Each year, millions of Americans suffer from knee pain. While knee issues often resolve with a little TLC, sometimes, surgery is required. For those in need of serious knee repair, the two common surgeries are total knee replacement and ACL reconstruction. Here’s how these two treatments compare.
Total knee replacement surgery replaces a damaged knee joint with artificial joint components. These components are made from state-of-the-art materials using advanced technology and materials for durability and strength. The artificial joint components work together, just like your natural joint parts.
During the surgery, a doctor makes a large incision to access the entire joint.
Next, they remove the damaged portions of the bones and attach the artificial components using special techniques.
After the surgery, you’ll go to a recovery area for a few hours before moving to a hospital room for a couple of days.
ACL surgery replaces the anterior cruciate ligament, one of four major ligaments that help your knee bend and move. ACL injuries usually occur when you pivot your knee quickly, like a rapid change of direction during a sport. Less commonly, they’re torn by trauma, like a severe fall.
During the procedure, the torn ligament is removed and replaced with a tendon graft.
A doctor then makes small holes in your thigh bone and shin bone, anchoring the tendon graft with screws.
ACL surgery is almost always performed on an outpatient basis, which means you’ll go home the same day.