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Q: I have severe knee arthritis. Should I have a total or partial knee replacement?

Posted August 13, 2014 in Advice Column, West Des Moines

A: Total and partial knee replacement can give equally good results if used in the proper situations. Typically, of all the knees requiring replacement, only 10-20 percent will qualify for partial knee replacement.

The knee is made up of three compartments. If the arthritis involves only one compartment, the patient may benefit from a partial knee replacement. Either a partial or a total knee replacement performed by an experienced surgeon for the appropriate situation can result in a 98-99 percent success rate.

A partial knee replacement can result in a more rapid recovery and feel like a more natural knee once recovered. It can also eliminate a patient’s pain and restore function appropriate for the patient’s age. The decision regarding which option is right for you should be made with a surgeon who is proficient with both techniques and should be tailored to the patient’s individual needs.

Information provided by Dr. Patrick Sullivan, total joint surgeon, 6001 Westown Parkway, West Des Moines, (515) 224-5208.

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