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Minimally Invasive Knee Replacement

What is Minimally Invasive Knee Replacement?

Patient Comments
  • Knee replacement surgery is one of the most successful modern orthopedic procedures. (Orthopedics is the branch of medicine dealing with the bones, muscles, and joints.) Knee replacement surgeries use modern biomaterials. Biomaterials are synthetic or partially synthetic materials that are used to take the place of parts within the body. Use of these modern materials has allowed knee replacements to last well in appropriately selected patients. However, pain and other side effects associated with the surgical procedure remain a concern for many people. In particular, people are concerned about the uncomfortable physical therapy that is often required after knee replacement surgery to regain muscle strength and mobility.
  • New and improved anesthesia techniques, as well as pain management medications and methods, have reduced pain and improved recovery after knee replacement surgery. Any method of speeding up recovery after surgery is desirable, as many people are anxious to return to their day-to-day activities.
  • Minimally invasive knee replacement surgery is a term that is commonly used to describe several modifications of conventional knee replacement surgeries. These modified procedures are designed to reduce the tissue trauma associated with surgery. The goal is to reduce postoperative discomfort, speed up discharge, and reduce the need for physical therapy.
  • Total knee replacement surgery is different from partial knee replacement surgery. Partial knee replacement surgery is often referred to as unicompartmental knee replacement. In partial knee replacement, only the inner side or outter compartment of the knee joint is replaced, as the name would suggest. Usually, the inner compartment of the knee wears out first. In some people, just this part of the affected joint is replaced. Partial knee replacement is performed with small incisions. The ligaments and other structures in the knee are preserved. In partial knee replacement, recovery is faster and the scar is smaller than for total knee replacement. However, few people meet the strict requirements for partial knee replacement. Only 5% or fewer of people who have knee arthritis are good candidates for partial knee replacement procedures.
  • For some people with knee arthritis, a unispacer might be appropriate. A unispacer is a device inserted into the diseased knee joint. It acts like a spacer, or shim, to separate the worn-out knee surfaces. As with partial knee replacement procedures, few people actually meet the requirements for a device like the unispacer. For most people with advanced knee arthritis, if pain is not relieved with other treatments, a total knee replacement that replaces all of the diseased cartilage is the best long-term option.
Last Reviewed 11/17/2017
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Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Minimally Invasive Knee Replacement:

Minimally Invasive Knee Replacement - Patient Experience

Did you receive minimally invasive knee replacement surgery? Please describe your experience.

Minimally Invasive Knee Replacement - Results

Were you satisfied with the results of your minimally invasive knee replacement? Why or why not?

Deciding on Knee Replacement Surgery

  • The decision you and your doctor make depends on how much pain and disability you have. It also depends on your age, health, and activity level.
  • Most people have this surgery only when they can no longer control knee pain with other treatments and when the pain disrupts their lives.
  • Rehab after this surgery means doing daily exercises for several weeks.
  • Most knee replacements last for at least 15 years. You may need to have the knee replaced again

SOURCE: Healthwise

Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Total Knee Arthroplasty »

Total knee replacement in some form has been practiced for over 50 years.

Read More on Medscape Reference »

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