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J Bone Joint Surg Br. 2010 Apr;92(4):508-12. doi: 10.1302/0301-620X.92B4.22659.

Survival and functional outcome after revision of a unicompartmental to a total knee replacement: the New Zealand National Joint Registry.

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University of Otago, Christchurch,New Zealand.


We reviewed the rate of revision of unicompartmental knee replacements (UKR) from the New Zealand Joint Registry between 1999 and 2008. There were 4284 UKRs, of which 236 required revision, 205 to a total knee replacement (U2T) and 31 to a further unicompartmental knee replacement (U2U). We used these data to establish whether the survival and functional outcome for revised UKRs were comparable with those of primary total knee replacement (TKR). The rate of revision for the U2T cohort was four times higher than that for a primary TKR (1.97 vs 0.48; p < 0.05). The mean Oxford Knee Score was also significantly worse in the U2T group than that of the primary TKR group (30.02 vs 37.16; p < 0.01). The rate of revision for conversion of a failed UKR to a further UKR (U2U cohort) was 13 times higher than that for a primary TKR. The poor outcome of a UKR converted to a primary TKR compared with a primary TKR should contra-indicate the use of a UKR as a more conservative procedure in the younger patient.

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