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Knee Replacement

Knee replacement is a permanent solution to debilitating knee pain that is often the result of severe arthritis. It involves resurfacing the affected, arthritic joint, with man made replacements. Contact Dr. Kruse for more information »

The knee is the largest weight-bearing joint in the body, and as such, it endures a large amount of stress during even basic movements, such as standing. Due to the amount of stress the joint is under, the knee is one of the most frequently injured joints in the body. The most common causes of knee pain are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Osteoarthrtis (also known as wear and tear arthritis) is a degenerative disease that causes the cartilage that cushions the knee to wear away. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes inflammation, cartilage deterioration, and damage to the bone surfaces in both knee joints.

Patients over the age of 50 suffering from a form of advanced arthritis of the knee will often benefit most from a long-term treatment, such as knee replacement surgery. For younger patients, Dr. Kruse will often consider alternative treatments first.

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Minimally Invasive Approach to Knee Replacement

Knee replacement surgery, also known as knee arthroplasty, is an in-patient procedure that requires the use of general or spinal anesthesia administered within a hospital or surgery center. Based on the amount and location of joint damage, Dr. Kruse will determine whether total or partial knee replacement will offer the best results. Before the procedure, Dr. Kruse will meet with the patient to discuss which artificial joint will best fit the patients needs. He will consider the patient's age, weight, activity level, and overall bone health when selecting the type of replacement.

For patients with damage to more than one area of the knee, Dr. Kruse will typically recommend total knee replacement surgery. During the procedure, Dr. Kruse will often use minimally invasive techniques to remove mear millimeters of the surface of the femur, tibia and patella with special resurfacing tools before the final implants are placed. He will then shape the surfaces of the lower thighbone and the upper shinbone, before using specialized tools to secure the artificial joint to the reformed bone surfaces.

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Partial knee replacement is recommended for patients with damage to only one compartment of the knee joint. During a partial knee replacement procedure, only the damaged areas of the thighbone and shinbone are replaced with a metal and plastic prosthesis.

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Newest Advances in Knee Implants

To create the most natural fit possible, Dr. Kruse will frequently use custom-fit or gender-specific implants. Custom-fit knee implants are based on the patient's unique anatomy, designed from a 3-D model of the patient's knee created out of MRI images. Dr. Kruse will also use customized guides to attach the individualized implant, to match the anatomy of the knee as closely as possible.

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Gender-specific implants are designed to better match the female anatomy. They are thinner and have a much more prominent curvature than a traditional prosthetic knee implant. Female patients, and patients with small bone structure, who receive a gender-specific implant often experience less post-op pain and a more natural movement than with a traditional artificial joint.

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Post-Op Recovery and Rehabilitation

Total knee replacement patients are typically required to stay in the hospital for at least 2-3 days, to ensure proper recovery; however, partial knee replacement patients are frequently able to return home the same day. Following surgery, Dr. Kruse recommends patients use a walker, cane, or crutches for support until joint strength has returned, to help with mobilization and walking after surgery. Patients are instructed by physical therapists on which device will work best for them while still in the hospital. To help patients return strength and mobility to the treated knee, Dr. Kruse will create a custom physical therapy routine that will include both at home exercises and scheduled training with a physical therapist.

Knee Replacement in Minneapolis, MN

Specializing in minimally invasive surgery, Dr. Jay Kruse provides the highest quality orthopedic care to patients suffering from knee pain in the Minneapolis area. Dr. Kruse is renowned for his state-of-the-art treatment of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. For more information about knee replacement surgery, schedule an appointment with Dr. Kruse at his Coon Rapids or Fridley office at (763) 786-9543.