Step 1 – MRI scan
Your surgeon will need you to go through a very detailed MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) scan of your knee. The MRI scanner is a highly sensitive device that enables your clinical team to carefully look at the structures within your knee. Using advanced scanning programs, 2D and 3D scans of your knee will be applied that will enable a detailed computerised reconstruction of your knee to be produced.
The scan will be anonymised and uploaded confidentially to the Episurf web-based ordering system called μiFidelity.
Step 2 – Damage Marking Report
Based on the MR images, a virtual model of your knee joint is constructed. This model helps us to assess the cartilage and bone damage within your knee. Once your virtual knee model is finalised and the exact extent of your damage has been assessed, the Episurf team can propose a unique solution for your defect, based on the amount of damage found. This solution will then be included in a damage marking report. The report will be communicated to your surgeon and changes can be made to meet your personal needs and requirements.
Step 3 – Manufacturing
As soon as your surgeon has approved the damage marking report and confirmed the treatment for your unique cartilage problem, the Episealer implant, the guide tool Epiguide and additional instrumentation for your procedure will be designed and produced.
To ensure a perfect fit, your Episealer is precisely engineered according to your anatomy and your area of joint damage. Therefore it will only fit you. The implant is designed based on the depth and width of the damaged area, its position within the knee and the original surface curvature of the affected area. It is then manufactured from high-grade medical materials and special coatings are applied to the area of the implant that will be in contact with your bone. These coatings enable your body to grow onto the implant and keep it firmly in place. The top is polished to an ultra-smooth finish to ensure a gliding motion within your knee joint.
In order to precisely target the area of damage, the personalised guide tool Epiguide is produced, that will enable your surgeon to place the Episealer in precisely the right position. This guide is manufactured using 3D printing technology and will only lock onto your individual anatomy. This will allow your surgeon to prepare the bone to accept your implant in the right spot.
Step 4 – Surgery
The Episealer surgery is performed under general anaesthesia. Your surgeon will start by carefully opening your knee. Once the knee is open, the personalised Epiguide and instrument kit will be used to predictably position your Episealer. Thanks to this specific kit, the Episealer procedure is simple and straight-forward.