5 Bramblebush Drive, Falmouth MA 02540
FAX: 508-548-5239
Robert Wilsterman, MD: Orthopedic Specialists


Knee Replacement with Dr. Wilsterman

TruMatch Custom Fit Total Knee Replacement/Minimally Invasive - Rapid Recovery Surgery/Arthroscopic Surgery/ Trauma/ Conservative Treatments

Inside a healthy knee, all parts work together to allow the joint to move in an effortless and pain-free way. However, injuries, wear and tear, and other conditions can disrupt the normal functioning of a knee joint, which can lead to discomfort, muscle instability, and decreased mobility. Because the general public is living longer, with active and healthier lifestyles, joint replacement is being performed in greater numbers. Dr. Wilsterman is responding to this increased demand with progressive technology and techniques for the treatment of knees.

Why Choose Dr. Wilsterman and his Team at Orthopedic Specialists for Treatment of the Knee?

Dr. Wilsterman is an ex-Rugby player who has had his share of knee issues. Because of his own experience with knee pain, he loves to make people with knee injuries feel better. In an effort to provide his patients with the best possible care, Dr. Wilsterman has identified, sought out, and mastered complex surgical procedures that he brings exclusively to Falmouth Hospital.
That said, not everyone “of a certain age” with knee pain needs a new joint. In fact, not every patient with knee pain needs expensive diagnostic testing, such as MRI's. Most times, Dr. Wilsterman and his Physician Assistants, Mark Colucci and Brian Bird, diagnose knee conditions and injuries after a physical exam or an on-site x-ray. But sometimes, when there are no options left, Dr. Wilsterman will recommend joint replacement surgery. The goal of a total knee replacement is to relieve pain. It may also help to restore motion and straighten the limb. When the cartilage has worn away, an artificial knee (called a prosthesis) can take its place. Only the surface of the joint is removed - the arthritic ends of the bones are shaved off and replaced with new metal and plastic surfaces. This procedure recreates the normal function of the knee. While the idea of getting an artificial knee joint may be frightening to some, it is a very safe and effective medical procedure.

TruMatch Custom Cut Knee Replacement

TruMatch Custom Fit Knee Replacement, in which the surface of your knee is scanned and matched, is a great example of the cutting-edge surgical technology that Dr. Wilsterman offers his patients. Every knee is unique and the same solution may not necessarily be right for everyone. That's why Dr. Wilsterman offers TruMatch personalized instruments, designed specifically for your anatomy. Before your procedure, a three-dimensional computerized scan of your leg is taken to create customized surgical guides. These guides, or cutting blocks, allow Dr. Wilsterman to achieve consistency in placement and positioning which is crucial to the overall performance of your implant.
Picture it this way -- if you don't get an alignment after putting on new tires on your car, you'll eventually see uneven wear and tear, possibly even tire failure. The same idea applies to your knee replacement. A misalignment as slight as three degrees can lead to uneven wear, instability and increased risk of revision surgery following knee replacement. Traditional knee replacement surgery does not offer this additional scrutiny regarding placement and positioning. That's why many surgeons and hospitals are moving toward this technology. It's the wave of the future in knee replacement technology and Dr. Wilsterman is the only surgeon at Falmouth Hospital to offer this procedure.
Another advantage of TruMatch Knee Replacement is that the procedure is completed in less time than traditional surgery of this nature. Less time in the OR means less anesthesia, which leads to faster recovery.

Arthroscopic Surgery of the Knee

While most of his patients don't require a trip to the operating room, the fact is that Dr. Wilsterman does more knee arthroscopy than anyone on the Upper Cape. Arthroscopy is a surgical procedure in which a joint (arthro-) is viewed (-scopy) using a small camera. Arthroscopy gives Dr. Wilsterman a clear view of the inside of the knee. It helps him diagnose and treat knee problems. Almost all arthroscopic knee surgery is done on an outpatient basis.

Arthroscopy of the knee is most commonly used for:

  • Removal or repair of torn meniscal cartilage
  • Reconstruction of a torn anterior cruciate ligament
  • Trimming of torn pieces of articular cartilage
  • Removal of loose fragments of bone or cartilage
  • Removal of inflamed synovial tissue
Arthroscopy is done through small incisions. During the procedure, Dr. Wilsterman inserts an arthroscope (a small camera instrument about the size of a pencil) into an injured knee joint. The arthroscope sends the image to a television monitor. On the monitor, Dr. Wilsterman can see the structures of the knee in great detail. He uses arthroscopy to feel, repair or remove damaged tissue. Technical advances have led to high definition monitors and high-resolution cameras. Dr. Wilsterman utilizes these arthroscopic instruments and progressive techniques as very effective tools for treating his patients' knee injuries.

How Does a Healthy Knee Work?

The knee joint functions like a hinge at the junction of two bones, the femur (thigh bone) and the tibia (shin). The ends of the bones are covered with a thick cushion of hard, white cartilage. This cartilage protects the underlying bones from rubbing together – a condition that produces the pain and inflammation of arthritis.

How Do I Know If I Need Knee Replacement Surgery?

There are several reasons why Dr. Wilsterman may recommend knee replacement surgery. Patients who benefit from this procedure have:
  • knee pain that limits everyday activities, such as walking, climbing stairs or bending
  • knee pain that continues while resting, either day or night
  • knee pain that comes and goes
  • pain in one or many parts of their bodies
  • stiffness in a knee that limits the ability to move or lift the leg
  • inadequate pain relief from anti-inflammatory drugs, physical therapy or walking supports
Dr. Wilsterman and his team at Orthopedic Specialists can evaluate your condition and tell you if joint replacement would be right for you.

Joint Replacement Seminars

Dr. Wilsterman frequently gives seminars on joint replacement surgery, with talking points that include:
  • Who is a candidate for knee replacement surgery?
  • How does the procedure work and what are its benefits?
  • What is the healing process like and what are the correct exercises?