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Knee replacement surgery

Pain in your knee can be a real inconvenience and can stop you living the life you want to lead. You may struggle to walk any distance or do normal tasks around the house and garden. But, knee pain does not have to be lived with.

Our knee service is consultant-led with patients seeing the same consultant from their initial consultation and diagnosis through to surgery and post-discharge care.  Our expert orthopaedic surgeons are supported by a fully-equipped diagnostic department offering onsite MRI scanning, x-rays and ultrasound, and work alongside a team of musculoskeletal physiotherapists to help patients return to full mobility as quickly as possible.

You don’t need private medical insurance to come to the knee clinic.  If you’re a self-paying patient, you don’t necessarily even need a GP referral.  Just call us to arrange an appointment – and we’ll do the rest.

Meet our knee specialists

To book an appointment please call 0800 328 7555


Should I have knee replacement surgery?

Knee replacement surgery is usually carried out when arthritis has affected the knee or the knee has been injured. The cartilage which covers the bone becomes worn away, which causes pain. The knee may also be visibly swollen. 

What does the operation involve?

A knee replacement is a procedure to remove your damaged knee joint and replace it with an artificial one.  If only some of the joint is damaged, your surgeon may be able to repair or replace just the damaged parts. When the entire joint is damaged, a total knee replacement is done. 

Surgery is performed under general anaesthetic, typically taking between an hour and an hour and a half.

Your surgeon will make a cut on the front of your knee and remove the damaged joint surfaces. They will replace these with an artificial knee joint made of metal, plastic, ceramic, or a combination of these materials (see figure 1).

Typical knee replacement joint

Figure 1 - Typical knee replacement joint

After knee placement

Usually, you will stay in hospital for 3-4 days, but your consultant will advise.

Before discharge your physiotherapist will give you some exercises to help get your new knee moving and make sure you are confident at walking up and down stairs before you go home.

It’s usual to return to see your consultant as an outpatient after your operation. You may also need to have stitches removed. We’ll also give you some pain relief medication to take with you.

Getting back to normal

When you go home, you may need some help with shopping and household chores. But, it’s important to gradually increase your physical activity each day, and continue with the physiotherapy exercises. You will need to keep using crutches or a walking stick for a while.

Everyone heals differently. You will continue to improve over the next six to twelve months.

This webpage is intended for information purposes only and should not replace advice that your relevant health professional would give you.