Smith & Nephew Brings Robotic Navigation to JOURNEY UNI Knee Procedure

Smith & Nephew has announced a new commercial agreement with Blue Belt Technologies (BBT), makers of the Navio® Orthopaedic Surgical System, claimed to be the next generation of orthopaedic robotic surgical navigation. Under this agreement, surgeons using the Navio system will be able to implant Smith & Nephew’s JOURNEY™ UNI partial knee.


Last year we covered the news that Stryker had snapped up Mako surgical, with its robotic knee joint resurfacing system. Like night follows day, knee joint makers will all ultimately jump on the bandwagon in the quest for high ground in optimising the procedure. Just look at the way they’ve all (including Smith & Nephew) signed up to partner with Orthosensor and its Verasense knee balancing system.

BBT’s Navio System provides surgeons with precise surgical planning and handheld robotic-controlled bone preparation for use with partial knee replacements. Through its advanced, intraoperative navigation, the system guides the surgeon in optimally placing the implant and balancing the knee in order to deliver consistent results. And, from a cost-savings perspective, the Navio System does not require the added time and expense of preoperative CT images and claims to be less than half the cost of its leading competitor.

The JOURNEY UNI implant is an advanced alternative to total knee replacement for those patients whose osteoarthritis damage is limited to only one side of their knee. Unlike total knee replacement, this partial knee allows patients to keep all of their knee ligaments. Also, because it is made with Smith & Nephew’s proprietary OXINIUM™ alloy, the JOURNEY UNI knee offers the potential for reduced implant wear – a leading cause of revision surgery.

Company comments

“Combining the benefits of our JOURNEY UNI implant with the robotic precision offered by Navio is a very exciting prospect for us,” says Scott Elliott, Senior Vice President, Orthopaedic Reconstruction for Smith & Nephew. “A concern with partial knees is that they can be difficult to align and balance. Thanks to this agreement, surgeons now have a navigation system that helps alleviate that surgical concern, as well as a partial knee that directly addresses implant durability.”

Source: Smith & Nephew plc., PR Newswire

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