Total knee replacement
Destruction of the knee joint can be caused by degenerative conditions or by traumatic injury. If your knee has been damaged to the point where you can’t walk, climb stairs, or even sit, then you may need a total knee replacement.
This procedure is has become quite common; each year, roughly several hundred thousand knee replacements are performed. During this surgery, the orthopedic surgeon will “resurface” the joint with metal and plastic implants. This is much like a dentist placing a crown on a tooth. The implants effectively cover and protect the raw exposed bone from further friction and damage leading to a dramatic decrease in pain.
Total knee replacement isn’t recommended for everyone, but it can be a viable and successful option to eliminate chronic, severe pain that won’t go away with nonsurgical intervention. Talk to an orthopedic surgeon at OSI to learn more about total knee replacements and how they can help you regain the quality of life and mobility you desire.
Partial knee replacement
An alternative to a total knee replacement, a partial knee replacement (also known as a unicompartmental knee replacement) resurfaces just a portion of the knee with metal and plastic implants. Partial knee replacement is typically for those whose knee damage is limited to a specific area of the knee as opposed to the entire knee. This procedure is less invasive and can result in a quicker recovery time than a total knee replacement.
MAKOplasty robotic knee replacement
A MAKOplasty knee replacement is a robot-assisted unicompartmental (or partial) knee replacement surgery. A special robotic arm is guided by a computer to assist the orthopedic surgeon in making sure the components used in the replacement are properly aligned. This can create more consistent results and potentially increase the longevity of the procedure. Talk to your orthopedic surgeon to see if MAKOplasty robotic knee replacement is an option for you.
Arthroscopic knee surgery is a procedure that uses small incisions around your knee through which a small camera – an arthroscope – is placed to visualize the inside of your knee. This allows your surgeon to check out the damaged area and make repairs in a minimally-invasive way, whether it’s fixing a tear in a meniscus, addressing cartilage/ligament damage, or debriding scar tissue.
Since it is minimally invasive, arthroscopic knee surgery typically results in a shorter recovery time, meaning you’ll be back on your feet faster than with other techniques. Consult with an orthopedic surgeon at OSI to determine if a knee arthroscopy is recommended for your course of treatment.
Ligament reconstruction (ACL, MCL, PCL, LCL)
Your knee has four major ligaments that help hold the joint together: the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL); posterior cruciate ligament (PCL); medial collateral ligament (MCL); and lateral collateral ligament (LCL).
These ligaments can become partially or completely torn through various accidents but are often associated with sporting injuries, falls, or car wrecks. This usually happens as a result of a sudden change of direction, deceleration while running, or blunt force to the knee.
There are three degrees of severity: grade I, grade II, and grade III. It is possible to avoid surgery with any grade, but for athletes and those who want more stability in the future, surgery may be recommended.
In an ACL, MCL, LCL, or PCL surgery, the orthopedic surgeon will either repair the torn ligament directly or will replace it completely with a tendon grafted from another part of the body or taken from a donor (cadaver). For ACLs in particular, traditional treatment consists of reconstructing the ligament with a graft but there is some newer literature suggesting certain tears may actually heal with direct repair.
Talk to an orthopedic surgeon at OSI to get a full suite of options for treating damage to the ligaments in your knee.
Meniscal surgery and transplant
The meniscus is a thin piece of cartilage between the surfaces of the knee joint that serves as a shock absorber for your knee. When healthy, they help to cushion the joint. When torn or damaged, though, they can result in pain or an inability to move and function as normal.
Meniscal surgery is typically performed with arthroscopic visualization and involves either attempting to repair the torn meniscus or trimming the torn portion away. This decision is based on a variety of factors such as age/overall condition of the knee, location of the tear within the meniscus, and tear orientation.
In certain circumstances, such as a young patient who has had their meniscus previously removed, it may be beneficial to replace the meniscus entirely. In a meniscal transplant, your orthopedic surgeon will replace your damaged meniscus with one from a cadaver donor. This can help restore function in your knee and eliminate the pain resulting from your bones rubbing against each other.
Talk to an orthopedic surgeon at OSI for more information on which of these options is best for you if you are diagnosed with a meniscal tear.
The knee is made up of the junction of the femur, tibia, and patella. Fractures can occur through any of these bones and are often associated with falls or higher energy accidents such as car wrecks. These fractures can potentially be treated with or without surgery but usually depends on factors such as the fracture pattern, location, overall health of the patient, and other injuries. When surgery is indicated it can help restore the joint surfaces back to a more natural position, allow for earlier range of motion, and sometimes a quicker return to function.
Our orthopedic surgeons have experience in dealing with fractures about the knee and understand the delicate nature of the knee and how best to handle this vital part of the body. Talk to one of our surgeons to learn more about treating a knee your fracture and how to best recover from it.
Osteotomy of the knee
An osteotomy is a procedure that cuts part of the bone in the affected area to help reduce pain and increase mobility through transferring weight to a healthy part of the knee and correcting bad alignment. Advantages of an osteotomy are that it can delay a knee replacement and get you back to your normal routine – even high-impact sports – immediately.
An osteotomy may not be recommended for everyone. If you qualify, your orthopedic surgeon will walk you through the pros and cons of the procedure and give you a professional recommendation as to what you should do and what you can expect.