Department of Orthopedics and Sport Medicine at the Clinical Center of Friedrichshafen was established several decades ago and is currently one of the most reputable orthopedic centers in the South Germany. The Department has in its structure two interregional endoprosthetic centres for maximum care (in Weingarten and Friedrichshafen). Both of them were certified (in 2014 and 2015) as centers with maximal medical care.
The team of the department consists of orthopedic specialists, surgeons, physiotherapists, orthopaedic technicians and nursing staff, working closely together to ensure that each knee or hip surgery is a success. Head of the orthopedic department is Prof. MD E. Winter, whose main focus of activity are hip and knee resurfacing (partial replacement of knee joint).
About 2000 knee surgeries (among them around 200 knee osteotomy surgeries, 600 arthroscopic interventions and 700 knee joint replacements) are performed annually at the Clinic of Friedrichshafen. About 4 133 patients are treated on an outpatient basis at the Department of Orthopedic and Sport Medicine in Friedrichshafen.
Our doctors perform all kinds of knee surgeries, called to relieve pain and to restore the functionality. We treat especially often the following conditions:
We use minimally invasive surgical techniques wherever possible combined with the latest implants available for procedures such as knee (replacement) surgery. The special field of specialization is arthroscopic knee surgery and knee replacement surgery.
We are dedicated to using joint-sparing techniques wherever possible in knee surgery, therefore trying to preserve the natural joint for as long as possible by using such techniques as abrasion arthroplasty. However, if the joint is badly damaged and conservative joint therapy (anti-inflammation treatment or injection of steroids/hyaluron) doesn't help, a total or partial knee replacement might be required. Our surgeons, physicians, therapists and nursing staff in Friedrichshafen will help you before and after your knee surgery so that you can return to your normal life as soon as possible.
Pre-operative radiography (CT, MRI) and diagnostic knee arthroscopy allow to make a precise diagnosis and to minimize risks. In case of arthroscopic procedure the orthopedic surgeons can in some cases treat the pathology in a minimally invasive way and thus avoid the knee surgery.
Many aspects may provoke damage of joints and bones. Besides, functionality disorders in knee joints may be inborn. How to identify problems with knee joints? You may experience dumb or acute pain in knees when walking or running. It may also appear when you jump or make quick motions. Pain often occurs during knee-bend and lasts for several minutes or more. It may also be accompanied by crunching and clicking. Some people complain about unpleasant sensations during sports activities (jogging, swimming, cycling, etc.).
Pain may be colicky or constant – no matter what it is, if it persists for a long time, joints may be damaged. Problems may be caused by different aspects:
Besides, wearing of joints may also be caused by excessive physical load. This medical condition is typical of runners and weight-lifters. If you have pain in knees after exercises, it is better to cease training for some time and consult a doctor.
If knee damage is serious and conditioned by pathologies, operation is inevitable. As a rule, surgery is prescribed in serious cases including:
Surgery is also necessary after severe injuries – it allows restoring normal functioning of joints and muscles (implants are also used). Modern operations require minimal invasion, they are safe in almost any age, and require short recovery time.
The arthorscopic knee surgery can help in ligament stabilization and meniscus repair which can ensure better range of motion and a more natural functioning of knee after surgery.
Due to the visual support the surgeon can examine the inner and outer menisci, the cruciate ligaments, the surface of the cartilage on both the femoral and tibial heads and the patella. Damage to the cruciate ligaments should be treated without delay by means of appropriate knee surgery because it often causes early arthritis. The goal in the case of this much-feared sports injury is the restoration of the stability of the joint via arthroscopic knee surgery.
The degree of stability of the affected joint is an important criterion in the choice of the most suitable form of therapy. Annually the specialists at the Clinic of Friedrichshafen perform at least 300 arthroscopic surgeries on cruciate ligament.
Meniscus repair is also performed arthroscopically by smoothing the damaged meniscus in a procedure known as abrasion arthroplasty. Arthroscopic meniscus repair enables the surgeon to assess the damage very accurately by means of a small camera that is inserted into the joint via a small incision.
Computer-navigated surgery can help the surgeon align the patient's bone and implants with a very high degree of accuracy. Knee navigation surgery
Computer modeling prior to the surgery of knee replacement allows to plan the surgical process in finest detail and to increase the accuracy of knee replacement. Before knee replacement surgery at Friedrichshafen Clinic in Germany, the surgeon plans the procedure based on the diagnosis and the X-rays and selects the model, the implant size and the fixation method according to your individual case.
These new techniques (interasurgical navigation and planning software) are incorporated into the surgical environment of the Clinic of Friedrichshafen and help to achieve higher success rates.
The general indication for knee replacement surgery is osteoarthritis at its advanced stages. As a result of this disease knee cartilage gets extremely thin and in some places gets completely worn out. The joint surface can be deformed with bony growths, which results in pain, swelling and limited mobility in the affected knee.
The other indications for knee replacement are:
Modern orthopedics offers a number of techniques to do the knee replacement. The new biological materials and patient matched instrumentation allow the surgeons in 99,9% to eliminate the problem in such a way that a patient forgets about the troubling symptoms.
In severe cases of knee joint degeneration only the implantation of an "artificial knee joint" can help the patient to restore the knee functionality. The destroyed joint surfaces are removed and a metal component with polyethylene surface is introduced. Important is to mimic the biomechanics of natural joints as closely as possible.
The age, gender, bone quality, weight and regular activities of the patient all play a role in the implant choice. If the natural mechanical axis of the leg is restored after knee replacement surgery, patient can walk normally again and has no pain any more. There are about 180 different designs of knee implants. The most commonly used models are:
The metal components of the implant are produced of titanium or cobalt-chromium based alloys. The plastic parts are manifactured of ultra high molecular weight polyethylene. For younger patients we implement special implants made of ceramics or ceramic/metal mixtures.
The materials used for these synthetic joints are especially produced for medical purposes and are characterised by the highest degree of tolerance by human tissue. They also enable permanent, pain-free functioning of the joint after the procedure.
A total knee arthroplasty is the replacement of the entire affected joint by a synthetic implant. During the implantation of a synthetic joint, the worn cartilage of the femoral condyle and the tibial plateau is removed and replaced by femoral and tibial components.
In knee replacement surgery, a polyethylene surface is used as the friction surface between the femur and the tibia. Pre-existing loss of bone can be corrected in knee replacement surgery by making use of polyethylene components of different thicknesses, thereby compensating for the differences.
The last years have again witnessed breakthroughs in unicompartmental arthroplasty. The introduction of the minimally invasive parapatellar technique helped to achieve better therapeutic results (better motion and gait) and cut risks. Knee replacement surgery by means of a unicondylar endoprosthetics are used for patients when only half the joint (either inner or outer) is affected, provided that the capsule ligament apparatus and healthy cruciate and collateral ligaments are intact. Bicondylar knee resurfacing helps to reshape and repair those damaged surfaces. The major benefit of this surgery is that it helps to retain healthy cartilage, ligament and bone in your knee.
Partial knee replacement implants are much smaller than total knee implants and can be introduced into the body through minimally small incisions (3-4 cm). What is more the cost of the unicompartmental knee surgery is only half of the total knee replacement.
|Hospital stay||Average Cost (* rehabilitation cost not included)|
|Arthroscopic management of meniscus tear/knee cartilage repair cruciate ligament repair etc.||1-2 days||€ 6000 – € 8000*|
|Knee osteotomy (Realignment of damaged knee components)||3-4 days||€ 10000*|
|Partial knee replacement||4 days||€ 12000*|
|Total Knee replacement||7 days||€ 18800 – € 20000*|
|Rehabilitation after knee replacement||7-14 days||€ 2200 – € 4400|
We are especially dedicated to quality management and precision during the knee surgery. Our patients we offer
Patients who are considering knee surgery are encouraged to try the most modern techniques of conservative treatment first. Knee replacement is indicated only when other methods proved to be inefficient.
We aim to ensure pain-free movement through individual, patient-oriented care and gentle surgery methods. Our top priority – the patient and his satisfaction with his new knee prosthesis. For questions and appointments, please contact the international office of the Friedrichshafen Clinic in Germany.