When we reach certain age, our muscles and tissues gradually become weaker and our joints and cartilage can be among the first affected. One of the areas where the pain can be very uncomfortable and finally affect our lifestyle is the knee. This condition is called osteoarthritis. If this condition prevails, we may be a potential candidate for knee cap replacement procedure.
What does a knee cap replacement involves? The answer lies in the mechanism of our knee. If we are allowed to inspect the inside of our knee cap, we can see that it is comprised of 3 compartments. The three compartments are called medial, lateral and patellofemoral. The first compartment is located at the inside of our knee, the second one is its outside part and the third and last compartment is the front area of the knee, between the knee cap and the thighbone. All these knee compartments can be affected by osteoarthritis.
Why Partial Knee Cap Replacement is Better?
In the past, total or full knee cap replacement is almost always recommended. However, current market trends show an increase in partial knee cap replacements because medical technology is getting better and allows for this kind of procedure to be swifter and with lower risks. This is made possible only if 1 of the 3 knee compartments are affected. It is an option currently preferred by many patients due to many factors.
This treatment option is called robotic partial knee replacement, a surgical procedure that allows surgeon to treat only the weak and torn cartilage without causing damage to surrounding healthy ligaments and bones. This robotic arm allows for smaller incision and causes less bleeding, less pain, less scarring and better record and time of recovery. Due to advanced technology that gives more control over surgical precision, patient’s trauma is very much reduced.
Total Knee Cap Replacement
Full or total knee cap replacement is necessary when two or three compartments are damaged by arthritis. Conditions like instability of ligament or deformity due to long-time arthritis also requires similar procedure. Three compartmental arthritis is considered more serious than one compartmental damage.
In cases of total replacement, the surgeon resurfaces the knee with metal and plastic devices. Then, the knee ligaments are balanced to stabilize legs and future movements. This is the trickier part of the procedure. However, even after a full knee cap replacement, most of the patients can get fully recovered after one year, although they can feel the difference from before surgery. The knee can feel stiffer and more mechanical, and they may find it more difficult to kneel or squat.
Who are the Most Probable Candidate for Knee Cap Replacement?
This procedure is common for older patients between 55 to 75 years old. This is the age range when the joint and cartilage weaken due to old age. In severe cases, the legs can become bowed and knocked, causing those who suffer from it to have an awkward gait. However, advancement in medical technology now gives more options to the elderly. Early detection and treatment of knee problems is essential to reduce further damage to the joint and cartilage. Knee cap replacement either partial or total is becoming less traumatic and imposes lower risk to pati