Nicholas Spiller | Knee replacement

Nicholas Spiller

Cosmetic Surgery, Knee Surgery

“I was reassured by the accuracy of the technology”

Former RAF Officer and fighter pilot, Nicholas Spiller, 76, was the first patient at The Horder Centre to undergo total knee replacement surgery with the assistance of the ROSA Knee System (the cutting-edge robotic technology now available to self-pay patients) under consultant orthopaedic surgeon Mr Sam Rajaratnam. 

He explains: Ten months ago at Christmas I noticed pain developing in my knee.  My GP initially told me to go home and rub on Ibuprofen Gel.  Over the next five weeks the pain became much worse and, on my second visit to the GP, it was a very different diagnosis. I was told it was highly likely that I would need knee replacement surgery and that the first step under the NHS system was a referral to see a physiotherapist I fear the NHS must be over-stretched as I am still waiting for this referral.

At this point I had developed a crunching sensation in my knee and was taking stronger and stronger pain killers. Whilst chatting at a local picnic over the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee weekend, a friend recommended The Horder Centre, saying it was the only place to go in Sussex for a joint replacement It was at this point that we decided to change pathways and investigate a self-pay procedure; after extensive research we decided on Mr Sam Rajaratnam, due to his excellent reputation and his specialist skill in knee surgery.

“On my first consultation with Mr Rajaratnam, we discussed the possibility of using the ROSA knee system and he explained how the robotic technology would assist him in the positioning of the implant by using very precise data; I was reassured by how it would maximise the accuracy of the implant. He was exceptionally confident about it, and clearly explained the benefits of the system to me. We made the decision to proceed with the surgery using the ROSA robotic technology.  I had no apprehension about the procedure. He is a wonderfully competent surgeon and an extremely kind and gentle man, I felt I was in good hands.

“The surgery went very smoothly, and the pain afterwards was not as bad as I had been anticipating. The Horder Centre really impressed me; it is practically designed with no unnecessary frills. The nurses were all first class (my thanks particularly to Lily, Joli and Edouard) and the physiotherapists had me moving hours after my surgery.  I could really feel the benefit of the physiotherapy sessions.  I was walking without crutches within 4 weeks of surgery.

“At ten weeks, I was back gardening, and am looking forward to a much more active life.  In particular, to be able to enjoy fully and be more active with our 8 grandchildren, 5 of whom live in America.  We hope to visit the US grandchildren soon – it will be good to take to the skies again - if only as a passenger!” 


“I am delighted that Nicholas has recovered well from his joint replacement surgery. His recovery epitomises the concept of ‘rapid recovery’ and the ‘ROSA-Persona personalised knee solution’, allowing for accurate custom fitting of implants with bespoke limb alignment which are unique to each patient”.

Samuel Rajartanam, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon

Mr Samuel Rajaratnam

Mr Samuel Rajaratnam

He is the Director of Orthopaedics and Head of Department of Knee Surgery at the Schoen Clinic in London, and also runs a successful practice at The Horder Centre, Crowborough and occasionally at the McIndoe Centre in East Grinstead.

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The Horder Centre is an award-winning Centre of Excellence that offers patients a unique therapeutic environment. Specifically designed for orthopaedic surgery, our facilities include a physiotherapy inpatient gym and courtyard gardens designed by clinical experts to enhance recovery. Finance options available.

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