Joint replacement is one of the most successful procedures in modern medicine.  The surgical treatment of knee arthritis and other disorders by knee replacement is typically very reliable in reduction of pain and improvement in function.  Total (also known as full or complete) knee replacement (TKR) involves resurfacing of the end of the thigh and shin bones where the articulating surfaces are exposed, usually due to severe cartilage wear or joint damage.  The joint surfaces are replaced with metal on both sides, and a durable plastic placed in between.  As such, there is no more bone rubbing on bone, but rather metal articulating with a new plastic bearing, thereby re-establishing the joint mechanics and dimensions. 

This document is intended to provide information regarding total knee and partial knee replacement, less invasive surgery, risks and benefits of the procedure, outpatient joint replacement, and state-of-the-art surgical techniques.