Unilateral Knee Replacement Surgery in South Korea

Approximately 1.1 million knee replacement surgeries are performed across the world, of which, 600,000 are solely performed across the United States. The procedure is implemented in case of advanced bone degeneration diseases, irreparable knee injury or accidental damage to the ligament, or the joint as a whole. Although there is no specific age bar for the procedure to be performed, yet most of the candidates belong to 50 years to 80 years of age who suffer from bone degeneration diseases like arthritis, or osteoarthritis. The success rate of knee replacement surgery worldwide is fairly high and exceeds 90-92% on an average. Besides, knee arthroplasty cost varies from $2000 to $49,500 and can be availed from several major countries all across the world. 

What is Total Knee Replacement ?

Surgical procedure, that involves repairing of damage to both the knees, is termed as bilateral total knee replacement. The replacement is further distinguished into simultaneous as well as staged procedure, based on the procedure being performed on both the knees simultaneously or at a different time. The procedure involves removing the damaged or diseased portions of the knee joint, which has otherwise been affected by advanced arthritis. The portions removed from the end regions of the thigh bone and the shin bone is replaced by a prosthesis. This resurfacing thereby helps in restoring the normal functioning of the affected knee (hinge) joint. 

Ideal Candidate for Total Knee Replacement

Total knee replacement surgery is mostly performed in case of severe arthritis (both juvenile affecting the young and degenerative affecting the adults). However, it is performed mostly in patients above 50 years. One can be evaluated as a suitable candidate if the individual:

  • Has been suffering from prolonged knee arthritis
  • Has been unresponsive to physiotherapy and conditional treatments
  • Is unable to perform daily activities due to pain and inflammation
  • Is otherwise devoid of any severe medical condition. 

Factors Affecting the Cost of Total Knee Replacement

The total knee replacement cost depends on a number of factors, which are:

  • The type of total knee implants used
  • Material of implants used, which are made up of plastic, ceramic or metal
  • Country where the procedure is being performed
  • Involvement of one or both knee
  • Proficiency of the surgeons
  • Healthcare benefits availed.
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About the Total Knee Replacement Surgery U/L

Knee Replacement Surgery cost varies all across the world, where countries like the US, Australia and Canada provide the treatment at high prices. In countries like Taiwan,India, and Mexico Total Knee Replacement Surgery is far more affordable and is now offered at premium quality heathcare services.The knee joint is the largest joint in the body that aids in the mobility. During a knee replacement surgery, the diseased or damaged knee joint is replaced with an artificial joint made of metal or plastic. Your doctor would recommend a knee replacement surgery to you if you have a progressive pain even during sitting and lying down that leads to decreased or painful mobility.

Conditions that require a Knee Replacement Surgery

The joint ailments that may trigger a need for knee replacement surgery include:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Post-traumatic arthritis
  • Knee deformities
  • Osteonecrosis or avascular necrosis
  • Swelling or inflammation that does not decrease

Depending on whether just one or both the knees are affected, a surgeon may conduct unilateral or bilateral knee replacement surgery. A unilateral knee replacement surgery refers to the removal of the diseased or damaged joint of a single knee and its replacement with prosthesis.

A unilateral knee replacement surgery can be recommended to an individual from any age group, depending on the extent of pain and immobility. The surgery helps provide relief from pain and immobility.

Types of Knee Replacement Surgeries

Total knee replacement surgery:

In total knee replacement surgery, the whole knee joint is removed and replaced with the artificial knee joint.

Partial knee replacement surgery:

The partial knee replacement or unicompartmental surgery involves the replacement of only the damaged part of the knee joint.

Minimally invasive surgery:

The total knee replacement surgery and partial knee replacement surgery can be performed by a minimally invasive procedure. This is an advanced surgical procedure that involves three to five-inch incision or smaller, which causes less pain and fast recovery whereas the usual traditional procedure involves 8 to 12-inch incision.

How is Total Knee Replacement Surgery U/L performed?

  • You will be instructed to not to eat or drink anything for 6 to 12 hours before the surgery. Anesthesia will be administered to you. Either general anaesthesia or spinal anaesthesia is used. General anaesthesia makes you unconscious during the procedure and spinal anaesthesia causes numbness of the lower part of your body.
  • Then the front side of the affected knee is cleaned with an antiseptic and an 8 to 12 inch or 3 to 5 inch (minimally invasive surgery) incision is made on your knee. The quadriceps muscle is detached from your kneecap. The kneecap is removed and metal or plastic parts prosthesis is attached using cement or other fixing material.
  • The duration of the procedure is approximately one to three hours. After the procedure, the nurse will monitor you for one to two hours in the recovery room. Intravenous fluids and blood transfusion may be required to replenish the fluids lost during the surgery.
  • Physical therapy will be initiated after the day of the surgery to improve the range of motion of the joint. Assistive devices can be used to pursue a normal daily life.

Recovery from Total Knee Replacement Surgery U/L

The following should be ensured to minimize knee replacement recovery time

  • You should avoid falls and perform physical therapy for fast recovery and increase the range of motion.
  • Use raised toilet seats for greater comfort.
  • You should use a comfortable chair and foot stool that elevates your leg.
  • Perform knee strengthening exercises that increase your muscle strength and mobility.
  • Keep your wound clean and dry to prevent infection.

Patient Stories

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the health care infrastructure of South Korea / Why should opt for South Korea as a destination for your medical treatment?
South Korea is recognized for its strict rules and regulations which have kept the country in strict discipline. As an upside, the country has well-maintained regulations for every process and impressive medical healthcare facilities which have garnered thousands of visitors from across the world. The reason for opting for hospitals in South Korea is the astounding treatment options available at a very cost-effective price range, which is undoubtedly more affordable than most of the developed countries across the world. Besides the well-planned infrastructure, the treatment in South Korea and the alternatives offered are tempting enough. Apart from that, the country also flaunts high success rates and has thus been able to cure some of the most complex diseases in the world.
What are the conditions of the hospitals in South Korea? Are they JCI certified? What is the quality of the support staff in the hospitals?
The Joint Commission International (JCI) is a global leader in health care accreditation. JCI accreditation is considered a gold standard in worldwide health care. It provides the most skilled and experienced healthcare professionals in the medical industry, as evaluators of the rigorous international standards in healthcare quality and patient safety. YUHS Severance Hospital + Gangnam Severance Hospital is a JCI certified hospital in South Korea.
Are the doctors/surgeons in South Korea of the best quality?
The doctors and surgeons providing treatments in South Korea are globally recognized for their service in the medical field. Furnished with degrees from reputed universities and decades of training and experience, the doctors have earned high success rates throughout their professional careers. The doctors have to undergo rigorous training to keep up with the strict protocol and measures of hospitals in South Korea. Hence, quality is maintained.
What is the process for obtaining a medical visa in South Korea?
The Korean embassy follows a strict protocol for obtaining a visa for traveling to the country. The necessary documents (photocopies and original) have been listed on their official website and should be strictly adhered to. The candidate also has to produce necessary papers stating the medical cause and referral certificate signed by the registered medical practitioner. Although these need to be taken care of by the candidate, the rest of the procedures and further visa assistance is managed by the sponsors in most cases. A Medical Dependent Visa is granted to those who are accompanying a patient traveling to Sount Korea for medical treatment on a Medical Visa. This visa can be given to a close relative/family member or a friend of the patient. Please note that relevant letters/documents explaining details of the treatment, signed and stamped by the concerned hospitals/doctors, a declaration from the patient or an immediate family member is also required confirming the escort travel along with the patient.
What support services does MediGence provide in South Korea?
MediGence enables you to plan and manage your medical decisions better. These are some of our services offered:
  • Expert Opinion
    We help you seek an Expert Opinion on your diagnosis and treatment from an experienced team of doctors at MediGence and specialists from a reputable hospital.
  • Hospital Recommendation
    We recommend a hospital or a healthcare institution that is best suited for you, based on your ailment and its criticality.
  • 360-degree Hospital Review
    We give you a transparent and holistic view of the hospital and its infrastructure, accreditation, facilities, and expertise to give you confidence.
  • Doctor Validation and Communication
    We share a comprehensive profile of the treating doctor and also arrange a call to clear queries regarding treatment if needed.
  • Options to Choose From
    Based on your choice of destination and other preferences, we provide you multiple options with respect to hospitals and doctors to choose from.
  • 24X7 Patient Care Support
    A dedicated patient case manager stays in constant touch with you to help you at every step of the decision-making process and resolve queries that you may have.
  • Transparent Treatment Cost and Other Expenses
    We give a clear and accurate indication of the total cost of treatment including treatment, stay, meals, and other expenses.
  • Visa Assistance
    We provide and help prepare documentation for visa approval and coordinate with the embassy to expedite the visa process.
  • Accommodation Arrangements
    We propose to you a choice of accommodation based on your preference such as long stay, short stay, or luxury properties.
Which are the best cities in South Korea for medical treatment?
Treatment in South Korea is affordable. Seoul is the capital of South Korea and one of the main cities for healthcare. Seoul and Daegu have some of the best hospitals in South Korea. Busan, Incheon, and Ulsan also have developing healthcare facilities.

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