This recently developed and described quadriceps-sparing technique has allowed rapid rehabilitation following total knee replacement, including faster return to full knee motion with markedly improved pain control, and shorter hospital stays. Traditional total knee arthroplasty, consisting of resurfacing of the femur, tibia, and knee cap, together with re-alignment of the leg, can be accomplished through a small incision.
Facilitated through advanced knee instrumentation tools designed by innovative surgeons and engineers, this technique is performed without cutting any major muscle or tendon in the front of the knee cap. Avoidance of turning the knee cap over for exposure results in a dramatic reduction in post-operative pain. Likewise, quadriceps muscle strength above the knee is almost fully intact the day after surgery due to its lack of disruption. This facilitates more comfortable range of motion and rapid return to bending, standing, and walking without walker or crutches.
Like the two-incision total hip arthroplasty, patients should be aware that the minimally invasive total knee arthroplasty is not for everyone. Patients are advised to consult with their physician if interested in this recent advance in surgery.