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Total knee replacement surgery is the process of replacing the affected knee joint with an artificial joint, created with some special metal and plastic. This artificial part is known as prosthesis. It helps alleviate the pain and bring back your “happy” phase of life. This surgery has a 95% success rate and is recommended by most doctors depending on the deformity that a person has.
Even though total knee replacement surgery can be a great treatment option, many people are quite skeptical about it. They believe in hearsay from their relatives and get terrified of it, thereby avoiding this treatment totally.
If you’re someone, who is considering total knee replacement but is terrified of the risks, then this post is for you.
In this post, we have busted this myth and stated the hard facts about total knee replacement.
Here we have stated 15 myths and facts about the total knee replacement procedure. Knowing them will help save you the much needed time to make the right decision.
FACT: It’s absolutely incorrect! Medications for relieving the pain involve consuming different types of painkillers, which only work towards a temporary relief. However, its prolonged usage increases the risk of severe side effects. Advanced arthritis cannot be cured by undergoing medications – it requires knee replacement surgery. It all depends on your present condition.
Furthermore, a lot of people believe alternative remedies such as acupressure, massages, magnetic therapy, etc. for severe arthritis and knee ache. However, there is no scientific evidence to support these remedies as of yet. Unnecessary delaying your knee replacement surgery will only make your condition more challenging and increase the likelihood of surgery complications.
FACT: Wrong! Age is not a factor to consider for total knee replacement surgery. It’s common for young people to undergo this surgery to treat their injury or disease. In fact, it’s recommended for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients to opt for knee replacement at a young age.
Furthermore, if your family has a medical history of arthritis or you might be suffering from pain in your knee joint because of an accident in the past, it’s never too early for a total knee replacement surgery. The surgery will help in relieving pain and restoring your life back to normal.
FACT: People commonly believe that knee replacement surgery is ineffective and puts patients at high risk. But these are all hearsay and factually incorrect!
This surgery is a great treatment for patients with damaged or worn-out knees who are struggling to do their daily things due to serious knee pain issues. In fact, various types of research have shown that total knee replacement surgery has a 95% success rate. Patients who have already undertaken this surgery are now fit and living a comfortable life.
FACT: The recovery rate after the total knee replacement surgery depends on the quality of the procedure and post-operative care taken by the patient after the surgery is complete.
With modern-day technology and tools available to carry out this procedure, most of the people go back to their daily routine activities within a few weeks of the surgery. You just need to follow some medication regimen and a few basic exercises specified by your doctor. And within a few days, you’ll be surprised to acknowledge your regained mobility. You’ll soon be able to walk around your home without any pain.
FACT: A lot of people have misconceptions that they won’t be able to bend their knees after the total knee replacement surgery – but it’s NOT TRUE!
This surgery helps in easing off your knee joint pain – it does not affect the overall joint movements. Most of the people having gone through this procedure were not only able to bend their knees but also sit on the floor with no external support whatsoever. The recovery will be faster and they can soon enough be able to take part in any type of activity they want.
FACT: Absolutely incorrect! If you’re facing difficulty moving around due to pain in your knee joint and the doctor has recommended the knee replacement procedure for both of your knees, then you can get these done together. There is nothing wrong with that.
Getting knee replacement surgery on both knees at once comes with many advantages:
Once you get the surgery for both the knees together, the recovery period will begin simultaneously. You can then start following the medications provided by your doctor and you’ll be pain-free within a few weeks.
FACT: Wrong! 99% of patients don’t even need a single physiotherapy session. After the knee replacement surgery, the surgeon or the provider will teach you all the basic yet important exercises that are required in your recovery. The doctor will build up your daily regimen around medications along with the exercises to be followed at home once you get discharged from the hospital.
In most cases, patients were recovered to walk freely on their own within four weeks after the treatment. There was no physiotherapy required at all!
FACT: Not true! After the knee replacement surgery, you should be able to take part in activities such as brisk walking, golf, cycling, and more in about 6 to 10 weeks. However, it’s best to avoid high-impact or contact sports such as boxing or martial arts. It’s also possible to do squats or cross legged sitting but it should be performed to a minimum extent to make way for a longer life of the implant.
Furthermore, you can always consult your doctor if you have any concerns regarding the post-surgery activities. They are the experts and will help you recover fast.
FACT: That’s not the case at all with huge advancements being done in Medical Science. The prosthetic joints, that are meant to be inserted into your body to replace the knee, are made from special metals.
The combinations used in creating these metals do not react with tissues or blood in the human body. Therefore, these prosthetic joints are the ideal solution for total knee replacement surgery. It’s compatible with the human body and can fit into the knee without causing any harm or side effects.
FACT: There are no guidelines that put age or weight criteria into account for total knee replacement surgery. The doctor recommends this surgery based on a patient’s discomfort and disorder – not age. Most of the time patients with 50 to 80 years of age undergo knee replacement surgery and are happily living their lives.
Even though orthopaedic surgeons take note of patients’ conditions individually, the ‘too old’ or ‘too young’ criteria is totally absurd (in case of some exceptions). This surgery has been performed successfully at all age groups. Elderly patients who are medically fit can get this surgery done anytime.
FACT: Presently, 90% of the implants are in good condition and well functioning even after 15 years of total knee replacement surgery.
There was a time when implants lasted only for 5 to 10 years. However, the modern advancements in the medical field carry out this procedure using modern technology-assisted replacements. In most cases, these implants can last upto 20 years without any problems. In fact, the durability of the implants used in the procedure can increase the effectiveness of the surgery up to even 30 years.
FACT: Incorrect! Conditions such as diabetes, thyroid or blood pressure are no longer considered a barrier to total knee replacement surgery.
Before the surgery, the doctor diagnoses the patient by going for a detailed pre-anaesthetic checkup. Furthermore, different echo-cardiography tests are done prior to the surgery to assess the cardiac functioning of the patient. The doctor then gives the necessary medications accordingly to control these conditions.
Even though these conditions don’t affect the outcome of the surgery, the doctor takes care of all the precautions before the surgery.
FACT: This is again a total myth! The total knee arthroplasty surgery helps in alleviating the knee pain, making activities such as driving a lot easier than before. However, doctors recommend patients to start driving after they have evaluated your post-surgical progress. In most cases, people resume driving around 4 to 6 weeks after the surgery. It’s best to check with your orthopaedic to get a nudge.
FACT: No, not always true! With the increased demand for the surgery, newer technologies and materials have made the total knee replacement costs come down in recent years.
As per the research data of more than 10 years, the standard implants are costlier compared to advanced (Gold knees) implants. The durability of implants is a criterion that should be considered before the price because advanced implants work more efficiently and get much less wear and tear than standard implants. Similarly, we don’t recommend searching about the implants online. It’s in your best interest to consult your doctor, they will be able to guide you better.
FACT: Incorrect! If your knee replacement fails or you get injured due to unforeseen circumstances, the doctor may recommend you to undergo a second surgery. This procedure is known as revision total knee replacement. This procedure is different from the previous one as it’s focussed to control the comorbidities that recurred once again (only in exceptional cases).
In revision total knee replacement surgery, the surgeon removes some or all the parts of the original prosthetic implant and replaces them with new ones. Although the goals of both the surgeries are to relieve pain and improve the functioning of your body, revision surgery is a more complex procedure. It requires extensive preoperative procedures and specialized implants in order to achieve success.
Keeping your health at priority is quite important. Therefore, you should not believe in any myth or hearsay from people who don’t have any expertise on total knee replacement. Your doctor or hospital will choose this surgery as the favorable course of action based on your condition because conditions vary from one patient to the other.
Total knee replacement surgery is a safe procedure that gets rid of the pain and limitations that you have facing in your life. With the use of advanced tools and medications, the advanced implant relieves your pain and lets you perform your daily tasks without any difficulty.
Consult your doctor about any doubts and they will help you make the right decision for yourself.
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