Knee replacement

Definition

Total replacement

Knee replacement can relieve the pain and restore movement by replacing the damaged knee joint with an artificial joint. Total knee replacement can be performed when there are severe degenerative changes on medial, lateral, and anterior (patellofemoral) sides of the knee.

Partial replacement

Partial replacement can be performed when only the medial or lateral side of the knee has severe arthritis. It can be useful to many Korean patients who have arthritis only on the medial side due to the lifestyle. Moreover, it preserves normal tissues including ligaments and has less bone resection.

Indication

▶ Total replacement

  • Severe degenerative arthritis

▶ Partial replacement

  • Patients around their 60s who do not have many routine activities
  • Severe arthritis on the medial or lateral side
  • Partial joint damage of young patients

Procedure

It is very important to insert the artificial joint to align the axis of hip joint, knee, and ankle to be straight. Proper alignment would minimize the wear of the artificial joint, avoiding the re-replacement of the degenerated artificial joint. These days, computer navigation systems, which recognize the structure of the joint and calculate the location and degree of bone cutting, helps increase the life of the artificial joint.

  • 1.Check the joint surface after minimal incision
  • 2.Confirm the location and the degree of cutting and remove the bone
  • 3.Insert the artificial joint on the cut joint surface using bone cement
  • 4.Insert artificial cartilage between the joints and suture

Duration

Approximately 1-1.5 hours (may vary)

Hospital stay and Precautions

Approximately 12-14 days

  • After discharge, raise the legs, wearing compression stockings and receiving cold massage for 20-30 minutes can help with minimizing edema.
  • Keep the wound clean and dry, and disinfect as necessary.
  • No showering allowed before removing stitches.
  • Edema lasting for about 3-6 months is common. Keep giving cold massages and keeping the legs raised.
  • Visit hospital if symptoms appear that could be attributable to thrombosis, such as difficult breathing, chest pain, and calf pain.
  • Avoid any exercise that places burden on the replaced knee, such as tennis, badminton, soccer, baseball, jumping, skiing, and weight lifting.