Partial Knee Replacement


Our orthopedic surgeons provide Partial Knee Replacement (resurfacing) in place of Total Knee Replacement when possible. They will repair your knee rather than replace it!

Partial knee replacement (resurfacing) is a small-incision procedure that can greatly benefit people who have arthritis in only one compartment of the knee. Instead of replacing the entire knee, partial knee replacement (resurfacing) replaces only the side of the knee damaged by arthritis. The incision is small, there’s less pain, faster recovery and most patients are walking within 2-3 days.

Patient benefits are immense, including:

  • A partial knee implant
  • 23 hours – 1 day hospital stay
  • No suture removal
  • Back to activities in 4-6 weeks
  • No physical therapy
  • No blood transfusions
partial knee replacement

Minimally Invasive Knee Surgery

An Alternative to Total Knee Replacement

Patients who have arthritis on the inside or outside part (compartment) of the knee may not need a total knee replacement to relieve pain and restore function. An alternative option, Partial Knee Replacement, restores only the side of the knee that is damaged by arthritis. A resurfacing implant is much smaller than a total knee implant and does not disturb the knee’s healthy tissues.

Minimally Invasive Knee Surgery

History of Partial Knee Replacement (resurfacing)

The first Partial Knee Replacements (resurfacing) date back to the early 1970s and, like early total knee replacements, showed mixed success. But, over the last 25 years implant design, instrumentation, and surgical technique have improved, making resurfacing a successful treatment when osteoarthritis is advanced in one compartment of the knee.

Who Can Benefit From a Partial Knee Replacement (resurfacing)?

The treatment is designed for patients whose x-rays show arthritis in one knee compartment and who have not had satisfactory pain relief with non-surgical treatment.

When shots and pills fail and lifestyle is impaired, a Partial Knee Replacement (resurfacing) can be a step in the right direction. Knee x-rays, taken while standing, can indicate if a resurfacing procedure may be right for you. The x-ray must show loss of cartilage in one of the knee’s two weight-bearing compartments.

Overnight Hospital Stay

Benefits of less invasive procedures like Partial Knee Replacements (resurfacing) include less discomfort, a shorter hospital stay (23 hours – 1 day), no physical therapy, and more rapid healing. Most patients walk on their resurfaced knee the same day as surgery and are generally released from the hospital the next day. Within two weeks, most patients are driving a car and resuming daily activities.

Loss in Cartilage
​Osteoarthritis of the Knee

osteoarthritis of the knee

Why have a Partial Knee Replacement (resurfacing)?

Smaller Incisions/Hidden Sutures. First, the entire knee is examined using a video camera and an arthroscope. If the kneecap and one weight-bearing surface appears healthy, then a Partial Knee Replacement (resurfacing) is indicated.

A 3″-4″ incision is made, rather than the 6″-8″ incision required for total knee replacement. For a more pleasing appearance after surgery, small, self-dissolving sutures, like those used by cosmetic surgeons, are hidden underneath the skin. No external sutures or skin clips are used.

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These are general guidelines and represent average experiences for people who are patients of The Florida Knee and Orthopedic Centers. Keep in mind that healing and recovery times will vary with each person.

After joint replacement singles tennis, jogging and heavy weight lifting are not generally recommended activities.

Activity After Surgery
Hours in Hospital Twenty-Four
Physical Therapy None
Weeks with Walker/Cane Two Weeks
Weeks Until Driving One to Three
Weeks Until Dancing Four to Six
Golfing/Bowling/Biking/etc. Six Weeks
Double Tennis Six Weeks
Jogging Please Don’t

View our video on Knee Resurfacing

View a video testimonial from one of our happy patients

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