Partial Knee Replacement
Partial Knee Replacement: Procedure and Recovery
Partial knee replacement, also known as unicompartmental knee arthroplasty, is a surgical procedure wherein the damaged part of the knee cartilage, due to osteoarthritis, is replaced with a prosthesis.
What is osteoarthritis?
When the articular cartilage within the knee joint wears away, this condition is called osteoarthritis. The role of the articular cartilage is to prevent one bone from scraping against the other. It allows for smooth and stable movement of the knee and acts as a shock absorber, to protect against any unusual movement or injury. Due to osteoarthritis, the cartilage becomes thinner over time and due to this, the joint becomes inflamed. You might experience stiffness and pain in the joint and your range of motion might become limited.
Who is a candidate for partial knee replacement?
People who are suffering from lateral or medial knee osteoarthritis can be candidates for partial knee replacement surgery. Generally, medial knee joint degeneration is the most common deformity of arthritis. A few other factors that might be considered are:
- Persistent knee pain despite taking anti-inflammatory drugs and maintain your ideal weight
- Damage to only one compartment in the knee joint
- Sufficient range of knee motion
- Intact anterior cruciate ligament
- Stable knee
- Angulation of deformity
Partial knee replacement vs Total knee replacement
Whenever possible, partial knee replacement is preferred over total knee replacement procedure due to various reasons:
- Better range of motion and knee function is preserved because healthy tissue and bone in the knee are preserved
- Loss of blood is less, as compared to total knee replacement surgery
- Faster recovery of knee motion
Germanten Hospital in Hyderabad is the number one center in India for knee replacement surgeries. At first, your doctor will discuss your medical history and ask questions regarding your symptoms and general health. Then, he or she will perform a physical exam to determine the location of your pain. If it is entirely located either on the outside portion of the inside portion of the knee, you may be a good candidate for a partial knee replacement procedure. However, if the pain is spread throughout the entire knee or if it is situated in front of your knee, under the kneecap, you might require total knee replacement surgery.
Apart from this, your doctor will also check your knee’s range of motion and the quality of the ligament. If the ligament feels weak or torn or if the knee feels too stiff, then your doctor might not recommend unicompartmental knee surgery. To better visualize the extent of the damage in the knee, X-rays and MRI scans may also be performed.
Once it is determined that you are a good candidate for partial knee surgery, you will be admitted to the hospital on the day of surgery. Your doctor will first discuss with you anesthesia options and verify the surgical site. Then, your surgeon will make an incision at the front of the knee to examine all three compartments of the knee. This is done to verify that the ligaments are intact and the damage to the cartilage is confined to one compartment only. After verifying, your surgeon will remove the damaged cartilage from the targeted compartment of the knee. This cartilage and bone are replaced with metal implants that recreate the surface of the joint. To create a gliding surface between the two metal components, a plastic spacer is inserted.
At Germanten Hospital, partial knee replacement surgery is performed using a robotic arm. It is one of the most advanced and precise medical technologies. The team of expert doctors at Germanten Hospital is led by Dr Mir Jawad Zar Khan. He has performed more than 10000 surgeries and has advanced training in the field of orthopedics from the USA and Germany. To celebrate his achievements and efforts, he was awarded the title of Best Doctor by the ex-CM of Joint Andhra Pradesh & Former Governor Tamilnadu, Shri Roshaiah Garu in 2018. In 2019, he was honored with the Vaida Ratna Award by the Honourable Health Minister of Telangana, Shree Etala Rajendra.
The infrastructure at NABH accredited Germanten Hospital is world-class. With state-of-the-art facilities, the hospital has more than 200 beds and a highly advanced laminar airflow in each operation theatre for total infection control. We aim to provide our patients with the best treatment and patient care. In 2019, Times of India graded it as the Best Emerging Orthopedic Hospital. It was also named the Best Orthopedic Hospital in South India by Economic Times in 2021.
Usually, patients are discharged after one to three days of the surgery. You might feel some pain, for which your doctor might prescribe some pain-relief medication. You will be allowed to put weight on your leg immediately after the surgery. It might be a few weeks or months after the surgery for you to walk without any assistance. Patients can resume their daily activities after six weeks of surgery.
After your surgery, you will need physical therapy to regain your mobility and strength in the knee. A team of physiotherapists at Germanten Hospital will work with you to perform rehabilitation exercises for this purpose.