Knee replacement surgery plays a vital role in relieving pain and restoring function in significantly damaged joints. Each year, orthopedic surgeons perform roughly 700,000 knee replacement surgeries, and over 98% of those surgeries are free of serious complications.
Orthopedic surgeon Joel Hurt, MD, has extensive experience performing knee replacement surgeries. Whether you have advanced arthritis, or have sustained significant joint damage due to a sports injury, knee replacement surgery can help restore a pain-free life. Keep reading to learn more about the safety and efficacy of knee replacement.
Knee replacement surgery overview
Advanced knee damage can cause significant pain and reduced mobility. Surgery may be recommended when damage to the knee is extensive and nonsurgical treatments are ineffective.
The goal of knee replacement surgery is to replace the damaged parts of the knee joint to restore function and alleviate pain. This is done using metal and plastic parts. Recovery from a full knee replacement can take 8 to 12 weeks on average, but varies greatly from person to person. Physical therapy is an important part of the recovery process. Therapeutic exercises reduce swelling, improve range of motion, and build strength.
Effectiveness of knee replacement surgery
Knee replacement surgery can be life-changing. Most people who undergo total knee replacement surgery experience a significant improvement in mobility and ability to perform daily activities, as well as a major reduction in pain.
Typical knee replacements can last more than 20 years on average. Keep in mind that a high activity level can speed wear-and-tear on the artificial joint. Many orthopedic surgeons recommend against high-impact physical activities after knee replacement surgery.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t lead an active lifestyle but it’s important to adjust your expectations. Many people with knee replacements enjoy biking, light hiking, and other low-impact sports.
Maintaining a normal weight is also important to the longevity of your knee replacement.
Knee replacement safety
When performed by an experienced orthopedic surgeon, knee replacement surgery is considered safe. Fewer than 2% of complications occur. Dr. Hurt provides guidance throughout the recovery process and does everything possible to minimize the risk of complications.
Potential complications of knee replacement surgery
As with any procedure, there is a risk for complications. The following are possible complications of knee replacement surgery:
- Blood clots
- Continued pain
- Mechanical failure
The replaced knee joint may loosen or become unstable. Fortunately, these complications are rare.
Your surgeon will discuss the benefits and risks of knee replacement surgery with you in-depth. This is also an opportunity to address any concerns you may have.
Knee replacement surgery can help you reclaim your independence and get back to living a pain-free life. If you’re struggling with knee pain and considering knee replacement surgery, schedule a consultation with Dr. Hurt. Call or book online today.