Knee Replacements + Reconstruction

Dr. Denis Nam performs over 1,000 hip and knee replacements and revisions annually, including some of Rush University Medical Center’s most complex cases. His minimally invasive techniques reduce pain during recovery and have patients walking the same day.

Total Knee Replacement

Dr. Nam and his team believe in an individualized, patient-specific approach to total knee replacements to ensure the best possible result.

Compared to the standard 6-10 inch incision, Dr. Nam creates a small, 4-5 inch incision centered over the front of the knee cap. Unlike most surgeons, Dr. Nam’s approach during surgery is tailored towards your best outcome to minimize pain, weakness, and swelling during recovery. Using minimally invasive techniques, he then removes the arthritic surfaces of the bones at the end of the femur and tibia where cartilage has been lost. He then carefully balances the soft tissues to restore the functional alignment of the knee.

Dr. Nam’s custom-designed sizing instruments allow him to set the appropriate size and rotation of the prosthesis (artificial knee) for each individual patient. Adjustments can be made in precise increments to optimize knee stability and improve function. He then creates a smooth surface by removing any remaining bone spurs and freshens the undersurface of the knee cap.

All three components, the tibial, femoral, and patella, are then secured to the bone using precision and care. Most commonly, this is performed using cement, but Dr. Nam may choose to use a cementless knee prosthesis for some patients. After securing the components in place, a polyethylene liner is locked into the prosthesis. This result is a smooth, gliding surface of the knee.

Dr. Nam performs a final check to ensure excellent stability and range of motion of the knee. He then cleanses the knee thoroughly prior to closing the knee precisely with sutures to ensure optimal healing of the wound. On average, the procedure only takes one hour to perform from start to finish.

After surgery, the patient is taken to the recovery room. Each patient will work with a physical therapist on the day of surgery to walk and navigate stairs, a key indicator that you are ready to go home. The majority of patients will be discharged home on the same day of surgery, but some will stay in the hospital for one night to monitor any pre-existing medical conditions.

MAKOPlasty Robotic Total Knee Replacement

Dr. Nam has performed over 5,000 joint replacement cases with excellent outcomes utilizing traditional manual surgery techniques. And as technology evolves, physicians have expanded options for how surgery is performed. For some patients, robotic surgery may be an option. Prior to a MAKOPlasty total knee replacement, Dr. Nam obtains a CT scan of the patient’s knee to thoroughly understand each individual’s anatomy, and create a patient-specific, 3-dimensional plan.

Dr. Nam is among the first surgeons to perfect cutting-edge robotic replacements.  The result? A more comfortable, natural-feeling knee. Robotic assistance is the most innovative and advanced technology available, providing a level of precision and accuracy that cannot always be achieved with manual techniques. During a robotic-assisted total knee replacement, Dr. Nam removes the arthritic bone using a robotic-assisted surgical arm. Using real-time bone and ligament information, Dr. Nam then customizes the knee replacement to optimize the function and stability for each individual patient.

Considering a robotic-assisted joint replacement?

Partial Knee Replacement

Dr. Nam and his team believe in an individualized, patient-specific approach to partial knee replacements to ensure the best possible result. During a partial knee replacement, only one  area of the knee (either the inside, outside, or front) is replaced. 

Compared to a standard 6-10 inch incision, Dr. Nam creates a small, 4-5 inch incision centered over the front of the knee cap. Using minimally invasive techniques and specialized instruments, Dr. Nam removes the arthritic bone from the affected area while preserving the healthy, unaffected areas of the knee. 

As with any replacement, Dr. Nam’s custom-designed sizing instruments allow him to set the appropriate size and rotation of the prosthesis for each individual patient. Adjustments can be made in precise increments to optimize knee stability and function. He then creates a smooth surface by removing any remaining bone spurs. 

Dr. Nam then secures the components to the bone using cement. After securing the components in place, a polyethylene liner is locked into the tibial prosthesis. The result is a smooth, gliding surface of the knee.

When the front of the knee is replaced, a polyethylene button is secured to the undersurface of the knee cap. Dr. Nam performs a final check to ensure excellent stability and range of motion of the knee. He then cleanses the knee prior to closing. On average, the procedure only takes one hour to perform from start to finish.

After surgery, the patient is taken to the recovery room. Each patient will work with a physical therapist on the day of surgery to walk and navigate stairs. The majority of patients will be discharged home on the same day of surgery, but some will stay in the hospital for one night to monitor any pre-existing medical conditions.

MAKOPlasty Partial Knee Replacement

Dr. Nam has performed over 5,000 joint replacement cases with excellent outcomes utilizing traditional manual surgery techniques, including partial replacements. And as technology evolves, physicians have expanded options for how this surgery is performed. For some patients, robotic surgery may be an option.

Dr. Nam is among the first surgeons to perfect cutting-edge robotic partial replacements—which result in a more natural-feeling knee. Prior to a MAKOPlasty partial knee replacement, Dr. Nam obtains a CT scan of the patient’s knee to thoroughly understand each individual’s anatomy, and create a patient-specific, 3-dimensional plan. Robotic assistance is the most innovative and advanced technology available, providing a level of precision and accuracy that cannot be achieved with manual techniques.

Considering a robotic-assisted partial joint replacement?

Think a knee replacement could be right for you?

A Patient-Centric Approach

From setting up any necessary appointments to one-on-one patient education, our team of experts is by your side from day one. You’ll stay informed and encouraged with optional text messages, and have access to your care team anytime.

Patient Resources

Considering a joint replacement is a big step. Our team cares deeply about your experience and works to help you understand what to expect throughout your journey. From practice information to tools to help you anticipate what’s to come, we offer the resources you need to feel cared for and confident.

Patient Success Stories

Knee Replacement
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Two doctors. Two very different experiences. See how Dr. Nam’s expertise and minimally invasive knee replacement helped this triathlete get back on the bike and living the life she loves.

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