Abrazo Scottsdale Campus was the first to use a new robotic surgery partial and total knee replacement procedure, adding to its growing list of complex robotic surgery offerings.  James Chow, MD, a hip and knee specialist at Abrazo Scottsdale Campus, performed the Valley’s first patient procedure using the newly developed CORI Surgical System. 

Dr. Chow helped design and develop the robotic surgical system, which includes an artificial intelligence component that helps physicians to more accurately place and size implants. The hand-held  technology also enables surgeons to sculpt the patient’s knee more rapidly and more efficiently. 

“The CORI system enables the surgeon to accurately predict how the knee is going to perform when parts of it are replaced. This is done during surgery, before the new joint is implanted. The artificial intelligence platform allows the surgeon to take the knee through its range of motion, and stress it throughout the entire range,” Dr. Chow explained. “That allows us to make subtle adjustments in implant sizes and positions in order to get a desired outcome, before we’ve even prepared the bone. It makes the procedure very predictable, very measurable.”

For his first surgery using the new system, Dr. Chow performed an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL)-preserving total knee replacement – an advanced procedure that spares every ligament in the knee including the ACL – on Jeff Gordon.  The 58-year-old “blew out” his knee in a skiing accident while in college. Several subsequent procedures over the years failed to fix his knee.

“I’ve had pain for 38 years. I never regained full extension of my leg after the accident,” said Gordon. “I came to Dr. Chow to get my knee fixed because I admired his skill with robotics. The outcome of the surgery he performed on me has been phenomenal so far.  My range of motion is improving.  I can already get my leg straighter than I could for 38 years. I’ve had some pain and swelling after the surgery, but I expected them to be a lot worse. It’s nothing like the constant dull ache and sharp pain I had before the procedure. I’m very impressed with both Dr. Chow and the hospital.” 

Abrazo Scottsdale Campus, which is focused on specialized surgical procedures, now offers several types of robotic surgical technology in a single location. Robot-assisted surgery allows minimally invasive techniques that use smaller incisions than traditional open surgery and adds precision and accuracy to the surgeon’s movements. 

“Abrazo Scottsdale Campus is a leading surgical hospital and we’re committed to providing our community with a broad range of robot-assisted surgical options,” said Ed Staren, the hospital’s interim CEO.