Knee Replacement Surgery

In this comprehensive guide, we discuss the details of knee replacement surgery, covering the different types, indications, how to prepare, the procedure, recovery, and more. Whether you’re considering this procedure or seeking to enhance your knowledge, this article will provide valuable insights.

If you’re in Granville or Coshocton, Ohio, and seeking expert medical guidance, consider consulting Orthopedic Specialists & Sports Medicine. Our skilled knee replacement surgeons offer personalized treatments to help you on your road to recovery.

What is Knee Replacement Surgery?

Knee replacement surgery is a procedure that uses several surgical techniques to replace the surfaces of the knee joint. Knee replacements are also known as knee arthroplasty.

Some of the primary goals of knee replacement surgery are to relieve pain and improve the patient’s quality of life.

What Are the Different Types of Knee Surgery?

There are four main types of knee replacement surgery:

  1. Total knee replacement surgery
  2. Unicompartmental or partial knee replacement surgery
  3. Kneecap replacement surgery
  4. Revision knee replacement surgery

How Do I Know If I Need Surgery?

If you have knee arthritis or suffered a knee injury, there may be many different types of treatments available to treat your condition. However, you may need to see a knee replacement surgeon in Newark, OH, and the surrounding area for the following reasons:

  • Experiencing intense knee pain or stiffness that limits daily tasks like walking, climbing stairs, or sitting down and standing up. This discomfort may restrict mobility, requiring the use of assistive devices like canes or walkers.
  • Enduring moderate to severe knee pain even during periods of rest.
  • Suffering from persistent knee inflammation and swelling that persists despite rest or medication.
  • Noticing a deformity in the knee, such as inward or outward bowing.
  • Symptoms persist despite treatments such as anti-inflammatory medications, cortisone injections, lubricating injections, physical therapy, or other surgeries.

Can Both Knees Be Replaced at the Same Time?

Yes, it is possible to replace both knees at the same time. To qualify, you must be healthy, under 75 years old, and not suffer from cardiopulmonary disease.

How to Prepare for Knee Surgery

There are several recommended steps you will need to make in preparing for knee surgery. Preparation may involve the following:

  1. Medical Evaluation: A complete physical examination with a primary care doctor to ensure overall health and fitness for surgery.
  2. Diagnostic Tests: Blood tests, urine samples, electrocardiograms, and other tests to assess baseline health and identify any potential risks.
  3. Medication Adjustments: Discussion with the orthopedic knee surgeon regarding medications to be stopped or continued before surgery.
  4. Dental Evaluation: Completion of major dental procedures to minimize the risk of infection post-surgery.
  5. Social and Home Planning: Arrangements for assistance with daily activities during the recovery period and modifications to the home environment to ensure safety and comfort.
Surgeon in Newark, Ohio, preparing for a knee replacement surgery with patient.

The Knee Replacement Procedure

A knee replacement procedure involves the following four steps:

  1. The bone is prepared: Your surgeon will begin the procedure by removing the damaged cartilage surfaces from the ends of the bone.
  2. Knee implants are inserted: Your surgeon will then fix the knee prosthesis in place. Prosthetic implants may be cemented or press-fit onto the bone. These implants recreate the joint surfaces, allowing smooth movement in your knee joint.
  3. Patella resurfacing: In some cases, your surgeon will resurface the kneecap with a plastic button.
  4. A spacer is inserted: If you are undergoing total knee replacement, a medical-grade plastic spacer will be inserted between replacement components to allow smooth movements.

When the surgery is over, you will be moved to a recovery room until the anesthesia wears off. You will then be taken to your hospital room or discharged.

How Long Does Knee Replacement Surgery Take?

Knee replacement surgery usually takes between 1 and 2 hours.

The Benefits of Knee Replacement Surgery

Knee replacement surgery is an effective way to relieve knee pain and improve function. Many patients can return to activities that they found difficult before surgery.

Risks of Knee Replacement Surgery

Knee replacement surgery comes with a few risks associated with surgical procedures. The risks include the following:

  • Infection
  • Blood clots
  • Nerve damage
  • Prosthesis failure

Recovery and Recuperation

Recovery and recuperation following knee replacement surgery are crucial for achieving optimal outcomes. Particularly following your orthopedic surgeon’s instructions during the first few weeks can significantly influence the success of your surgery and even help speed up your knee replacement surgery recovery time. This could include the following instructions:

Taking Care of Your Wound

Wound care is an important part of your recovery. You’ll likely have stitches, staples, or a suture beneath your skin on the front of your knee, which will be removed several weeks after surgery. To prevent infection, avoid soaking the wound until it has thoroughly sealed and dried. You may continue to bandage the wound to prevent irritation from clothing or support stockings.

Maintaining a balanced diet is essential for aiding wound healing and restoring muscle strength. This can be a challenge because you may initially lose your appetite. Consider incorporating an iron supplement and ensuring adequate fluid intake to support the recovery process.

Get Regular Exercise

Engaging in regular exercise is another important aspect of recovery, particularly during the first few weeks post-surgery. Even though you might feel some discomfort with activity or at night, you should continue with the exercises given to you. Within 3 to 6 weeks following the procedure, you should be able to resume most normal activities of daily living.

Your activity program should include a graduated walking program, initially indoors and later progressing outdoors, to gradually increase mobility. Additionally, resume other household activities like sitting, standing, and climbing stairs.

Performing specific exercises multiple times a day is recommended to restore movement and strengthen your knee. While you can perform these exercises independently, the assistance of a physical therapist at home or in a therapy center during the initial weeks post-surgery can be beneficial.

Returning to Drive

You may be able to return to driving when you can comfortably enter and sit in the car and when you can safely brake and accelerate. Most individuals can resume driving approximately 4 to 6 weeks after surgery.

Schedule Your Appointment Today

If you’re experiencing persistent knee pain or considering knee replacement surgery, don’t hesitate to seek expert medical advice. Schedule an appointment with a knee replacement surgeon in Granville or Coshocton, Ohio, today!

Our knee specialists at Orthopedic Surgeons & Sports Medicine will provide you with personalized treatment options tailored to your needs. Contact us now!

Medically reviewed by Alex Tancevski, MD