Knee replacement surgery (arthroplasty) is a routine operation to replace damaged, worn or diseased knee joints with artificial ones. Most surgery is performed on people between 60 and 80 years but adults of any age can have a knee replacement.
Knee osteoarthritis is one of the primary reasons that people have knee replacement surgery. This condition can have a huge impact on your life, making it difficult to walk, climb stairs, or even sit or lie down without pain. In the first instance, doctors will recommend a range of non-invasive treatments to help you manage the symptoms.
However, if these don’t work or your quality of life is severely impacted by pain, your doctor may recommend knee replacement surgery.
Other conditions that cause irreparable knee damage include:
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Unusual bone growth
- Death of bone in the knee joint as a result of blood supply problems
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How quickly will I be able to go home after surgery?
You can normally go home three to five days after your operation. You will need crutches and your physiotherapist will recommend exercises to strengthen your knee.
How can I prepare for my operation?
It is a good idea to stay as active as you can as strengthening the muscles around your knee will aid your recovery. Gentle exercise is best – swimming and walking. Your physiotherapist will also suggest some exercises to help you prepare for surgery.
What is arthroscopic washout?
Sometimes you may be offered alternatives to surgery. In days gone by an arthroscopic washout and debridement was performed, but it did not give lasting results. Now, arthrscopic surgery is only used in knee arthritis to remove loose bodies that are troublesome or if the knee is locking due to a cartilage tear.
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