generally return to their daily activities in 1–4 weeks.



If you are experiencing pain, stiffness, or discomfort in your knee or hip, get in touch with Dr. Matthew D. Barber, M.D. by calling us at (251) 410-3600 or through our website. We would love to help you discuss your options, both surgical and non-surgical, and see if Mako technology is right for you.


While Dr. Barber focuses exclusively on the management of knee and hip problems with a focus on joint replacement procedures, he is proud to be a source of information for patients and has several specialist partners at ALABAMA ORTHOPAEDIC CLINIC who are available to treat any orthopaedic condition.