When you have knee osteoarthritis, there are many treatment options you can turn to. However, if these treatment options do not provide you with relief over time, your doctor may recommend that you undergo knee replacement surgery. This surgery can reduce or eliminate pain and improve your ability to move. First, you will need to determine whether this treatment is right for you.
Signs That You Might Need Knee Replacement Surgery
Knee replacement surgery is necessary when you are experiencing severe pain. If you are experiencing moderate pain, your doctor might still recommend the surgery. You may also be experiencing swelling and inflammation that does not get better despite taking medications. Your leg might be stiff and you might experience bowing in your leg.
When Knee Replacement Is Right for You
When conservative treatments do not work, your doctor will need to perform an X-ray to find out what is wrong with your knee. Depending on the cause of your knee problems, there might be a treatment that does not require a knee replacement surgery.
Whether or not you receive knee replacement surgery is based on how much you expect to benefit from it. In some cases, your doctor might anticipate that you will only experience a minor benefit from the surgery so it may not be worth it. But for other patients, the surgery is the only option that will work.
However, for other patients, the surgery is life-changing. If you are not able to walk up stairs or perform everyday tasks because of your knee pain, you may want to consider the surgery. You may have deformities in your knee joint, weakened muscles or ligaments, and you may participate in physical therapy, but the treatments are ineffective.
How Knee Replacement Surgery Works
A knee replacement surgery involves removing part or all of the damaged knee and replacing it with an artificial joint made from metals and plastics. Because your replacement knee will be made from artificial materials, it will not experience the same breakdown as your natural knee.
If you have knee problems, you should consider losing weight. Not only will losing weight help with reducing the pain that you may experience in your knees, but losing weight will also increase the chances that your knee replacement surgery will go well. If you still need a knee replacement surgery, get in contact with an orthopedic surgeon who has experience with this type of surgery.