Finding the best knee surgeons
Over 100,000 knee replacement operations take place in the UK annually - the vast majority, perhaps unsurprisingly, in the over 60's. This procedure is safe and effective. The aim, of course, is to increase mobility and remove pain.
Over recent years the design of knee implants has advanced, leading to improved function and feel, and surgical techniques have been finessed, resulting in better outcomes. Information on the long-term effectiveness of the different types of surgical technique and implant is collected and published by a number of national registries and this is available to the general public.
For the last two decades the National Joint Registry (NJR) has collected and published vast amounts of data on joint replacement surgery including the outcome success of hospitals and individual surgeons making it possible to compare and contrast different surgical approaches and results. The surgical performance ratings for each knee specialist can be found at https://surgeonprofile.njrcentre.org.uk where it is also possible to see information on the revision rates for each surgeon at five and ten years.
An informed choice of knee specialist
Totalhealth is fortunate to have a number of the best London-based knee surgeons writing for us including those listed below (NB in alphabetical order!). Each surgeon has their own individual approach, and it is revealing, interesting and important to see the differences when trying to assess who may be best the best choice for you:
- Mr Charles Gibbons – Partial knee replacement specialist
- Prof Nicola Maffulli - knee surgery for sports injuries
- Mr Ian McDermott - performs only knee surgery, is a specialist in tailored knee replacement surgery, and the "custom fit" knee replacement. Author of Benefits of customised knee replacement surgery.
- Mr Dinesh Nathwani - Specialises in Computer Navigation and Knee Joint Replacement
- Mr Sam Rajaratnam - performs only knee surgery, and is consistently rated one of the top performing knee surgeons. In his articles for Total Health, Sam explains, "A good outcome is where the patient’s quality of life is significantly improved after their joint replacement".
- Mr Panos Thomas – Specialist in non-surgical treatments for the knee
- Mr Howard Ware – Total knee replacement expert
- Mr Michael Wilkinson – Sprained knee specialist (nb now retired)
- Mr Charles Willis-Owen - Specialist in Cruciate Ligament Injuries
As Mr Howard Ware commenting on the NJR explains, "All patients have to complete a signed consent form agreeing to be entered onto the database. The type of operation, the need for surgery, the type of artificial joint (implant), the surgeon and the hospital are logged. However, apart from the patient’s age and sex the patient’s identity is anonymous."
With patients increasingly asking more questions, demanding better outcomes and reviewing their choices, Mr Sam Rajaratnam is an advocate for transparent 'outcome measures'. He states:
"The ability to measure and communicate the effectiveness of surgeons and their outcomes is fundamental for patients."
Mr Ian McDermott says, "Make sure that the timing of any surgery is appropriate and that you’re offered the best specific option for you, personally, as an individual, with the best prosthesis".
See also the following highly informative articles on knee replacement surgery:
- What are The benefits of customised knee replacement surgery ?
- What are patient reported outcome measures (PROMS)?