Episurf of the Knee
What is Episurf of the Knee?
Episurf of the knee is a custom-made resurfacing implant to treat articular cartilage lesions or damage on the thigh bone side of your knee joint.
Articular cartilage is the smooth tissue that covers the ends of bones allowing easy movement of your knee. Resurfacing is an operative procedure of repairing and restoring the damaged cartilage surface and the underlying bone.
Episurf, otherwise called episealer, is a metallic, press-fit implant.
Indications for Episurf of the Knee
The possible indications for the procedure can be:
- Severe musculoskeletal pain in the knee and reduced mobility
- Cartilage lesion that does not require replacement surgery
- Cartilage damage that is not fit for biological reconstruction (cartilage grafting)
Preparing for the Procedure
A few days prior to the surgery, your surgeon is likely to review your preoperative history and perform a medical or physical examination. You may also be expected to:
- Utilize a stationary cycle to maintain your knee motion range and its function
- Wash your knee regularly to keep it clean and decrease the risk of infection
- Avoid any scratches, cuts, bruises, etc. to maintain your skin in good shape
- Lastly, eat or drink nothing after midnight on the day of your surgery
How is the Procedure Performed?
Your surgeon is likely to perform the procedure under general or regional anesthesia using patient-specific guides. During the surgery:
- An incision of required size is made over your knee and the knee joint is accessed.
- The damaged cartilage surface is cut in a way to correspond to the shape of the implant.
- The shaved cartilage along with the underlying bone is removed from the joint.
- The Episurf implant is positioned and press-fit in place to recreate the joint surface.
- Finally, the incision over the knee is closed with stitches or sutures.
Risks Associated with Episurf of the Knee
As with any surgery, Episurf of the knee comes with potential risks such as:
- Allergic reactions, anesthesia-related issues
- Local swelling, temporary soreness, blood clot
- Early or late postoperative infection and bleeding
- Wear and damage to the opposing cartilage surface
- Postoperative bone fracture or tissue damage
- Inflammatory arthritis leading to joint damage
- Loosening, migration or loss of fixation of the implant
Post-Operative Care as You Recover from the Procedure
Post-operative care may involve:
- Use of pain-relieving medicines as directed by your surgeon
- Use of a walker, cane, or crutches for the first few days or weeks
- Limited weight bearing on the joint for a period of up to 6 weeks
- Strict adherence to activity restrictions and rehabilitation exercises
- Follow-up visits at regular intervals or as recommended by your surgeon
Benefits of Episurf of the Knee
Episurf is relatively easy to implant into your knee and helps you with:
- Near normal cartilage surface
- Early mobilization and weight-bearing
- Rapid rehabilitation, less recovery time
- Reduced or no pain, improved knee function