Knee replacement means you’ve chosen to replace your joint with an artificial one. It’s only an option when all other treatments are no longer effective. The pain results from the absence of damaged cartilage that cushions the bones of the knee. When a damaged knee impacts everything you do – even everyday activities – you may have to consider knee replacement in Louisiana.
The surgery itself involves replacing some of the damaged bone and cartilage in the joint with a smooth gliding surface made of metal and plastic. Following are 9 additional things you need to know if you are considering this surgery.
1. Types of knee replacement in Louisiana: Knee replacements can be either partial or total. Patients can get opt for partial replacement when only one part of the knee’s cartilage is damaged. That said, most replacements are total because arthritis tends to affect the entire knee.
Types of knee replacement in Louisiana: When it comes to picking a surgeon, research shows that the more of these surgeries the surgeon performs, the better the outcomes. Once you’ve chosen your doctor, the best way to prepare is to follow the doctor’s orders to optimize your health.
3. How long does the knee replacement surgery take? While the surgery itself can be accomplished in between 30 to 60 minutes, with prep time and anesthesia, the patient’s time comes out closer to two hours.
4. Managing pain after knee replacement surgery: The severity of post-surgical pain depends upon the individual. The best way to manage it is to prevent it from starting. Typically, opioid pain medication is used to ease the immediate, and more severe, post-operative pain. But patients are encouraged to switch to non-narcotic medication as soon as possible.
5. Do I have to be hospitalized for knee replacement in Louisiana? Most total replacements require one to two nights in the hospital; however, some surgeons may choose to do it as an outpatient procedure, depending on their training and the hospital protocols.
6. How long is the recovery following knee replacement in Louisiana? The typical recovery as a year-long process that occurs in three phases:
• First six weeks: Heal, reduce swelling, and regain movement.
• Next three to five months: Build endurance and muscle strength through regular-life activity and exercise.
• Final six months: Continue to gain strength and mobility.
7. What is involved with the long-term recovery process? Depending on how you feel, you should be able to return to all normal activities within six to 12 months, barring infection in the incision or other complications. The long-term outcome depends on the patient’s motivation and ability to continue to strengthen the knee and muscles around it for the first year after surgery.
8. What are the best case scenario results? Knee replacement is one of the most satisfying surgeries in orthopedics. The best case scenario involves a functional joint that remains pain-free for upwards of 30 years.
9. How long before you know if it was a success? Most patients will know that their surgery was a success in the first two to three months following surgery. If a patient feels increasing pain and/or decreasing function at least six months after surgery, the initial surgeon should be seen for evaluation.
Knee replacement surgery has become increasingly popular due to the advancements in technology. If you are experiencing knee pain and would like to know if you might be a candidate for knee replacement in Louisiana, call our office today to schedule a consultation.