Having Knee Problems? You May Need Total Joint Replacement Surgery

If you are having constant knee problems, one thing the doctor may suggest is total joint replacement surgery. Knee problems can happen from injury, arthritis, and more. The doctor may try other treatments first, such as physical therapy, taking medications, wearing a brace, etc. If these do not work this type of surgery will be suggested. 

Total Joint Replacement

With a total joint replacement, the doctor removes the damaged joint and then replaces it with a prosthesis made of ceramic, plastic, or metal. The prosthesis replicates your joint to help you move your knee like normal once you recover. 

Before the surgery, the doctor will do a medical history to ensure you are in good health. They may contact your primary care doctor for this information. You will also meet with an anesthesiologist before your surgery. This doctor will ask you if you have ever had surgery before and how you felt after. For example, you may have been nauseous the first time. If so, the doctor can add some medication to the anesthesia to help with this. 

The surgery will take a few hours in most cases and may be an outpatient surgery or you may have to stay a night in the hospital. 

Recovering from Total Joint Replacement

After the surgery, your doctor will set you up with a physical therapist. This therapist may visit you in the hospital before you go home. You will be in pain for a few weeks, and it may take months until your knee gets back to normal again.

You will have to keep all weight off your knee so the doctor will have you use crutches, a walker, etc. until you can put weight on your knee again. You will also wear a knee brace for a few weeks after the surgery to prevent your knee from moving. 

The physical therapist is an important part of recovery as they can teach you exercises to strengthen your knee muscles to help you recover faster. This will strengthen the knee joint and help you move your knee better. You will likely have to see a physical therapist for a few weeks while you are recovering. This may be once a week or more. The doctor will determine how long this should be. The therapist will also teach you exercises you should do at home on your own. 

Talk with your doctor to learn much more about total joint replacement surgery.