Thursday, 17 of January of 2019

Tag » knee replacement surgery

Total Knee Replacement vs. Partial Knee Replacement or Resurfacing – What’s the Difference?

If pain and stiffness in your knees is starting to make getting around increasingly difficult, the first step is to consult with an orthopedic surgeon. After tests confirm a diagnosis of osteoarthritis, the next step is to discuss your options with the doctor.

You might be surprised to learn that thanks to advances in technology, there are new options that are available as an alternative to total knee replacement. Younger patients and those with less advanced disease may be good candidates for an innovative technique called partial knee replacement or partial knee resurfacing.

According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, “most patients report that a partial knee replacement feels more natural and that the knee may bend better” than with a total knee replacement.

Whether you qualify as a candidate for a partial knee will depend primarily on the extent of damage from osteoarthritis.

Anatomy of the Knee

The knee has three compartments – an inside or medial compartment; an outside or lateral compartment; and a front or patellar (the kneecap) compartment. In some patients, damage from osteoarthritis may affect only one or two compartments of the knee, rather than all three. And for these patients, a partial knee replacement may be a good choice.

A partial knee is a minimally invasive procedure that replaces only one or two compartments of the knee, leaving the cartilage, ligaments and bone in other areas of the knee that are healthy intact. Most of the time, it is the medial and patellar, rather than the lateral compartments that are replaced or resurfaced.

During the procedure, the surgeon removes the damaged cartilage, as well as some bone from the tibia and femur, (the upper and lower leg bones). Then the ends of the bones are reshaped to accept the new implant. 

In contrast, a total knee replacement removes damaged tissue from all three compartments of the knee — replacing the entire joint with artificial implants.

Advantages & Disadvantages

There are many advantages to partial knee replacement or resurfacing, including:

  • Smaller incisions
  • Less trauma to the body
  • Reduced blood loss
  • Shorter hospitalization
  • Faster recovery time
  • Less need for physical therapy
  • Gentle exercises at home and walking restore mobility

What are the disadvantages? The biggest concern is the potential for cartilage in the remaining compartments to deteriorate at some point in the future, which would then require additional surgery.

To find out whether you might be a candidate for partial knee replacement, call Dr. Kagan at 239-936-6778 or go to For a more detail explanation on how the procedure is performed, go to

When Is Knee Replacement Surgery The Right Decision?

If you have chronic knee pain caused by osteoarthritis, eventually, the progressive, degenerative nature of the disease may mean that surgery is the best solution to relieve pain and improve your quality of life. Surgery reshapes the damaged portion of bone caused by the wearing away of cartilage and replaces the joint with an artificial implant.

Even though knee replacement is a very common and successful surgery, making the decision to undergo this procedure is a very big step. How do you know when the time is right to make this important decision?

Many people think of knee replacement surgery as the last resort –that their knee pain must be bad enough to severely compromise their lifestyle before they agree to an operation. But today, most medical experts agree that there is no reason to live with chronic pain. When conservative treatment fails to help, it’s time to consider more permanent measures.

According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery, there are several important signs that you may be a good candidate for knee replacement surgery:

You have tried a variety of conservative, nonsurgical treatments, such as exercise, anti-inflammation and pain-relief medication, hot and cold therapy, and injections. However, these methods have failed to control the pain and improve your condition.

Knee pain wakes you up at night or prevents you from falling asleep.

You find that knee pain makes it nearly impossible to participate in recreational activities that you enjoy – golf, tennis, dancing, walking, shopping.

Knee pain makes performing every day activities, from getting out of bed or a chair to climbing the stairs or standing for very long, even to cook meals, painful and challenging.

Learning more about knee replacement surgery can help you make a better decision about whether it’s for you. Find out how it’s performed and what to expect at

Hear my interview on WINK-AM’s Power Players

With an aging baby boom population and the availability of minimally invasive treatment options, there has been a significant increase over the years in the number of knee replacement surgeries. I was recently featured on WINK-AM’s Power Players radio show. I spoke with host Jim McLaughlin about treatment options and what patients can expect if they need surgery. I shared some great information for those suffering with knee and joint pain. Here’s a link so you can listen and learn more:

Joint Pain Meets its Match



One of the best parts of my job is helping people get back to their normal routine and the activities they enjoy.

One of my patients, 63-year-old Richard O’Donnell of Cape Coral had been coping with knee pain for nearly ten years.

“Hockey has been my passion for nearly 40 years until my knee pain became unbearable,” said 63-year-old O’Donnell. “I was referred to Dr. Kagan by several people and after a thorough evaluation, he recommended knee replacement surgery. Just a few months after surgery, I was back to the ice. My pain is gone and I’m back in the rink.”

To learn more about your options for joint pain, call our office at 239-936-6778, ext. 2227.

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