Patellofemoral partial knee replacement
During this “partial” knee replacement, a surgeon removes worn down bone and cartilage surfaces and replaces them with metal and polyethylene (plastic) implants. The surgeon replaces the surface of the trochlear groove with a thin metallic shield and a dome-like plastic implant is used on the patella.
Why choose Patellofemoral partial knee replacement?
Osteoarthritis causes patients significant and progressive pain as the cartilage in joints breaks down and is replaced with lesions and possibly bone spurs. Physicians offer a variety of treatments to control the pain and slow the progression of the disease, but eventually the joint no longer functions without severe pain. Not all patients’ joints degenerate far enough in their lifetime as everyone’s joints degenerate at their own unique pace. For patients whom joints have failed total joint replacement can offer relief. However, some patients have isolated degeneration leaving the rest of the joint untouched. Patellofemoral partial knee replacement solves the issue of arthritis specific to where the patella rubs against the trochlear groove. In layman’s terms this partial joint replacement isolates and removes the arthritic damage to the kneecap.
Who is a candidate for Patellofemoral partial knee replacement?
Patients with osteoarthritis of the knee that has removed their ability to live their life functionally could be candidates for joint replacement if other more conservative modalities have failed. In addition to having end stage osteoarthritis of the knee the damage needs to be isolated to the patella and trochlear groove. If there is damage to the rest of the knee, then additional partial replacements may be considered as well as a total joint replacement. In addition to isolated damage the arthritis should not be of an autoimmune nature, gout related, as well as having healthy ligaments and a healthy weight. Patellar tracking issues as well as knee stiffness may also decrease your chances of being a good candidate for this intervention.
Benefits of a Patellofemoral partial knee replacement
A partial knee replacement for proper candidates has its advantages. First of all, sparing healthy tissue decreases the invasiveness of an intervention and is associated with a easier and quicker recovery. This procedure has a smaller incision than a total knee replacement and has a more natural range of motion after recovery. Being a less invasive procedure also has the benefit of less blood loss and lower rates of complications.