By Kathryn Rice

The Northwest Technical School health science classes were given the opportunity to witness, literally, cutting edge medical robotic technology in action on April 27.

Maryville High School 2004 graduate Javen Spire

Javen Spire, 2004 Maryville High School and 2008 Northwest Missouri State University graduate, gave a Skype demonstration on the Stryker Mako robotic arm system to both the morning and afternoon classes.

Spire, a Mako product specialist, demonstrated the robotic-arm assisted surgery for a partial knee replacement. The system has three applications including partial knee, total knee and total hip surgeries.

As a product specialist, Spire provides surgeons with product support and technical assistance, pre-, during and post-procedure.

The demonstration included how the computer, cameras and robotic arm work together to take off the exact amount of bone needed and how the knee is rebuilt.

Every body is different, so the system can position the implant where it is needed for the specific patient. The whole procedure can be done as an out-patient procedure and takes approximately an hour to an hour and a half.

Instructor Bing Boettner arranged the Skype session as a way for her students to see how the health field is changing and the rate at which technological advances are made.

“I learn something new every day,” Spire said. “Every time something new comes out, I have to do additional training.”

He indicated he receives additional training almost every month.

Boettner remarked that Spire is well versed in medical technology. Spire explained this was so everyone in the room knows what is being discussed.

Spire is the son of Diana and Harold Spire, Maryville. He has been employed at Stryker for five years.

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