Partial Knee Replacement
Partial Knee Replacement is a surgical option for patients who have arthritis
of one part of the knee. In general, patients can have a quicker recovery
with a partial knee replacement than with a total knee replacement.
Pain is the main indication for partial knee replacement. With this procedure,
we expect to be able to relieve most, if not all, of your pain. This is
achievable more than 95% of the time in nationwide groups of patients
and in our own patients. The other primary indication for partial knee
replacement is poor function. A successful replacement will provide a
stable limb that will provide good to excellent function in more than
95% of patients. Your surgical team will discuss with you the options
of surgery and whether or not you are an ideal candidate for this surgery.
Possible Complications from Partial Knee Replacement
A partial knee replacement is a major surgery. Complications are rare,
but we feel you should be aware of these in order to make an informed decision.
The following is a list of potential complications and risks associated
with major surgeries:
- Complications from anesthesia
- Infection (rate less than 1%)
- Loosening of implants
- Injury to blood vessels
- Injury to nerves
- Fracture of your bone during implantation
- Leg length inequality
- Blood clots
- Reactions to materials used
- Lack of pain relief
- Tendon rupture
- Skin necrosis
- Wear and implant failure
Your physician at Newport Orthopedic Institute is aware of these possible
complications and takes many precautions to reduce these risks. If you
have any other questions or concerns about these, or other complications
of surgery, please discuss them with your physician.
Preparation for Partial Knee Replacement Surgery
After it is determined that you are a candidate for surgery, scheduling
surgery can be done during an office visit or over the phone with your
physician’s surgery scheduler. In order to better prepare your home
prior to partial knee replacement, we recommend that you participate in the
Pre-Op Hip and Knee Replacement Class offered through Hoag Orthopedic Institute. Prior to your surgery date,
our surgery scheduler will contact you and will review an important itemized
checklist of instructions which includes:
- Your surgery date and estimated time
- Required arrival time to the hospital
- The date and time of your pre-op appointment visit
- Required pre-operative internal medical clearances
Some patients need special clearances (ie. cardiology) prior to surgery.
This decision is based on your medical history.
Prior to Partial Knee Replacement Surgery
Medications to Avoid Before Surgery
Do not take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID’s) medications
for 7 days before surgery. The use of these medications can interfere
with blood clotting and prolong bleeding times.
- Examples include: Motrin, Nuprin, Advil (Ibuprofen), Indomethacin, Orudis,Aleve
(Naproxen), Voltaren, etc.
- Stop taking Celebrex or Mobic 3 to 4 days before surgery.
In general, stop taking aspirin or aspirin products 5 to 7 days before surgery.
- If you are on aspirin for medical or cardiac reasons, please discuss with
- Tylenol or acetaminophen products can be taken up to the night before your surgery.
- If you are on a steroid, such as Prednisone, you should continue to take
this until the day of your surgery.
Recovery from Partial Knee Replacement Surgery
The duration of recovery and rehabilitation vary widely from patient to
patient depending on factors such as: the type of procedure performed,
age, weight and physical/medical conditions.
Depending on several factors, some patients are walking with assistance
as soon as several hours after surgery. You may be given a front wheel
walker or crutches to use. If your surgery is taking place at
Hoag Orthopedic Institute, your hospital stay will usually be from one to two days. It is very important
to take it easy and rest at home for the first 3 to 5 days post surgery.
Your activity level should consist of getting up to go to the bathroom and
walking in the house. Please keep your knee and leg elevated as much as
possible to reduce swelling and pain. Icing may be helpful to decrease swelling.
Pain Management after Partial Knee Replacement Surgery
You may experience pain as part of your condition or treatment while in
recovery. However you have a right to safe, effective pain relief. Unrelieved
pain can have adverse physical and psychological effects, as well as delay
your recovery process. Any time you experience pain, inform your physician
or registered nurse (RN) even if they don’t ask you.
The pain associated with having completed your partial knee replacement
surgery should be greatly reduced by post-operative day 2. We recommend
taking the pain medication on a regular basis for the first week or so.
Most patients can also use anti-inflammatory agents such as Advil or Aleve
to help control pain and swelling. Please feel free to discuss pain issues
with any member of the joint team.
There is also some pain further out after knee replacement surgery. Some
therapy will cause mild to moderate pain and swelling for some periods
of time. If the pain persists, question the therapy or stop it.
Narcotics are discouraged before knee replacement surgery, as they make
it very difficult to manage post-operative pain after surgery. Pain medication
such as narcotics and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories are crucial to
your recovery after partial knee replacement surgery. We do encourage
their usage in the immediate post-operative period. Usually, patients
have discontinued narcotic usage by 3 months after surgery. If pain is
still an issue, a
pain management specialist may be recommended. Please review the following information