If your osteoarthritis is affecting your quality of life, your surgeon may recommend surgery.
Total knee replacement surgery In total knee replacement surgery, the surgeon reshapes the damaged bones to fit the shape of the metal prosthesis.
The thigh bone (femur) and the shin bone (tibia) are covered with two metal shells separated by a plastic liner.
A plastic “button” may also be placed under the knee cap (patella) if there is arthritis under the surface of the bone.
Most people who have their knees replaced enjoy improved mobility and decreased pain for up to 15 to 20 years.
Uni-knee replacement surgery A uni-knee (unicondylar-knee) replacement surgery is done when the cartilage is damaged on only one side of the knee. The damaged part of the joint is removed and replaced with two metal shells separated by a plastic liner.
Often people who have uni-knee replacement surgery have a shorter recovery time than they would have had with a total knee replacement.
Knee precautions after knee replacement surgeryYou will have to avoid certain activities for the first three months.
You will not be allowed to squat, kneel, or twist your knee. You will need to ensure that your knee is straight when you are laying in bed or resting with your leg supported.
These activity restrictions will help your joint to heal and reduce stiffness in the new joint.
Learn more about knee precautions and sexual activity
With arthroscopic surgery, broken bits of cartilage are removed from the joint, allowing the joint to move smoothly with less pain. Arthroscopy can also be used by surgeons to look inside the joint to determine the extent of the damage.
While this procedure is less invasive than a full joint replacement, people who have arthroscopic surgery will still have to undergo physiotherapy.
Which procedure is right for me?
For more information on knee surgery, or to find out if this is the best surgery for you, talk to your surgeon.