The knee is the largest joint within the body. If one suffers from pain in the knee it can be due to variety of factors such as arthritis, injury or disease. There are non-surgical solutions but if symptoms are severe one may need a knee replacement surgery. Many people put off knee replacement until mobility and pain become unbearable. At first, people consider lifestyle changes, exercise, use of medications and injections and alternative treatment methods such as acupuncture. If you have tried all these options, doctor may recommend knee replacement. Here are few things you need to know about knee replacement surgery.

What is Knee Replacement?

Knee Replacement
Mahkota Medical Centre

Knee replacement surgery involves replacing damaged, diseases or worn bone and cartilage in knee joint with artificial joint. Depending on damaged bone, patient may require total or partial knee replacement. Total knee replacement is most common and involves replacement of both sides knee joint. Whereas, in partial knee replacement a small incision is made and less bone is removed.

Why is knee replacement surgery required?

Also known as arthroplasty, Knee replacement surgery is offered when knee joint is damaged or worn and you have following symptoms:

  • Swelling and stiffness in knee joint that reduces mobility and everyday tasks
  • Severe knee pain that interferes quality of life and sleep
  • Cannot work or have normal social life

Factors affecting Knee replacement surgery cost in India

There are various factors which can affect treatment cost such as:

  • Hospital patient is opting for
  • Room – Deluxe, Standard, super Deluxe room for the number of nights
  • ICU and Operating Room
  • Physiotherapy session
  • Fee for team of the doctors
  • Medicines
  • Treatment options: surgery, implant used and single or both knee

What conditions require knee replacement surgery?

Knee replacement may require in various situations such as osteoporosis is the number one cause of knee replacement. Other conditions that cause knee damage include hemophilia, rheumatoid arthritis, gout and knee injury.

Procedure
Before Procedure

Before the surgery, a complete physical examination and diagnostic tests will be done. Patient is advised to stop smoking prior to surgical procedure and inform the doctor about any drug allergy.

During Procedure

The surgery lasts for 2-3 hours and performed under general anesthesia. An incision is made in the knee area and surgeon will replace the damaged surfaces of knee joint with the prosthesis. It is made up of metal and plastic. After this, incision will be closed with stitches and drain may be placed in the incision to remove fluid.

After Procedure

After the surgery, patient will be kept in recovery room for few hours. The hospital stay is of 4-6 days and recovery depends on the age and overall health. Patient will be encouraged to stand within 12-24 hours after operations and to walk with crutches. Patient will feel discomfort while walking and exercising, and legs and feet may be swollen. Physiotherapy is required for first few weeks.

What are the benefits of knee replacement?

The main benefits of knee replacement surgery is reduced or no knee pain and being able to move around so that patient can enjoy normal daily activities.

What are the risks?
Risks are rare but can include:

  • Infection of the wound
  • Stiffness of the knee
  • Unexpected bleeding into the knee joint
  • Blood clots or Deep Vein Thrombosis
  • Persistent pain in the knee
  • Deep infection of the joint replacement
  • Adverse reaction to anesthesia

Success rates
A knee replacement is an effective treatment for worn or diseased knees. People who undergo this surgery are able to perform daily activities more comfortably. Its success rate is close to 100% success rate.

Alternatives to knee replacement
There are many non-surgical treatment options that can improve mobility or relieve knee pain:

  • Walking stick can make walking easy
  • Painkillers to control the pain
  • Moderate exercise to reduce stiffness in knee
  • Steroid injections can reduce pain and stiffness

Alternative surgical treatment includes:

  • Microfracture: Small holes are made in the bone to allow cells beneath to come to the
  • surface. It is a good option if you have small area of damaged cartilage.
  • Mosaicplasty – Damaged area is repaired with plugs of hard cartilage and underlying bone from another part of the knee.
  • Osteotomy: The shin bone is cut and realigned. This procedure can postpone the knee replacement.
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