Knee replacement surgery, also known as arthroplasty, is an operation that involves replacing a damaged, worn or diseased knee with an artificial joint. At OrthTeam Centre, your expert orthopaedic consultant will remove damaged parts of your knee and replace them with an artificial joint (a prosthesis) to relieve pain and improve your mobility, so you can enjoy a more comfortable life.
A knee replacement is a very common procedure performed most often on patients between the ages of 60 and 80.
There are two types of knee replacement; full and partial. A total replacement routinely takes between one and three hours, in which both sides of your knee joint are replaced. The surgeon makes an incision to expose the kneecap, which is then moved aside so that the knee joint behind it can be accessed.
The damaged ends of your thigh and shin bones are removed, and the ends are measured and shaped to fit the prosthetic replacement. The end of the thigh and shin bones are replaced by pieces of metal.
Finally, the wound is closed with stitches or clips. A partial knee replacement is a comparatively smaller operation, involving only one side of your joint being replaced.
At the OrthTeam Centre, we always strive to be at the forefront of providing state-of-the-art orthopaedic technology to our patients. OrthTeam hip and knee specialist, Mr Adam Hoad-Reddick, was one of the first consultants in the North of England to perform the pioneering Mako robotic knee replacement surgery.
The Mako system is used to assist during robotic total hip and knee replacements. The advanced technology allows the surgeon to deliver a personalised surgical plan for patients undergoing joint replacement surgery. This means that the artificial joint can be placed in the exactly the right position for each and every patient.
Initially, treatment options such as physiotherapy, weight management and steroid injections are suggested first to try to combat the issues of pain, swelling and inflammation, as a knee replacement is major surgery.
Similarly, to a hip replacement, a knee replacement is carried out when a patient’s mobility is adversely affected and when a feeling of pain even while resting is unbearable.
If your day-to-day life has become unmanageable as a result of your knee pain or discomfort, or if you have difficulty walking, or a deformity, you are likely to be recommended undergoing a knee replacement.
A knee replacement is necessary when the patient suffers from conditions such as gout, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, haemophilia and unusual bone growth.
During your knee replacement, your consultant will make the necessary incisions and begin to remove worn or damaged areas of your knee joint. Your new knee will then be fitted and your incisions will be closed.
The operation should take a maximum of two hours. You can expect to be an inpatient, staying in hospital for between two to five days.
Due to the substantial nature of knee replacement surgery, the recovery period is often slow and steady.
One-week post-operation, you can expect to be walking with an aid. Your physiotherapist will guide you with certain exercises to help to strengthen your knee at home. After four to six weeks, you may be able to drive, and after six weeks, you will most likely be able to walk without crutches. Between three months to one year after your knee replacement, you can expect your pain and swelling to have subsided, and after two years, your recovery should be complete.