The medical name for a knee replacement is arthroplasty. About 1 in 10 Americans will need a knee replacement by the time they’re 80 years old. If you’re one of them, you may be wondering how you know it’s time.
The experts at Orthocenter understand that undergoing knee replacement can be a big decision. We’re happy to help you understand the benefits and challenges of the surgery, as well as guide you through making the choice to get a new knee.
Take a moment as we describe some of the reasons you might decide you’re ready for surgery. Of course, it’s important for you to consult with one of our experts one-on-one as you work through the decision-making process.
1. You have a degenerative condition, and it has worsened
The most common reason that people need arthroscopy is because they have osteoarthritis, and it has worsened to leaving them in near-constant pain. Other conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, can do so much damage that a replacement is necessary.
A traumatic injury can also make a knee replacement necessary.
2. Pain control no longer works
Most of the conditions that lead to an eventual joint replacement worsen slowly, over time. That’s one reason you may have trouble deciding when it’s the right time to have surgery.
In the beginning, you may be able to control your pain with medications, icing, and other methods. When those things stop working, it may time to discuss surgery with your doctor.
3. Daily activities are difficult
We don’t mean your daily run is difficult. Rather, when you have trouble stepping into and out of the bathtub because your knee hurts, or you struggle to climb the stairs to go to bed at night, you may need to begin thinking about arthroscopy.
If knee pain has you using a cane or walker to manage your normal routine, you should talk to your doctor.
4. It hurts all the time
Whether you’re resting in bed, relaxing in your favorite chair, or brushing your teeth, your knee hurts. When the pain is constant, a knee replacement could change your life for the better.
5. You’ve tried lots of other things
Surgical intervention is often the last line of treatment. So if you’ve tried medications, injections, physical therapy, icing, and other approaches but your condition has progressively worsened, surgery may be your best option.
A change for the better
There are always risks associated with surgery, and lots of factors need to be considered before you and your doctor make a final decision, but very often, arthroplasty results in a better life. Once you recover, you have less pain, you can be more active, and the relief lasts for a long time.
If you’re ready to learn more about arthroplasty and find out what an expert thinks of your situation, schedule an appointment at Orthocenter. Our staff answers your questions in the context of your overall health and with your goals in mind.
We have three convenient offices in Red Bank, Morganville and Holmdel, New Jersey. Schedule your appointment at the one that works best for you.