Partial knee replacement

What is it? 

Partial knee replacement is a surgical procedure used to treat some types of arthritis of the knee as only the inside part of the joint is affected. In these circumstances, it is possible to replace the damaged section without having a total knee replacement.

Usually in the early stages of arthritis, a patient can be treated with non-surgical treatments such as painkillers and physiotherapy as well as a knee arthroscopy. As the knee progressively wears the only long-term treatment available is to replace the damaged part of the joint.

Diagnosis and treatment options

Your consultant may recommend one of our advanced diagnostic technologies to look at your knee and help them understand the cause of your pain or mobility problems.

The surgery involves removing a very small thickness of damaged bone from the inside part of the knee. Much less bone is removed than in a total knee replacement and only from one side of the knee. The partial knee replacement fits inside this prepared space.

The operation takes about an hour and involves an 8cm incision on the medial (inner) side of the kneecap. This small incision does not involve cutting any muscle or tendons (as with a total knee replacement), therefore enabling quicker recovery from surgery.

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