Partial knee replacement; Knee replacement - partial; Unicondylar knee replacement; Arthroplasty - unicompartmental knee; UKA; Minimally invasive partial knee replacement
Unicompartmental knee arthroplasty (UKA) is surgery to replace either the inside (medial) or outside (lateral) compartments of the knee.
Because only one part of the damaged knee is replaced, it is often called a partial knee replacement.
See also: Total knee replacement
Partial knee replacement surgery involves removing damaged cartilage and bone in the knee joint. Man-made (artificial) pieces called prostheses are then placed in the knee.
You will not feel any pain during surgery because you will receive anesthesia, medicine that blocks pain. You will have one of these two types of anesthesia:
After you receive anesthesia, your surgeon will make a surgical cut over your knee to open it up. This cut is often 3 to 5 inches long. Then your surgeon will:
The most common reason to have a knee joint replaced is to relieve severe arthritis pain. Your doctor may recommend knee joint replacement if:
Knee joint replacement is usually done in people age 60 and older. Younger people who have a knee joint replaced may put extra stress on the new knee joint and cause it to wear out.
Most people with knee arthritis have a surgery called a total knee arthroplasty (TKA). Partial knee arthroplasty may be a good choice for people who have arthritis on only one side of the knee, and who:
Always tell your doctor or nurse what drugs you are taking; even drugs, supplements, or herbs you bought without a prescription.
During the 2 weeks before your surgery:
On the day of your surgery:
Most patients go home the day after surgery. You can put your full weight on your knee right away. There is usually less rehabilitation or physical therapy needed compared to total knee replacement.
After surgery, you will be encouraged to do as much as you can for yourself. This includes going to the bathroom or taking walks in the hallways, always with someone helping you.
Most people do not need a short stay in a rehabilitation center after they leave the hospital and before they go home.
Most patients have a fast recovery and have much less pain than they did before surgery.
Many patients are able to walk without a cane or walker by 1 - 2 weeks after surgery. You will need physical therapy for 4 to 6 months.
Most forms of exercise are acceptable after surgery, including walking, swimming, and biking. However, you should avoid high-impact activities such as jogging.
Crockarell JR, Guyton JL. Arthroplasty of the knee. In: Canale ST, Beatty JH, ed. Campbell's Operative Orthopaedics. 11th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier;2007:chap 6.
Berger RA, Meneghini RM, Jacobs JJ, et al. Results of unicompartmental knee arthroplasty at a minimum of ten years of follow-up. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2005;87(5):999-1006.
Patil S, Colwell CW Jr, Ezzet KA, et al. Can normal knee kinematics be restored with unicompartmental knee replacement? J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2005;87(2):332-338.
Richmond J, Hunter D, Irrgang J, et al. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee (nonarthroplasty). J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2009;17:591-600.
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