Partial knee replacement

A unicompartmental knee replacement

1 in 5 people in the Netherlands will experience knee osteoarthritis. Fortunately, there are various non-surgical and surgical treatments available to address this condition. Total knee replacement is the most common surgical treatment for knee osteoarthritis. However, in 30-40% of patients, only the inner side of the knee is affected, and in 5% of patients, only the outer side is affected. The knee ligaments and the rest of the knee are still in excellent condition. In such cases, a unicompartmental knee replacement can be a suitable option for this patient group.
halve knie prothese

What happens during the surgery?

The surgery can be performed under general anesthesia or with a spinal anesthetic. The choice is up to you.

During the surgery, a small incision is made on the inner or outer side of the knee. The worn-out portion of the tibia and femur is removed and replaced with a prosthesis. The cruciate ligaments and the unaffected parts of the knee are preserved. The original shape of the leg is also restored. The prosthesis ensures that the normal shape, also known as congruence, is restored.

The surgery typically takes 45 to 60 minutes. You will stay overnight at Medische Kliniek Velsen and can go home the morning after the operation.

What are the advantages of a partial knee replacement?

Numerous studies have shown that a unicompartmental knee replacement offers the following significant advantages for patients compared to a total knee replacement:

  • Less blood loss
  • Fewer complications related to the surgery
  • Shorter hospital stay
  • Better function of the operated knee
  • The knee feels more natural, resembling your own knee. You are less aware of the presence of the prosthesis.

What are the benefits of a unicompartmental knee replacement for you?

A unicompartmental knee replacement eliminates the pain caused by arthritis and restores the function of the knee.

What does the rehabilitation process look like?

The total rehabilitation of a unicompartmental knee replacement takes 12 months. However, you can typically resume your daily activities within six to eight weeks after the surgery. It’s important to exercise caution, as pain and swelling may still affect your recovery for up to three months post-surgery.

During the 12-month period following your operation, your knee will continue to heal. Scar tissue will gradually improve, and the muscles around the knee will regain full function. Our team will provide guidance on the necessary physical therapy to strengthen the knee and restore its mobility. The day after the surgery, you will receive a specific protocol for your at-home physical therapy, ensuring a smooth rehabilitation process. In the weeks following the surgery, you will need to perform daily exercises and have 2 to 3 training sessions per week with your physical therapist. It is also advisable to arrange for a stationary bike at home.