A unicompartmental knee replacement is the surgery performed when only one side of the knee has been damaged by osteoarthritis. This surgery is also called a partial knee replacement and is less complicated than total knee replacement surgery. The main aim of this knee replacement surgery is to decrease pain and restore function.
During unicompartmental knee replacement surgery, damaged tissue and bone in the knee joint is replaced with an artificial implant, called a prosthesis. Unicompartmental surgery is usually performed using techniques called minimally invasive surgery like arthroscopic surgery or reduced invasive surgery. It involves minor incisions, lesser bleeding and less bone than total knee replacement. This further reduces the recovery time.
Unicompartmental knee replacement surgery is not applicable to everyone because the patient needs to have strong, healthy ligaments within the knee. In some cases this wont be known until the time of surgical operation.
Recovery is fast. Patient may need a walker or crutches for some weeks until it become convenient enough to walk without assistance.
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