Total Knee Replacement – Symptoms
Some of the common symptoms and indicators for the need of a knee replacement surgery are:
- Severe pain in the knee
- Trouble climbing up the staircase
- Difficulty walking
- Difficulty when sitting in or getting out of chairs
- Knee pain during or after exercise
- Stiffness in the knee after sitting in a seat for sometime
- Decrease in knee motion and range
- Swelling and stiffness in knee
- Knee pain during rainy weather
Total Knee Replacement – Causes
A Total Knee Replacement Surgery is usually required when the patient has a severely damaged or diseased knee, most commonly caused by Osteoarthritis, or an injury.
Total Knee Replacement – Diagnosis
The doctor may diagnose the need for a knee replacement surgery based on:
- History of pain and injury provided by the patient
- Physical examination of the knee
- Physical Tests
Total Knee Replacement – Treatment
Total Knee Replacement surgery involves cutting-off of the damaged cartilage and bone from the thigh bone, knee cap, and shin bone. This is then replaced with an artificial joint made up of high grade plastics, metal alloys, and polymers.
Whether or not a knee replacement surgery is the right option for you is determined by the doctor based on the extent of damage, strength and stability of the knee and its range of motion.
The doctor establishes a treatment plan based on the patient’s age, weight, level of activity, overall health, and the shape & size of the knee.
Total Knee Replacement – Risks & Complications
Total Knee Replacement surgery is minimally invasive and thereby, a low risk surgery. However, some of the associated risks and complications of a total knee replacement surgery include:
- Nerve Damage
- Blood clot in leg veins
- Blood clot in lungs
- Heart Attack
- Failure of the artificial joint with regular stressors and wearing out
If the patient experiences fever, chills, drainage from the site of surgery, and redness/swelling/pain in the knee that is on a constant rise, schedule an appointment with the doctor immediately. These symptoms could be indicators of a possible infection.
Total Knee Replacement – Pre Op Care
- The doctor may ask you to discontinue certain medications before undergoing the surgery
- You may have to stop intake of any food or water few hours before the surgery
- Make arrangements for someone to take care of you and help you out immediately after the surgery
- Make appropriate arrangements so that the need to climb stairs immediately after the surgery is eliminated or significantly reduced
- Arrange for a comfortable and secure chair for the patient to sit on while showering
- Get rid of all loose rugs and fittings that someone may trip on, from the living space
Total Knee Replacement – Post Op Care
if the patient experiences fever, chills, drainage from the site of surgery, and increasing redness/swelling/pain in the knee, get in touch with the doctor immediately.
Apart from this, it is important to maintain a regular exercise routine once fully recovered, to keep your joints functioning, flexible and strong.