What Types of Knee Replacement Devices Are There?


Quick Answer

There are over 150 knee replacement devices available, including mobile-bearing and fixed-bearing devices, and different types designed for partial knee replacement and total knee replacement, explains Healthline. All devices come in different shapes and sizes tailored to a patient's anatomy. At least two companies offer personalized knee replacement systems.

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Mobile-bearing devices offer a few extra degrees of rotation in the knee and work well for younger patients because they last longer and complement a more active lifestyle, says Healthline. Fixed-bearing devices are used in a majority of replacements, especially for older people who are less active who do not require a revision. Total knee replacements are the most common, but manufacturers also make devices for partial knee replacements that only require removal of part of the bone in the knee joint. A patient's posterior cruciate ligament may be removed or preserved during a total knee replacement, and different types of implants exist to accommodate either option.

Some prosthetic designs include gender-specific options, but there is no evidence that these are more effective, notes Healthline. Manufacturers use materials such as titanium, cobalt-chromium alloys and polyethylene to create durable, smooth and flexible prosthetic devices. The composition of prosthetic components is crucial because they must not leach into the body or cause rejection or allergic reactions, and they must withstand the forces a human knee tolerates.

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