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Are you living with unbearable knee pain? Millions of baby boomers now have a new option to ease the pain in their knees.

It's a medical breakthrough that doctors say could get you back on your feet again, soon.

It got to the point where I couldn't even walk the dogs, said Al Anderson, 57.

He said he figured one day he'd probably need a partial knee replacement because bad knees seem to run in his family.

After about four years of pain he said, I just decided something had to be done.

Anderson contacted Doctor Ira Weintraub an orthopedic surgeon with Legacy Good Samaritan Hospital, who put in a whole new kind of partial knee replacement in Anderson's knee. It was custom fit just for his body.

His is actually the biggest prosthesis they've ever made, said Dr. Weintraub.

That's good news for Anderson, who's a 6'10, big-boned guy who grew up working hard. He was raised doing a lot of hard labor.

After a CAT scan, the plastic implants are cut to fit each patient perfectly. It's just one piece of the puzzle.

The partial knee is this portion here, said Dr. Weintraub while pointing to a model of Anderson's knee, The upper bone, the femur has a metal component. The lower bone has a metal component with a plastic tray, he said.

Dr. Weintraub said as we age, our knees start to ache and for some the pain is just unbearable.

It's especially tough if we have a job that's hard on the knees, he said.

In the baby boomers; people in their 50s and early 60s, this is the perfect answer if only part of your knee is involved, said Dr. Weintraub.

The idea of the partial knee replacement isn't new, he said, but the custom design is.

Weintraub said it's a big improvement over the generic kind.

It's like the front end of your car. If it's aligned perfectly, your tires will roll 40,000 miles. If your knee is lined up perfectly, it will go and go and go, said Dr. Weintraub.

You won't be hearing any complaints from Anderson.

I can walk the dogs now to the point where they don't want to go anymore, said Anderson with a laugh.

Weintraub said if you have a desk job, you'll be back to work in about ten days to two weeks. If you have a job that keeps you on your feet, it'll take just a bit longer.

Next month, doctor Weintraub is giving a free talk about knee surgeries called Hurting Hips and Knees: Treatment Options and Approaches. Learn about a range of treatment options available for hip and knee pain due to arthritis or injury.

Topics discussed will include traditional total hip and knee replacement surgery, minimally invasive procedures,knee replacement; medication regimes; and exercise therapies.

It's at Legacy Good Samaritan Hospital on Thursday, June 3rd from 6 to 7 p.m. Registration is required by calling (503) 335 - 3500.

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