Joint pain and movement limitations are common as the protective cartilage that lines the knee joint surface wears away. General wear and tear, injury, and arthritis can contribute to joint pain, swelling, and stiffness. When nonsurgical solutions fail to provide effective relief, surgery may be recommended.
The knee is one of the most common joints to require replacement as you age. Through the years, the stress of your body weight as you walk, run, jump, bend, squat, exercise, or play sports takes its toll by wearing down the cartilage that lines the knee joint. When the bones start to rub together, you will feel pain because the knee joint no longer glides smoothly.
At Orthopaedic Associates in Central Maryland, our joint replacement surgeons perform a variety of surgical approaches for knee replacement, including traditional total, minimally invasive total, and partial. Your doctor will ask you about your lifestyle and level of pain to determine your treatment options and let you know if knee replacement is right for you.
If your knee pain is limiting your activity, call (410) 644-1880 for a consultation with one of our knee replacement surgeons in Columbia, Catonsville, or Eldersburg, Maryland, or you can request an appointment online.
KNEE REPLACEMENT PROCEDURES
Like traditional total knee replacement surgery, this procedure involves removing the damaged portion of the knee and replacing it with artificial implants. However, minimally invasive knee replacement uses a smaller incision (3 to 6 inches) than traditional surgery. Instead of cutting through thigh muscles and tendons, your surgeon will lift or push them out of the way.
While working through a smaller incision is more difficult for the surgeon, advantages to the patient include less damage to muscles and tendons, less pain, a shorter hospital stay, quicker recovery, and smaller scar.
If arthritis affects only part of your knee, your doctor may recommend a partial knee replacement after other treatments (injections, medication, and physical therapy) are no longer effective.
During the surgery, your doctor will remove only the bone and tissue that needs to be taken out and replace it with metal and plastic parts. The rest of the healthy tissue and bone is left alone. Because a partial knee replacement is performed through a smaller incision and with less damage to other parts of the knee, you will recover faster than patients who have a total knee replacement.
Knee replacement, or knee arthroplasty, is the most common type of joint replacement surgery. It is highly successful for relieving pain and restoring joint function.
In a traditional total knee replacement, your surgeon will make an 8- to 12-inch incision on the side of your patella (kneecap) and cut through thigh muscles, tendons, and other soft tissue to access your knee joint. He or she will remove the damaged bone, cartilage, and connective tissue and replace the knee joint with an artificial one.