Knee replacement surgery — also known as knee arthroplasty (ARTH-row-plas-tee) —
can help relieve pain and restore function in severely diseased knee joints. During
knee replacement, a surgeon cuts away damaged bone and cartilage from your thighbone,
shinbone and kneecap and replaces it with an artificial joint made of metal alloys,
high-grade plastics and polymers.
A total knee replacement is a surgical procedure whereby the diseased knee joint is replaced with artificial material. The knee is a hinge joint which provides motion at the point where the thigh meets the lower leg
The thighbone (or femur) abuts the large bone of the lower leg (tibia) at the knee joint. During a total knee replacement, the end of the femur bone is removed and replaced with a metal shell. The end of the lower leg bone (tibia) is also removed and replaced with a channeled plastic piece with a metal stem.
Depending on the condition of the kneecap portion of the knee joint, a plastic "button" may also be added under the kneecap surface. The artificial components of a total knee replacement are referred to as the prosthesis.