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29th March 2021

Living my active life

Daniela Knecht had been suffering knee pain for years when she went looking for a way to continue living her full and active life. The first day after her surgery, she was up and about and feeling fantastic.

“You know how it is when you grow up and everyone tells you that you are like your grandmother?” says Daniela. “Well, in my case it was that I had the same bowlegs.”

More of Daniela’s body weight was passing through the inside of the knee, which was causing damage inside the joint. Despite having previous operations, the first of which was in her 20s, Daniela needed a solution to enable her to continue to enjoy her active hobbies.

“I am not ready for a new joint replacement just yet, I am too young,” Daniela tells This Is MedTech. “But I am active: I play tennis, I ski, I want to keep living that active life.” So she approached an orthopaedic surgeon to find her answer.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans revealed that Daniela had low-grade deformity within the knee and that the cartilage had deteriorated on the inner edge of the head of the femur (thigh bone). Luckily for Daniela, the scans showed that the meniscus, another shock-absorbing cartilage inside the knee joint, was intact, as were the biomechanical properties of the knee.

As a result, Daniela and her surgeon decided to proceed with surgery to correct the axis of the knee using a knee osteotomy system. During an osteotomy, surgeons add or remove a small section of bone either above or below the knee joint in order to realign the knee so that the body weight is no longer focused on the damaged part of the joint.

“The first day I was back up on crutches, I was walking around and it felt fantastic. For the first time in years I was without pain, even though I had just come out of surgery,” she recalls. “I am now, six months later, doing my right knee and I can say I am really looking forward to it. I know I will be a joint replacement candidate one time in my life but not in the next 10–15 years,” Daniela smiles.