Say Hello to Dr. Franky Davis & the Mako Surgical Robot
Colquitt Regional Medical Center has been providing healthcare services to the citizens of Moultrie since 1939. Since then, they have continued to provide care to their patients through the use of updated technologies that have helped the health system forwadly progress. In addition to having over 100 medical providers and 1,350 employees, Colquitt Regional Medical Centers welcomes in a new orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Franky Davis.
Originally from Macon, Dr. Davis was introduced to orthopedics early on as an eighth grader, due to sports related injuries. Years later during his senior year of high school, he had the opportunity to do an internship through Senior Projects, spending six weeks with a hand surgeon, sparking his interest even more. With his father being a dentist, Dr. Davis saw first hand the pro’s and con’s of working in health care and building relationships with patients. This drove his passion to help those with a medical need. From there, Dr. Davis attended The University of Georgia (UGA) on the pre-med track with orthopedics being the main goal.
“I was able to get exposed to orthopedics pretty early and was very interested in surgery and the opportunity to fix people with my hands,” said Dr. Davis.
After graduating from UGA, Dr. Davis attended four years of medical school at the Medical College of Georgia (MCG), located in Augusta. After MCG, he completed a five year residency at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and finished up his training at Erlanger Hospital.
Being a South Georgia boy originally and his wife, Anna, being from the area, Dr. Davis, along with his wife and two children, moved back to their southern roots and made Moultrie and Colquitt Regional their home.
“Being from Macon, I’ve always had a tie to Georgia and my family still lives there,” said Dr. Davis. “I really enjoy small town life. I’ve always thought small time life fits my speed. I’m a family man with two kids and wanted to have a community that would be able to rally around that and help me achieve my goal of being successful raising two kids. I felt Colquitt was a great community for that.”
Dr. Davis describes the transition as “great” and “slower paced”, but he’s settling in and making new friends in the community. Being in a smaller town, one is bound to run into people you know, and he has run into his patients from time-to-time, something that is new to him.
“Starting your job is like drinking water from a fire hydrant,” said Dr. Davis. “Just learning the logistics of a new institution, the medical record and making the transition from being in a well residency scenario to being out on your own in a more community based hospital is an adjustment but it’s been enjoyable for sure. I think it’ll be a good fit for us moving forward.”
Not only is Colquitt Regional saying hello to their newest addition to the hospital, but they’re also saying hello to the Mako Surgical Robot, being the only hospital in the state south of Macon to have the technology. Dr. Davis spoke to Health Life and gave us all the details on this great medical tool.
Tyrah Walker: What exactly is the Mako Surgical Robot?
Dr. Franky Davis: The Mako Surgical Robot is a robotic arm that utilizes preoperative CT scans to create a 3D mapped model of the patient’s anatomy. It’s used for total hip replacement, total knee replacement, in addition to partial knee replacement. I use it specifically for total knee replacement.
TW: What is the benefit of the Mako Surgical Robot?
FD: The benefit is that it allows for the preoperative plan to be utilized for accurate implant sizing and more accurate implant placement. Total knee replacement has been around for a long time and what it does is you replace the femur bone cartilage, the tibia bone cartilage and the kneecap bone cartilage with medal and plastic parts. That has been a successful operation for years but what is required of the surgeon is you have to use your knowledge of anatomic landmarks to make an educated guess. You can be very accurate with that but it is still an educated guess as to where those parts need to go, as well as how the knee is balanced with regards to the soft tissue envelope and ligaments. What the Mako in my opinion does, it allows for accurate preoperative planning, accurate dynamic intraoperative assessment of the knees balance and then placement of the implants where they need to go accurately in a timely fashion.
TW: What else does it help with?
FD: Additionally what it does is it minimizes the amount of soft tissue dissection that you have to do to perform the replacement and the postoperative pain, in my opinion a little bit less. The early postoperative recovery with regards to range in motion is a little bit quicker and a little bit easier to tolerate. All those are benefits. The robot doesn’t do the surgery. It’s basically a robot arm that’s utilized to make sure that the saw blade cuts the accurate location that has been predetermined and determined during the case to be the perfect position for the implants. And that’s in my opinion a safer way to do it. It eliminates the risks of cutting structures that don’t need to be cut but also allows for the appropriate cuts to be made accurately.
TW: Pretty cool that the hospital has this!
FD: I think it’s a big benefit for the small community based hospital to have the front runner technology and robotic total knee replacement and allow for the people in this community to get this medical technology without having to drive to Atlanta or drive beyond two hours.
TW: What are the requirements to qualify for this technology? Does insurance cover it?
FD: It’s covered by insurance. One thing that is required is the preoperative CT scan. It’s not necessarily something that would typically be required for total knee replacement but that is insurance covered and is basically bundled into the service offered by the company that the implant is utilized. It doesn’t increase the cost to the patient to receive that level of service, based on my understanding. It benefits anyone who needs a total knee replacement. If you qualify for a knee replacement, then this is in my opinion one of the better ways to get that done.
One of the things that Dr. Davis wants people to understand is that total knee replacement is a major surgery. One must ask themselves, has their quality of life been inhabited enough by the problem? He states that no one should be talked into having such a major surgery and everything, including risks, should be addressed to the patient.
When it comes to the Mako, Dr. Davis says it will continue to spread across the globe, in fact it’s already happening. There are different companies coming out with their own version of robotics. Pretty soon, it will be the norm.
“This is pushing the industry standard and I think the other major companies are following suit and that will eventually become the standard of care,” said Dr. Davis.
A message Dr. Davis leaves with his patients: “Don’t let fear be the reason why you suffer,” said Dr. Davis. “Come in and see an orthopedic surgeon and just hear what they have to say, have them evaluate you and determine if they’re willing to treat you conservatively and evaluate how this is affecting your everyday life.”
When Dr. Davis is not performing surgical procedures, he enjoys playing with his children, physical fitness, playing golf, and playing the electric guitar.
Written by Tyrah Walker