Many locals have an aversion to bone-chilling cold. But doctors at LSU Health in New Orleans are using a procedure that involves a drastic drop in temperature and it results in a dramatic reduction in post-surgery pain. It’s an innovation that could help knock the wind out of the deadly opioid addiction crisis.
“So, this is the knee, and what we can see is the knee is basically bone on bone,” said Dr. Vinod Dasa, an LSU Health New Orleans orthopedic surgeon.
Knees are critical to remaining mobile. But if they aren’t shown the appropriate respect, the result can be revenge.
“So cartilage is basically what coats the end of the long bones. If you think back to Thanksgiving, you snap open the turkey joint, you see that smooth, white, shiny stuff, imagine if I took a fork and started scraping it away. That’s called arthritis,” said Dasa.
In October of 2017, Eric Windmann had his right knee replaced. He is a patient of Dr. Dasa.
“So in a knee replacement, what we do is we trim away just the end of the bone, so we make a small cut, in some cases less than a 10 millimeters thick, and basically replace the end of the bone with a cap, a metal and plastic cap that fits on the end of the bone so that way you can move the joint freely again,” Dasa stated.
Several years ago, Windmann said he left knee received new parts.
“It was very, very painful as soon as I woke up,” he said.
The experience was much better after his recent knee surgery.
“I was in no pain. I literally did not take a pain pill the whole time I was in the hospital. I went home that night, I was able to get on a stationary bike and get the knee moving,” said Windmann.
Windmann and Dasa credit a medical procedure that literally fits in one’s hand.
“And basically within this device we place a nitrous-oxide cartridge that fits in the top,” said the doctor.
It produces an “Antarctica” type treatment.
“Cryo-neurolysis is basically freezing of nerves,” Dasa said.
Certainly ice has been used for pain for centuries. But Dr. Dasa said it is the way the Ivoera device does it that is innovative.
“Now cryo-neurolysis is taking that original concept and now actually creating an ice cube, or ice ball under the skin, and when that cold hits the nerve, it shuts the nerve off,” Dasa said.
And he said typically it’s done a week before surgery.
Image Credit: Myoscience