Partial vs total knee replacement
Knee replacement of any sort is often a last resort since there are many non-surgical treatment options available. An orthopedic surgeon decides the best treatment due to the degree of cartilage and bone damage in the knee. Simply put, the surgery will replace either part of the joint or all of the joint with prosthetics. Partial knee replacements, known as unicompartmental joint replacement, have fewer risks. The surgery has minor bleeding and a quicker recovery time. However, with minimally invasive techniques, both procedures are safe and effective.
Should you consider unicompartmental joint replacement surgery?
Over 790,000 knee replacement surgeries occur in the US every year. Unicompartmental knee surgery should be considered since the treatment replaces only part of the knee. The surgery happens when the pain is limited to part of the knee and is especially helpful for patients with osteoarthritis. In cases of stiffness and ligament damage, surgery may also be recommended. Unicompartmental knee replacements have great results in both young and older patients.
It’s all about location
Unicompartmental knee surgery often depends on the location of the pain. If the pain is on the inside or the outside of the knee, then the doctor may recommend unicompartmental joint replacement. If the pain is in the entire knee or the front knee, a total replacement may be best. After a full recovery, most patients report reduced pain, improved range of motion, and high satisfaction.
Risks of unicompartmental joint replacement surgery
There are drawbacks to unicompartmental joint replacement. Even with surgery, some persons may not experience a decrease in symptoms. Some may need further surgery as the damage can extend further than the location of the partial knee replacement. Other side effects include instability, infection, and nerve damage. Luckily, these side effects are rare, and the surgeon will discuss any surgery concerns with the patient.
End the pain when bending
After months of knee pain, some patients need a treatment that works. Sometimes, the only solution is to replace the joint. The activity level, range of motion, age, and change in knee size will determine the type of replacement that will work. Unicompartmental surgery provides several benefits while not replacing all knee components. To find the right treatment for knee pain, speak with a doctor today.