Knee replacement surgery, also known as knee arthroplasty, is recommended for severely damaged joints due to conditions such as osteoarthritis.
Whether or not you need a knee replacement – and which type you need, full or partial – goes beyond the severity of the symptoms you’re experiencing. Your orthopedic doctor can determine the location and extent of the damage in your knee joint, and whether you are a good candidate for a knee replacement.
Both procedures involve the same premise: replacing worn out parts of the knee joint with prosthetics (artificial parts). The procedures involve removing damaged bone and tissue around your thighbone, shin, and kneecap. After this, your doctor would replace the old joint or part of the old joint with an artificial joint. The artificial joint will likely be made of plastic or metal.
The difference between a full and partial replacement involves how much of the joint is being replaced.
So which procedure is right for you? If damage in your joint is significant enough, your orthopedist will recommend a full knee replacement; if the damage is confined to one or two compartments of the knee, then a partial replacement may be suggested. A partial procedure is recommended as it involves less trauma to the area, meaning less pain, scarring, and a faster recovery period.
It is important to note, though, that a knee replacement is typically only recommended after all other options have been exhausted. If your joints have continued to deteriorate over time, if you aren’t responding positively to medication or pain management injections or physical therapy, then your last option would be a partial knee replacement if not a full knee replacement.
Experts agree that the best course of treatment for a knee that shows signs of deformity, significant damage, and/or severe instability would be to replace the entire knee altogether. However, it’s important to note that the full procedure may involve more pain and a longer recovery time.
Contact North Country Orthopaedic Group to learn about your knee replacement options – both full knee replacement and partial. Call us today at (315) 782-1650 or use our online appointment request form to schedule your visit.