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CUSTOM MADE KNEE REPLACEMENT

WHAT IS IT?

A custom made knee replacement is manufactured for each patient individually based on a CT scan to match their unique anatomy perfectly. The bone is prepared using patient specific 3D printed cutting jigs. Off the shelf knee replacements work well for about 80% of patients, but 20% still have discomfort or stiffness which is largely due to the many compromises the surgeon is forced to make when fitting the implant into the knee. A custom prosthesis removes the need for most of these compromises allowing for better function and less pain. Both total and partial replacements are available depending on your needs.

Learn more here.

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DO I NEED A CUSTOM MADE KNEE REPLACEMENT?

Knee replacement is the ultimate solution for the pain caused by arthritis in the joint when lifestyle changes, exercise and medication are no longer enough to manage your pain. You can find further advice on these here. If you still cannot walk as much as you would like because of pain or cannot sleep the time has come to consider surgery.

WHAT IS INVOLVED?

  • If you decide for a custom made knee replacement you will need a CT scan which is used to design your implants and 3D printed cutting jigs to fit the implant into the knee. Following the scan it will take about 6 weeks to manufacture your knee prosthesis components and the other single use custom made items.

  • Preparing for your operation

    • We need to make sure you are as fit and prepared as possible to minimise the risk of complications and to ensure a speedy and smooth recovery. You will have a pre-assessment to identify any correctable abnormalities such as high blood pressure, anaemia​ and diabetes. It is advised that you stop smoking and try to loose weight if applicable. If you have a BMI of 40 or more we may have to postpone your surgery until you can loose some weight.

    • We will ask you to take part in a joint replacement class which is run by our physiotherapists. This is an invaluable resource to prepare you for your joint replacement journey from pre-surgery exercises to rehabilitation afterwards. We are now offering personalised digital therapy using the moveUP service.

  • Surgical procedure

    • Knee replacement requires a general or spinal anaesthetic and the consultant carrying this out will discuss with you which one is best considering your circumstances and preferences.

    • During surgery a cut is made over the front of the knee and the joint is exposed. The damaged joint surfaces are removed and the bone is ​prepared for the artificial components using your own 3D printed cutting jigs. The implants are fixed to the bone using special bone cement. To conclude the operation the soft tissues and the skin are carefully closed.

  • Recovery

    • We aim to get you back on your feet and walking on the day of your operation. We will keep you comfortable using the least possible amount of pain medication.

    • Our physiotherapists will guide you through the process of how to get in and out of bed and use any walking aid you may require. All being well you can go home after one or two nights in hospital.

    • We will give you an exercise program for home and our physiotherapists will assess your progress regularly. You can walk and use your knee as you are comfortable. If you choose to use the moveUP digital therapy your follow-up and rehabilitation will be guided by the moveUP virtual clinic.

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WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?

  • All knee replacements aim to provide pain relief, increase range of movement and correct bow or knock knee deformities.

  • Custom made knee replacements have the added benefits of achieving this in more patients consistently.

  • There is less bleeding as the the canal of the thighbone does not need to be opened.

  • No overhang of the implants as they are designed to your anatomy.

  • More natural feel to the knee. 

For patient stories please see the Conformis patient pages.

WHAT ARE THE RISKS?

The overall benefit of surgery should far outweigh the risks, but it is important that you understand these in detail so you can make an informed decision. Learn more.