Partial and Total

Knee Surgery

Partial Knee



If Arthritis affects only one side of your knee – usually the inner side – it may be possible to have a Partial (Unicompartmental) Knee Replacement. There are three compartments of the knee: the inner (medial), the outer (lateral) and the kneecap (patellofemoral).

If arthritis affects only one side of your knee – usually the inner side – it may be possible to have a half-knee replacement (sometimes called Unicompartmental or Partial Replacement). Because this involves less interference with the knee than a Total Knee Replacement it usually means a quicker recovery and better function.


Partial Knee Replacements can be carried out through a smaller cut (incision) than a total knee replacement, using techniques called reduced invasive or minimally invasive surgery. A smaller incision may further reduce the recovery time.

In order to be a candidate for Unicompartmental Knee Replacement, your Arthritis must be limited to one compartment of your knee.


In addition, if you have any of the following characteristics, you may not be eligible for the procedure:

• Inflammatory arthritis
• Significant knee stiffness
• Ligament damage


With proper patient selection, modern Unicompartmental Knee Replacements have demonstrated excellent medium- and long-term results in both younger and older patients.


Partial Knee Replacement patients usually experience less postoperative pain, less swelling, and have easier rehabilitation than patients undergoing Total Knee Replacement. In most cases, patients go home 1 to 3 days after the operation. Some patients go home the day of the surgery.


Research shows that people who have Partial Knee Replacements are more likely to have the knee revised than people who have a Total Knee Replacement. Even though the revision operation involves less interference with the knee it is often a more complex operation than total knee replacement.


Partial Knee Replacement can be considered at any age. For younger people, it offers the opportunity to preserve more bone, which is helpful if you need revision surgery at a later stage. For older people, Partial Knee Replacement is a less stressful operation with less pain and less risk of bleeding.

Partial Knee Replacement

Frequently asked questions

Total Knee


Knee replacement is knee surgery to repair worn arthritic knee joints or knee injuries using an artificial knee joint to help reduce pain and restore movement in your knee. Knee replacement surgery, also known as knee arthroplasty, replaces damaged, worn or diseased cartilage and bone in your knee joint with an artificial joint made of metal and plastic. It aims to reduce your pain and allow your joint to move in the same way as a natural joint so as to improve your mobility.


There are two main types of knee replacement:
• Total knee replacement (TKR) surgery – the whole of your existing knee joint is replaced.
• Partial knee replacement (PKR) – also called unicompartmental or half-knee replacement as only one side of your knee is replaced, used when knee arthritis is confined to one compartment of your knee.


Mr Webb will discuss the best knee replacement surgery for you and your knee anatomy needs. There are pros and cons of each type of surgery. Most people have knee replacement surgery under spinal anaesthetic with sedation. Mr Webb will make a cut down the front of your knee and move your kneecap to one side to reach your joint. He will remove worn or damaged surfaces from the end of your thigh bone and the top of your shin bone and shape them to fit your artificial knee joint. Cement is used to bond the new joint to your bones. Once the new joint is in place he will close your incision.


The usual reason for a Knee Replacement is Arthritis, with the most common type being Osteoarthritis. This is the gradual wear and tear of your knee joint that results in damage to your cartilage covering the surface of your joint and the bone underneath and is very painful. Other causes include Rheumatoid Arthritis, previous trauma or previous knee cartilage problems.


Mr Webb is pleased to be a pioneer in the north east of England of Robot Assisted Knee and Partial Knee Replacement. This offers precise personalised planning and surgery, with rapid recovery and return to function. Click here for more details about Robot Assisted Knee and Hip Replacement Surgery


Family running through woods

Robotic Arm Assisted Knee Replacement

What is a Knee Replacement?



Your GP may recommend non-surgical treatment options or refer you Mr Webb to discuss other options including a knee replacement operation. If you are overweight, you may be asked to lose weight as this will reduce the strain on your knee.


Most people who have a knee replacement by Mr Webb will stay one or two nights in hospital, with some going home the same day, but recovery times can vary. Once you’re able to be discharged, your hospital will give you advice about looking after your knee at home. You’ll need to use a frame or crutches at first and a physiotherapist will teach you exercises to help strengthen your knee.

Most people can stop using walking aids around 4-6 weeks after surgery, and start driving after about 6 weeks, although some can return sooner. Full recovery can take up to 2 years as scar tissue heals and your muscles are restored by exercise.

Knee replacement surgery is often recommended if you have:

• arthritis or an injured knee joint that is severely painful and, impairing your mobility, ability to do everyday tasks and your quality of life and sleep and
• tried non-surgical treatments, such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), physiotherapy and steroid injections and, they haven’t relieved your pain and helped your movement. Initially, you might visit your GP if you are experiencing persistent pain in your knee or you are finding it difficult to do normal things because of stiffness or loss of mobility. They may carry out a physical examination, and order X rays and blood tests to diagnose the underlying problem.

What conditions may lead to needing a Knee Replacement?

Recovering from Knee Replacement Surgery

Who might need a Knee Replacement?

Total Knee Replacement

Frequently asked questions