Partial Knee Replacement Surgery

What is it, and how is it performed?

Living with knee pain can make life difficult. If you suffer from joint disease as a result of degenerative or post-traumatic arthritis, then a partial knee replacement may be able to provide you with the pain relief you are looking for.

If you are curious about how a partial knee replacement can help, schedule an appointment at OrthoNeuro. 

Our board-certified orthopedic knee specialists can evaluate your unique lifestyle and goals to determine which type of treatment is best for you. Contact one of our many offices throughout Greater Columbus, Ohio today!

What Is Partial Knee Replacement Surgery?

Partial knee replacement surgery is a surgical procedure used to correct knee arthritis when only part of the knee joint is affected.

There are three knee compartments: the medial compartment, the lateral compartment, and the patella or knee cap. The medial compartment is found on the inside of the knee, closest to the opposite knee. 

The lateral compartment is on the outside of the knee joint. The medial compartment is the most likely compartment of the knee to be affected by arthritis.

The damaged part of the knee cartilage is replaced with a prosthesis. When one compartment of the knee is replaced, it is called unicompartmental knee replacement. 

When the knee cap is replaced along with either the medial or lateral compartment, it is referred to as bicompartmental knee replacement.

In the past, partial knee replacements were only performed on older patients. In recent times, this type of knee surgery has been performed in younger patients as recovery time is quicker and typically less painful.

It is estimated that around 5-6 % of people who suffer from arthritis could benefit from a partial knee replacement.

Who Is a Candidate for Partial Knee Replacement?

If you suffer from medial or lateral knee osteoarthritis, then a partial knee replacement may be a good option for you. 

You should also keep the following factors in mind when considering a partial knee replacement:

  • Your knee pain continues despite taking anti-inflammatory drugs and maintaining a healthy weight.
  • The area of pain in your knee, your range of motion, and the knee’s stability.
  • What an X-ray reveals.
  • You must have an intact anterior cruciate ligament, a sufficient range of knee motion, damage to only one compartment, and a stable knee. The angulation of the deformity is also considered.
  • A partial knee replacement can be considered regardless of your age.

What Are the Advantages of a Partial Knee Replacement Over a Total Knee Replacement?

There are several advantages of partial knee replacements over total knee replacements. 

Partial knee replacement patients may experience the following advantages:

  • Better range of motion in the knee joint after surgery
  • Improved knee function
  • Less postoperative pain
  • Less chance of blood clots
  • Less chance of infection
  • Easier on your cardiovascular system
  • Less blood loss
  • Faster recovery period
  • Greater satisfaction

What Are the Risks of a Partial Knee Replacement?

As with any joint replacement surgery, there are some risks involved.

The following are some of the risks associated with partial knee replacement surgery:

  • Infection at the surgical site
  • Knee joint stiffness
  • Slight chance of developing blood clots
  • Small chance of damaging blood vessels or nerves
  • Prolonged pain
  • Prosthesis fixation failure

How Long Does It Take To Recover From a Partial Knee Replacement?

Most patients fully recover from a partial knee replacement within 6 to 8 weeks. Beginning from the day of surgery, you should be able to move your knee.

A physical therapist will work with you to mobilize the knee while you are in the hospital and for 2 to 4 weeks after you are discharged. 

Hospital discharge is usually no later than one or two days after surgery. You may need to take some medication while at the hospital and some time after to prevent blood clots.

After you have fully recovered, you may be required to limit certain impact sports, such as jogging or running. However, sports such as tennis or skiing may be allowed.

Make an Appointment with an OrthoNeuro Knee Specialist Today!

If you are wondering whether or not a partial knee replacement is the right choice for you, schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified specialists at OrthoNeuro today!

We have multiple locations throughout Columbus, OH for your convenience. Our doctors look forward to helping you on the road to recovery

Knee Specialists


“Meniscus repair six months ago. Surgery went smoothly. Dr. set realistic expectations that have been met.
Great team to work with“

Westerville Orthopedic Urgent Care Center is closed today Tuesday 8/29