Conditions & Treatments

Knee Replacement

At South County Orthopedic Specialists in Orange County, California, Dr. Lance Montgomery and Dr. Larry Gersten are knee replacement specialists.  Together they have treated thousands of patients with knee arthritis and related conditions and are specialists in the most advanced joint replacement techniques.

Knee replacement surgery is one of the most successful procedures in all of medicine. It is a reliable, safe and effective treatment for osteoarthritis of the knee that causes knee pain and disability.

It has revolutionized the quality of life for millions of patients, is proven to be cost-effective, and over 90% of patients find dramatic pain relief after this procedure. In the U.S., there are almost one million knee replacements each year. The growing number of knee replacements is due to aging baby boomers and the obesity epidemic. Women account for two thirds of knee replacement surgeries. Knee replacements deliver years of health and activity to a patient’s life.

Minimally invasive knee surgery achieves a painless and durable result due to significant evolution in prosthetic design, material science and instrumentation. Minimally invasive knee replacement surgery has been proven to significantly decrease post-op pain, and blood loss.  The key is earlier return of quadriceps function. A major advantage over traditional knee replacement surgery.

At South County Orthopedic Specialists (SCOS), we employ the most recent advancements for joint replacement patients, and tailor the surgery for each patient’s individual needs. Our goal is improved quality of care, stellar outcomes and our patients’ satisfaction.

What causes chronic knee pain and disability?

The most common cause is osteoarthritis or wear and tear that occurs as we age.  The cartilage wears out causing the bones to rub against each other which results in stiffness and knee pain. Knee replacement achieves a painless and durable solution to this injury.

 What is Knee Replacement?

It is surgery to treat knees that have been severely damaged by arthritis, to relieve pain, and to restore mobility and quality of life. It involves the removal of damaged and diseased bone and cartilage from the thigh bone, the shin bone and the knee cap, which is replaced with an artificial joint made of metal, plastic and polymers.

When knee pain is so severe that a patient cannot sleep at night, or the pain prevents the patient from comfortably carrying out daily activities, and the knee has not improved with nonsurgical treatments, a knee replacement is an appropriate solution.

Partial or Full Knee Replacement?

Total knee replacement surgery is performed when the knee is worn on all sides of the joint. Partial knee replacement surgery is performed if only one side of the knee is arthritic, and causes disability.

If there is bone on bone disease, a partial knee replacement can replace the worn out parts.

The best candidates for partial knee replacements are patients who do not lead an overly active life, have good range of motion and stable knee ligaments. Minimally invasive knee replacement surgery is available at South County Orthopedic Specialists for total knee and partial knee replacement.

Nonsurgical Management of Osteoarthritis

  • Acupuncture
  • Cane
  • Crutches
  • Exercise
  • Strength training
  • Weight management
  • Acetaminophen
  • Intra articular corticosteroid and hyaluronic acid injections
  • NSAIDs, Opioids

Minimally Invasive Knee Replacement

  • Minimally invasive knee replacement surgery requires significantly less cutting of the soft tissues, and less blood loss, which reduces post operation pain and speeds recovery. The technique is designed to spare the quadriceps tendons and muscles in the front of the thigh.
  • Successful techniques are used to implant clinically proven prostheses.
  • Rehab is critical to full mobility.
  • Multi-modal anesthesia for pain management before, during and after surgery reduces short term pain and hospital stay, reduces the need for opiate medication by 35-40%. Post operation pain control is important because it leads to earlier mobility. It also offers improved long term outcomes.
  • Rapid recovery is a personalized approach to care that will get a patient back on his or her feet quickly. Within hours of surgery, patients are out of bed and engaging in physical therapy for range of motion. This fast tract approach aims to optimize each patient’s journey to recovery. It includes education about one’s personalized surgery, preparing one’s home for after surgery, and physical therapy exercises to help one return home sooner.

Minimally invasive knee replacement surgery is not for everyone. Your SCOS surgeon will conduct a complete evaluation to determine the best treatment options for you.

Success is dependent in part on the surgeon’s skill and in part on the patient’s commitment to post-operation physical therapy. After a total knee replacement, the key to success is exercise, muscle building and weight optimization.

Risks associated with knee replacement surgery include…

  • Anesthesia risks
  • Nerve injury
  • Blood loss
  • Blood clots
  • Infection

Artificial knees can wear out. Failure of an artificial knee is higher if the joint is stressed with high impact activities or excess weight. Generally, replacements last about 20 years.

At SCOS you will find joint replacement surgeons with whom you can be comfortable and confident. They have the necessary skills and expertise to undertake this technically challenging surgery.

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