Now-a-days, knee replacement surgeries are increasing rapidly. There are several surgical methods depending on the severity and condition of the knee. Below are the four main types and its advantages.
Total Knee Replacement: As the name itself says, it is resurfacing the entire damaged knees and relay on the patients muscles and ligaments for support. The procedure replaces the bottom of femur and the top end of the tibia with an artificial device (prosthesis). For better understanding, we need to study what are femur and tibia. Femur is the thigh bone, which is long, heavy and strong in the entire human body; Tibia, also known as shinbone is the lower front portion of the leg. Thus, this type of surgery is performed in the end-stage of arthritis where medical management is not helpful.
Kneecap Replacement: In medical terms, it is patellofemoral arthroplasty. It is the clinical procedure where a damaged kneecap is resurfaced for better alignment and movement. In simple, kneecap or patellofemoral joint is worn out needs to be swapped. Candidates who have damaged patella and still functions in the rest of the knee can opt for kneecap replacement. Preservation of bone, low blood loss and post-operative pain, fast recovery are some of the benefits through this surgery.
Partial Knee Replacement: This type of replacement is executed when one or two compartments of the knee are damaged, leaving the healthy one aside or untouched. There are two ways for partial replacements; it is on the patient and the surgeon to decide which way is best.
Unicompartmental Partial Knee Replacement: It is an alternative for Total Knee Replacement surgery and the treatment will be done only for the damaged compartment of the knee cartilage. Doctors mostly advise patients to have partial replacement than total replacement among knee replacement options due to its advantages. It preserves tissues and bone in the knee even after the surgery and also the blood loss is low thus recovery is fast in Partial knee surgery. As there are two sides of a coin, there are risks in equal. A possibility of surgical infections and blood clots are rare complications. Patient can experience joint stiffness and doctor’s consult is necessary if extended pain is identified.
Bicompartmental partial knee replacement: Both the medial (inside) compartment and kneecap will be replaced with an implant, where the third compartment will be untouched. The surgeon need to make 3-4 incisions to the front part of knee and properly position the knee replacement implants. It is then closed and bandaged. The patient may find difficulty in performing daily activities and shape and movement may be different from usual since there is a change in knee kinematics. In the initial stages, it may lead to uneasiness and can depress the person. This type of surgery is opted when there is increased swelling and redness, persistent pain on the knee which is not curable by medication.
Complex or Revision Knee Replacement: It is the complex procedure among all replacement surgeries. During the operation, surgeon substitutes a totally failed previous knee prosthesis with a new prosthesis which involves prolonged timings, specialized pre-operating planning, implants and specialists. There are many factors for implants failure like appropriate fixation, infections, fractures, age factors. As this has to be performed with mastery techniques, consult Dr. Niraj Vora, who has cent percent positive reviews from his patients.
Every type has its own surgical methods, benefits and complications.