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Knee News

Strict Patient Selection for Success Using Oxford Unicompartmental Knee Replacement

When only one side of the knee joint wears out, a total knee replacement isn't necessary. A unicompartmental knee replacement (UKR) can be done. Studies show that one unicompartmental implant stands out. The Oxford UKR has been used with a select group of patients with excellent results.

In this review, surgeons from the Department of Orthopedics at the University of Minnesota report on 54 articles published with results of the Oxford implant. The implant was still working well for more than 90 per cent of the patients after 15 years.

Revision surgery was needed for patients who went on to develop disabling arthritis in the other half of the joint. A few patients had revision surgery for implants that came loose. Failures were most often linked with patients who did not have a normal anterior cruciate ligament (ACL).

Overall, the authors report the greatest success with Oxford unicompartmental implants under the following conditions:
  • a normal ACL
  • varus deformity of the knee that can be corrected
  • the presence of full-thickness cartilage
  • patient must not be obese or significantly overweight

    Age does not seem to be a factor. Patients ranged in age from 30 to 90 years old. Poor or moderate results were usually traced back to one of the conditions listed. Early failure and technical problems were most common in patients who were obese.

    The conclusion made by these authors is that with carefully selected patients, the Oxford UKR is a safe, reliable, and long-lasting choice for arthritis confined to one side of the knee joint.


    Gaurav Khanna, MD, and Bruce A. Levy, MD. Oxford Unicompartmental Knee Replacement: Literature Review. In Orthopedics. May 2007. Vol. 30. No. 5/Supplement. Pp. 11-18.

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    *Disclaimer:* The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.
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