Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Myths and Facts Total Knee Replacement

Myths and Facts Total Knee Replacement

I am too young for knee replacement

Recommendations for total knee replacement are based on the patient's pain and disability. If medicines, change of lifestyle and use of walking supports is not helpful you may want to consider total knee replacement. Today's super-metals make artificial joints last longer than ever before. When performed properly, Knee Replacement can be expected to last I5 - 20 years.

I am too old for knee replacement? 

Knee Replacement is safe and successful at any age. With modern anesthesia, improved pain control measures, and the skill of experienced joint replacement surgeons, there is no point in living with the pain. Often times, a patient is actually fearful about the uncertainty of surgery. Yet many of these same patients often wish they had done it sooner

I should wait as long as possible to undergo knee replacement surgery? 

Many patients who could benefit greatly from a knee replacement wait too long. Delaying surgery lowers a patient's' quality of life not only before the operation but even for up to two years following surgery according to a study in Arthritis & Rheumatism. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative disease that continues to damage the joint and delaying surgery makes both surgeries and return to activity more difficult.

I am too overweight? 

For people with knee arthritis, it's almost impossible to lose weight when even simple walking is too painful. In fact, it's much easier to exercise and lose weight when Knees are pain-free after a Knee Replacement.

I may take too long to recover?

Patients are usually allowed to walk on the 2nd day after surgery. Discharge from the hospital is around the 7th day. Healing and recovery after Knee Replacement are generally complete in 3 months. However, delaying surgery may compromise the result of the successful operation for up to 2 years following the surgery.

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It works only for a few years. 

Modern Knee implants last for about 15 years and more in most cases. But, in some cases, poor quality bones or improperly fitted implant, an artificial knee can fail earlier, requiring a second surgery sooner than expected.
Xray after Total Knee Replacement

Total knee replacement, sounds scary?

The name total knee replacement is a misnomer.In the ‘total knee replacement’ surgery, the knee is not replaced, it is only ‘resurfaced’. The normal knee has an articular cartilage that covers the knee bones. In an arthritic knee, the cartilage covering the bone ends is destroyed leading to the bone rubbing against bone. During surgery, only the surface of the bony ends are shaved off in a sequential manner and caps are put on top damaged bone ends; one each on the femur, tibia, and patella. The artificial smooth caps rub against each other.