Total Knee Replacement (Knee Arthroplasty)

Total knee replacement procedure replaces an injured knee joint with artificial implants. Patients who receive total knee replacement experience reduced pain and restored knee function.

What You Need To Know About Total Knee Replacement

What is Total Knee Replacement?

During a total knee replacement, the surgeon replaces the damaged portions of the knee with artificial parts. These parts consist of a metal femoral component, a metal tibial component, and a plastic spacer. When put together, these parts recreate a healthy knee joint movement. A total knee replacement can help many people can increase their mobility and decrease pain.

If you are struggling with severe knee pain, the experts at Resurgens Orthopaedics can help.

Book an appointment to see a knee physician today!

Why is Total Knee Replacement Performed?

Excessive knee pain is caused by portions of the knee wearing out due to overexertion. Conditions like arthritis, or traumatic injury can also affect the knee's ability to function. As a result, basic tasks like climbing stairs or walking can become burdensome. Some people even experience pain while they are sitting or relaxing.

Knee replacement surgery augments damaged portions of the knee with artificial components. A physician may recommend total knee replacement if a patient experiences:

  • Chronic knee pain and inflammation

  • Knee pain or stiffness that interrupts everyday activities, like walking or climbing stairs

  • Knee pain while at rest

  • Progressive arthritis

  • Direct trauma to the knee joint

  • Failure to respond to other treatments

How to Prepare for Total Knee Replacement

Before getting a total knee replacement, patients will consult with a Resurgens physician to discuss how to prepare for the procedure. The physician will collect information about your medical history and current medications. Additionally, they will also order blood tests or recommend imaging. Your doctor will also examine your knee and perform some mobility tests to assess your range of motion.

Prior to a total knee replacement, the patient should adhere to these guidelines while preparing for the surgery:

  • Modify a living space on one floor to accommodate the patient during recovery.

  • Add handrails and benches to showers/baths.

  • Purchase a stable chair with firm cushions for recovery.

  • Get a toilet seat riser.

  • Obtain a walking cane and an object to grab things without having to bend over.

  • Remove potential tripping hazards, like loose rugs and electric cords.

What Happens During Total Knee Replacement?

At the beginning of the procedure, your physician will administer anesthesia. Then they will make a small incision to expose the knee joint. Damaged parts of the femur and the tibia are removed and reshaped to create a stable foundation for the artificial knee.

After the damaged tissue is removed and the bones are prepped, the surgeon will insert metal components to replace the femur and the tibia. They will then add a plastic spacer onto the tibia component so that the new femur can glide smoothly within the joint.

If the kneecap also needs reconstruction, the surgeon will replace it with a small plastic cap at this point. Once all components have been added, the knee will be tested for mobility, and the incision will be closed and bandaged.

The surgery lasts about two hours. After surgery, you will be taken into a recovery room for observation. Total knee replacement usually requires the patient to stay in the hospital for a couple of days.

Are there Risks Associated with Total Knee Replacement?

While all medical procedures include some element of risk, the complication rate of a total knee replacement is low. Some risks associated with total knee replacement are:

  • Infection

  • The formation of blood clots in the leg.

  • Implant complications.

  • Persistent pain after surgery.

  • Nerve damage

Post Total Knee Replacement & Recovery

After you are finished with the procedure and you are in recovery, it's essential to move the new joint as soon as possible. Your physician may use a continuous passive motion (CPM) machine to move the new joint gently. If you are prescribed any medication for pain management, please be careful as these can become habit-forming.

A member of the Resurgens rehabilitation team will meet with you after surgery and plan an exercise program to start your recovery process. You will continue to do these exercises while you are recovering at home. Physical rehabilitation can be used to help regain motion and reduce pain in the knee.

Your physician will give you detailed instructions to follow during your healing process. Recovery generally takes about three to six weeks, at which point you may return to most daily activities.

Visit a Resurgens Orthopaedics expert to learn more about total knee replacement surgery and other knee procedures. Book your appointment now!

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