Knee Replacement Surgery
What is arthritis?
Arthritis is a group of conditions where there is progressive damage to one or more joints. The most common type of arthritis is osteoarthritis, where there is progressive wear and tear of a joint. Some other types of arthritis are associated with inflammation of the joints. Arthritis eventually wears away the normal cartilage covering the surface of the joint and the bone underneath becomes damaged. This causes pain and stiffness in the joint.
What are the benefits of surgery?
If your knee replacement is successful, you should have less pain and be able to walk more easily.
Are there any alternatives to a total knee replacement?
Simple painkillers such as paracetamol and anti-inflammatory painkillers such as ibuprofen can help control the pain. Supplements to your diet may also help relieve your symptoms. You should check with your doctor before you take supplements.
Using a walking stick can make walking easier. Wearing an elasticated support on your knee can help it feel stronger. Regular moderate exercise can help to reduce stiffness in your knee. A steroid injection into your knee joint can sometimes reduce pain and stiffness. All of these measures become less effective as your arthritis gets worse.
What does the operation involve?
A variety of anaesthetic techniques are possible. The operation usually takes between an hour and an hour and a half.
Your surgeon will make a cut on the front of your knee and remove the damaged joint surfaces. They will replace these with an artificial knee joint made of metal, plastic, ceramic, or a combination of these materials.
How soon will I recover?
You should be able to go home after one day but you will need to use crutches or walking sticks for a few weeks.
Most people make a good recovery, have less pain and can move about better. An artificial knee never feels quite the same as a normal knee. Kneeling down is not recommended and is usually uncomfortable.
to find out more about the knee procedures we offer.