Joint replacement consists of replacing painful, arthritic, worn or cancerous parts of the joint with artificial surfaces shaped in such a way as to allow joint movement.
Arthroplasty [from Greek arthron, joint, limb, articulate, + -plassein, to form, mould, forge, feign, make an image of] is a procedure of orthopedic surgery, in which the arthritic or dysfunctional joint surface is replaced with something better or by remodelling or realigning the joint by osteotomy or some other procedure.
Previously, a popular form of arthroplasty was interpositional arthroplasty with interposition of some other tissue like skin, muscle or tendon to keep inflammatory surfaces apart or excisional arthroplasty in which the joint surface and bone was removed leaving scar tissue to fill in the gap. Other forms of arthroplasty include resection(al) arthroplasty, resurfacing arthroplasty, mold arthroplasty, cup arthroplasty, silicone replacement arthroplasty, etc. Osteotomy to restore or modify joint congruity is also an arthroplasty.
For the last 45 years the most successful and common form of arthroplasty is the surgical replacement of arthritic or destructive or necrotic joint or joint surface with prosthesis. For example a hip joint that is affected by osteoarthritis may be replaced entirely (total hip arthroplasty) with a prosthetic hip. This would involve replacing both the acetabulum (hip socket) and the head and neck of the femur. The purpose of this procedure is to relieve pain, to restore range of motion and to improve walking ability, thus leading to the improvement of muscle strength.
Jul 15, 2010