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What is total knee replacement?

A total knee replacement is really a mechanical cartilage replacement with an artificial surface.  The knee itself is not replaced, as is commonly thought, just the surfaces where the cartilage on the ends of the bones has worn away.

This is done with a metal alloy on the femur and tibia, with a plastic bearing sliding surface between the metal parts and beneath the kneecap (patella).  This creates a new smooth cushion and a functioning joint that does not hurt.

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