Knee Pain Treatment
Orthopedic surgeons specializing in knee surgery offer minimally invasive surgical treatment for these common conditions:
- Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL)
Our knee pain specialists will evaluate the injury and may order imaging to see if you qualify for orthopedic knee surgery.
“I offer an in-office arthroscopy using local anesthetic and a small camera to look inside of knee and shoulder joints for the pathology causing the cartilage or ligament tear. This is a great option for patients who don’t want to wait for an MRI or are claustrophobic of an MRI machine.”
– Dr. Jonathan Hersch, orthopaedic surgeon, sports medicine, shoulder, knee and hip arthroscopy.
Orthopedic knee surgeons offer several types of minimally invasive knee surgery, including these common procedures:
ACL reconstruction — Reconstructs a ligament tear in knee
Meniscectomy — Removes all or part of a damaged meniscus
Knee arthroplasty — Replaces damaged parts of knee with an implant
“For knee problems the most common by far would be meniscus issues. The meniscus is a disc of cartilage in the knee that often tears in young athletes as well as older patients.” – Dr. Jonathan Hersch, orthopaedic surgeon, sports medicine, shoulder, knee and hip arthroscopy.
Arthroscopic Knee Surgery
Arthroscopic knee surgery is used to diagnose and treat a number of knee joint conditions. With the arthroscopic approach, small incisions are made that allow the doctor to insert a high-powered fiber optic camera and surgical instruments into the knee area. As the doctor watches a monitor linked to the camera, he or she can address the specific needs inside the knee joint.
This type of knee surgery is used for conditions like torn meniscus, torn or damaged anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) or posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), swollen or damaged lining of the joint, misaligned kneecap, small pieces of broken cartilage in the knee joint, removal of Baker’s cyst, and some fractures of the bones of the knee. Advantages of knee arthroscopy include minimal scarring, reduced pain and bleeding, and lower chance of infection than open surgery.
Total Knee Replacement
This procedure entails the complete replacement of the worn-out cartilage surfaces of the knee joint. It is not a literal replacement of the knee itself, but instead a resurfacing procedure. Only a small amount of the bone is removed while muscles, tendons, and ligaments are left intact. The worn cartilage is replaced with prosthetic elements deigned using an alloy of cobalt, chromium and molybdenum along with a plastic component made with ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene. These materials have been utilized for more than 30-years and have proven to be successful for this procedure. Total knee replacements can be done as an outpatient or one night stay in the hospital.
Partial Knee Replacement
In a minimally-invasive partial knee replacement procedure, an incision of about three to five inches is made to allow for insertion of the knee replacement. This results in minimal damage to surrounding muscles and tendons around the knee. Compared to conventional surgery with a larger incision, benefits of minimally invasive surgery include:
- Less discomfort, swelling and blood loss
- Shorter hospitalization and rehabilitation
- Ability to return to work sooner
During the operation, the surgeon checks all three compartments of the knee for cartilage damage and to make sure the ligaments are intact. The affected cartilage is then removed and the ends of the femur and tibia are capped with metal coverings that are held in place to the bone with cement. A plastic insert is placed between the two metal parts to ensure a smooth gliding surface.
Patients can start to put weight on their knee immediately after surgery. They usually can walk without a cane several weeks after surgery, but may need physical therapy for a few months. Not surprising, patients who are most likely to experience positive outcomes from the surgery are those who follow recommendations for rehabilitation.
Most types of exercise are allowed after surgery, including walking, swimming and biking. However, patients should avoid high-impact activities such as jogging. Patients typically experience less pain than they did before surgery and can resume most regular activities by six weeks after surgery. For more information about minimally-invasive partial knee replacement, talk with your doctor.
“I have used Dr. Jonathan Hersch for multiple orthopedic problems and always had a great experience.”