What is Total Knee Replacement: The knee replacement is a surgical procedure in which degenerated or damaged parts of the knee joint are replaced with artificial parts. The artificial parts are cemented into place. Your new knee will consist of a metal shell on the end of the femur, a metal and plastic through on the tibia, and if needed a plastic button in the knee cap.
Is Total Knee Replacement for You: The decision whether to have total knee replacement surgery should be a co-operative one, between you, your physician, and your orthopaedic surgeon. Reasons that you may benefit from total knee replacement include: reduction of severe knee pain that limits your everyday activities, including walking, going up and down stairs, and getting in and out of chairs.
Total knee replacements are usually performed on people suffering from severe arthritic conditions. Most patients who have artificial knees are over age 55. Common causes of knee pain and loss of knee functionality are:
Osteoarthritis usually occurs after the age of 50 and often in an individual with a family history of arthritis. The cartilage that cushions the bones of the knee softens and wears away. The bones then rub against one another causing knee pain and stiffness.
Rheumatoid Arthritis is a disease in which the synovial membrane becomes thickened and inflamed, producing too much synovial fluid, which over-fills the joint space. This chronic inflammation can damage the cartilage and eventually cause cartilage loss, pain and stiffness.
Post Traumatic Arthritis can follow a serious knee injury. A knee fracture or severe tears of the knee’s ligaments may damage the articular cartilage over time, causing knee pain and limiting knee function.
The Orthopedic Evaluation:The orthopaedic evaluation consists of several components:
A medical history, in which your orthopaedic surgeon gathers information about your general health and asks you about the extent of your knee pain and your ability to function.
A physical examination to assess your knee motions, stability, and strength and overall leg alignment
X-rays to determine the extent of damage and deformity in your knee.
Occasionally blood tests, a MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) may be needed to determine the condition of the bone and soft tissues of your knee.
Your Surgery: You will most likely be admitted to the hospital on the day of your surgery. The anesthesia team with your input will determine which type of anesthesia will be best for you. The procedure itself takes about one and half hours. For example, in an arthritic knee the damaged ends of the bones and cartilage are replaced with metal and plastic surfaces that are shaped to restore knee movement and function. In an arthritic hip, the damaged ball (the upper end of the femur) is replaced by a metal ball attached to a metal stem fitted into the femur, and a plastic socket is implanted into the pelvis, replacing the damaged socket. Although hip and knee replacements are the most common, joint replacement can be performed on other joints, including the ankle, shoulder, elbow and fingers.
Your Stay in the Hospital You will most likely stay in the hospital for several days. After surgery, you will feel some pain, but medication will be given to you to make you feel as comfortable as possible. Walking and knee movements will begin immediately after your surgery. Your orthopaedic surgeon may prescribe one or more measures to prevent blood clots and decrease leg swelling. To restore movement in your knee and leg, your surgeon may use a knee support that slowly moves your knee while you are in bed. Most patients begin exercising their knee the day after surgery. A physical therapist will teach you specific exercises to strengthen your leg and restore knee movement to allow walking and other normal daily activities soon after your surgery.
What is the recovery process? In general, your orthopaedist will encourage you to use your “new” joint shortly after your operation. After total hip or knee replacement you will often stand and begin walking two or three days after surgery. Initially, you will walk with a walker, crutches or a cane.
What can I expect from an artificial knee? New knee prosthesis design can possibly provide pain relief and good function for 15 years in more than 90% of cases. If replacement provides you with pain relief and if you do not have other health problems, you should be able to carry out many normal activities of daily living. The artificial knee may allow you to return to active sports of heavy labour under your physician’s instructions. About 90% of patients with stiff knees before surgery will have better motion after a total knee replacement
Vejthani Hospital, Our arthroplasty surgeons are well experienced in total joint replacement operations. High emphasis is placed on both the operation itself as well as your recovery process, to ensure better motion of your knee.
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