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Knee re-alignment surgery

High Tibial Osteotomy (HTO)

Knee osteotomy can be an effective alternative to knee replacement, allowing you to keep your joint for longer

About

This procedure can redistribute weight in an an arthritic knee joint, taking pressure off the painful part of your joint. Your leg is surgically broken and then re-set.

The main benefits of this surgery is that the joint surface and bones will be saved for the time being.

However, if the knee deteriorates further, you may need to have these procedures in the future.

Need to know

  • What happens icon plus

    The procedure happens under general anaesthetic, so you'll be asleep throughout. Guided by a leg X-ray you had before the procedure, your surgeon will cut your leg bone (osteotomy) above or below the knee. The length and location of the cut is planned before surgery. This calculation also determines the kind of osteotomy you might have. The two sides of the cut bone are separated to form a wedge-shaped opening and then stabilised using plates and screws. Bone graft may be used to provide extra stability. The procedure takes around two hours.
  • How to prepare icon plus

    Your consultant will explain the procedure to you and answer any questions you may have. You'll have a 'standing long leg x-ray' on your leg before the procedure, so that your surgeon can calculate the position of the cut. Because you'll be having general anaesthetic, they'll let you know how long you should avoid eating and drinking before surgery. Like all procedures, there may be some risks and side effects involved. Your consultant will explain these to you.
  • Afterwards icon plus

    As the plates and screws in your leg keep it stable, you won't have a plaster cast on when you wake up. Your consultant will take a further X-ray of your leg, to check the alignment, and a physiotherapist will help you move as soon as possible. They will give you some straightening and flexing exercises for you to do at home. If your pain is under control and you're able to get out of bed, you should be able to leave hospital the day after the procedure. Your consultant will let you know when you'll get back to your usual routine and invite you back for a check up x-ray after six weeks. You should be fully recovered after six months.
Consultant in theatres

Our consultants

We're proud to work with leading experts across a range of medical fields, whose skills are matched by their integrity and compassion.

Our facilities

From complex surgery to straightforward procedures, we provide exceptional care across our network of hospitals, outpatient centres and specialist clinics.

Request an appointment

We're happy to help you make an appointment with one of our experienced consultants.

This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.
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