The two main types of knee replacement surgery include a total knee replacement and a partial knee replacement, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. These surgeries may also involve added joint components, notes NIHSeniorHealth.
NIHSeniorHealth describes total knee replacement as a procedure that replaces the entire knee joint. In contrast, with partial knee replacement, only the damaged part of the knee is replaced. In both cases, there are four basic steps to the surgical procedure after incision. First, the bone is prepared; second, the metal implants are positioned; third, the patella is resurfaced; and fourth, a spacer is inserted.