Partial knee replacement

Bone and ligament sparing partial knee replacement

Partial knee replacement has been around as a surgical option since the 1970s. Today, partial knee replacement is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that may provide several key benefits to patients whose arthritis is confined to a single compartment of their knee, have a moderately active lifestyle and are within normal weight ranges.

First, let's discuss what is meant by the term minimally invasive surgery or MIS. To be clear, MIS is still a surgical procedure and therefore carries the same risks associated with other surgeries. However, because it uses specially designed surgical instruments, partial knee replacement using the MIS technique is able to prepare the bones of your knee and then properly place your new implant using a smaller incision than traditional knee replacement. Also, because the implant only replaces one compartment of your knee, there is less bone removed and typically less disturbance to the tissue surrounding the knee than in traditional knee replacement surgery.

According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, partial knee replacement patients usually spend less time in the hospital, have less blood loss, and return to normal activities sooner than do total knee replacement patients.1 Partial knee replacement patients may also experience better early flexion, less pain after surgery and more natural feeling outcome.2

Potential benefits of partial knee replacement compared with total knee replacement

  1. No disruption of the knee cap3
  2. Less blood loss
  3. Possibility for less post-operative pain
  4. Faster rehab/recovery time
  5. Better early range of motion

Important: individual results may vary.

Important safety notes

Individual results of joint replacement vary. Implants are intended to relieve knee pain and improve function, but may not produce the same feel or function as your original knee. There are potential risks with knee replacement surgery such as loosening, wear and infection that may result in the need for additional surgery. Patients should not perform high impact activities such as running and jumping unless their surgeon tells them that the bone has healed and these activities are acceptable. Early device failure, breakage or loosening may occur if a surgeon's limitations on activity level are not followed.

Talk to your doctor to determine what treatment may be best for you.

  2. Laurencin CT, Zelicof SB, Scott RD, Ewald FC. Unicompartmental versus total knee arthroplasty in the same patient. A comparative study. Clin Orthop Relat Res. 1991; (273):151–156
  3. Based on the JOURNEY UNI surgical technique

The information listed on this site is for informational and educational purposes and is not meant as medical advice. Every patient's case is unique and each patient should follow his or her doctor's specific instructions. Please discuss nutrition, medication and treatment options with your doctor to make sure you are getting the proper care for your particular situation.