Arthritis is a term used to describe swelling or inflammation and deterioration in the joints. In the knee, the arthritis is a result from the damage to the gliding surface that is called by the name articular cartilage. Due to the damage caused, you may be not able to ordinary activities such climbing the stairs and walking. The damage to the knee joint cartilage and the underlying bone can result in deformity. The pain that is commonly in the knee may radiate till the thigh, calf or back of the knee. After long periods of immobility, the pain in the knee can worsen. Most of the knees wear out on the inside and then to the outside and kneecap
What is total knee replacement surgery?
A total knee replacement surgery is performed to remove the arthritic bone and the cartilage that is damaged from the knee joint. The damaged cartilage is then replaced with a metal and plastic covering that stimulates the natural cartilage. This helps in creating a smoothly functioning joint that does not pain or hurt. In this surgery, the natural muscles and tendons are left in the natural place so that the joints can function smoothly.
Who is the right candidate for knee replacement surgery?
People who suffer from painful knee deformities, advanced symptoms of arthritis are the right candidates for knee replacement surgery.
People who are eligible for this surgery have:
- Moderate to severe arthritis in the knee that is confirmed by the doctor with medical imaging
- Severe knee pain that interferes with daily activities and is not responding to appropriate non surgical treatments such as medications, physical therapy, weight loss, exercise, steroid injections
- Ideal candidates for knee replacement will also have the following
- Knee deformity such as knock knees, bow legs that has been exacerbated by knee joint degeneration
- Swelling and inflammation of the knee that is chronic and cannot be controlled with medication or rest
- Difficulty in walking, climbing the staircase and
- Moderate to severe pain even when they are resting and that is affecting sleep
Knee replacement surgery can be indicated and performed by an orthopedic surgeon. The surgery helps people who suffer from severe pain that is caused by the degeneration of the cartilage in the knee find total knee replacement surgery. Total knee replacement surgery is highly beneficial and helps bring relief to patients who have severe pain caused by the degeneration of the cartilage in the knee. It also helps people who have serious knee injuries and advanced arthritis. Almost 90 percent of all total knee replacement surgeries that are performed are successful. It also depends on the patient’s total level of activity.
What are the various benefits of the surgery?
Knee pain and conditions can limit the daily activities of a patient due to the knee pain and limited mobility. Knee replacement surgery is highly beneficial for patients as it helps them get back to their normal life. But then it is all dependent on the patient’s overall health and the underlying condition.
Do I need physical therapy after the surgery?
Physical therapy is prescribed to the patient after they get discharged from the hospital and will start within a week of the surgery. The physical therapy will include knee strengthening exercises, various knee exercises to encourage range of motion and to reduce the scar tissue. The therapy will help in building strength and flexibility where the patient can eventually walk unaided.
What is the timeline for the surgery recovery?
After the surgery, most of the patients are able to resume their day to day activities within 6 to 7 weeks and within the timeframe of 3 to 5 weeks are able to drive also. But it may take a whole year to fully recover from the surgery and gain the complete benefit from the surgery.