Minimally Invasive Sub-Vastus Approach to Knee replacement

Knee replacement is surgery for people with severe knee damage. Knee replacement can relieve pain and allow you to be more active. Your doctor may recommend it if you have knee pain and medicine and other treatments are not helping you anymore.

When you have a total knee replacement, the surgeon removes damaged cartilage and bone from the surface of your knee joint and replaces them with a man-made surface of metal and plastic. In a partial knee replacement, the surgeon only replaces one part of your knee joint. The surgery can cause scarring, blood clots, and, rarely, infections. After a knee replacement, you will no longer be able to do certain activities, such as jogging and high-impact sports.

Sometimes known as Minimally Invasive Total Knee Arthroplasty, the subvastus approach allows the surgeon to remove damaged bone and tissue and replace it with an implant. However, the surgeon does not cut through the quadriceps muscle and tendon. The knee surgery is completed by going under and around the quadriceps muscle.

Among the potential benefits of this technique are:

  • More rapid return of knee function and less pain medication use in the first week post-surgery
  • Decreased postoperative pain compared to conventional knee replacement
  • Smaller incision sites

Orthopedic surgeons will look at each patient individually to choose the best approach for the patient. Some pre-existing conditions may make the traditional knee replacement a better choice. For example, patients with severe deformity or stiffness in the joint may require the traditional approach for more exposure of the inflamed tissues.

– Source: U.S. National Library of Medicine, MedlinePlus

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