Your knee is hurt by arthritis
or an injury?
It’s difficult for you to perform activities such as walking or climbing a ladder? You probably feel pain while sitting or lying down
You have tried non-surgical treatment such as medications and walking aids but they no longer help. Knee replacement
is the procedure you should consider, an articulation replacement
is the safest surgical procedure and it’ll relieve your pain problems to get back on track and to do your activities with the freedom of movement that you deserve.
What is a knee replacement surgery?
The replacement of knee that is also known as arthroplasty, could be called with greater precision “put new surface to the knee “. Is a surgical procedure that can help relieve pain and return the function in the articulation of a severely damaged knee .
The goal of a knee replacement is to repair the parts of the knee joint that have been damaged and relieve the pain that other treatments can’t. The metal and plastic parts are used to cover the end of the bones that makes the knee joint along with the kneecap. The procedure consist in cutting the damaged bone and cartilage of your femur, shin and kneecap and replacing it with an artificial joint (prosthesis) made of metal alloys, high quality plastics and polymers.
Basic steps for the knee replacement procedure:
- Prepare the bone : Damaged cartilage surfaces at the ends of the femur and tibia are removed along with a small amount of underlying bone.
- Place the metal implants: The cartilage and bone removed are replaced with metal components that recreate the surface of the joint. These metal parts can be cemented or “press fit” into the bone
- Resurfaced the kneecap : The lower surface with a plastic button. Some surgeons don’t resurface the kneecap, depending on the case.
- Insert a spacer: A medical-grade plastic spacer is inserted between the metal components to create a smooth sliding surface.
This surgery should only be considered if you have severe arthritis or a serious knee injury
. If this is not the case you may consider a partial knee replacement
surgery or an arthroscopy surgery. You can also try other non-surgical treatments to relieve your knee pain. An orthopedic surgeon evaluates the range of motion, stability and strength of your knee to determine if a knee replacement is right for you.
The type of prosthesis for your knee replacement is chosen by your age, size, weight , shape of the knee , your level of activity and general health.
In which case a knee replacement surgery is recommended?
There are several reasons why your doctor would recommend knee replacement surgery
People who benefit from knee replacement surgery usually have:
- Pain or stiffness in the knee which limits you, and makes it hard for you to walk, sit and stand on chair or climb stairs. It’s difficult to walk for a while, you feel a significant pain and you must use a cane or a walker.
- Moderate or severe pain while resting or sleeping
- Swelling or inflammation of the knee that does not improve with rest or with medication
- Deformity of the knee ( knee arched inside or out)
- Failure to improve with other medical treatments such as anti-inflammatory drugs, cortisone injections, lubricant injections, physical therapy or other surgeries.
How long does a full knee replacement surgery takes?
The surgery itself lasts approximately 1 to 2 hours. Your orthopedic surgeon will remove the damaged cartilage and bone, and then place the new metal and plastic implants to restore the alignment and function of your knee .
Possible risks of knee replacement surgery?
The risk rate is low after a knee replacement surgery. Severe complications such as an infection in the knee joint occur in less than 2% of patients. Major medical complications such as a heart attack or stroke occur less frequently. Having chronic diseases can increase the percentage of complications and can prolong or limit the total recovery.
- Infections: They can occur in the wound or in the deep area of the prosthesis. They can occur years after the surgery, minor infections are usually treated with antibiotics, major or more surgeries may require surgery or removal of the prosthesis.
- Blood clots in the leg vein or lungs: It is one of the most common risks, your surgeon will have a prevention program.
- Heart attack
- Nerve damage
How long to recover from knee replacement?
Everyone recovers a little differently after a complete knee replacement, it usually takes about 12 weeks to complete the rehabilitation process and 6 months to a year to return to full strength. The new joint after surgery a physiotherapist will meet with you shortly after your surgery and plan an exercise program for you.