Total knee replacement

Total knee replacement surgery is a commonly performed procedure at Sterling Hospitals in Ahmedabad, aimed at improving the quality of life for patients suffering from severe knee joint pain and dysfunction. Here, we will discuss the indications for this procedure, what to expect during the surgical procedure, and the recovery process. 

Indications for Total Knee Replacement Surgery: 

  • Osteoarthritis: This is the most common indication for total knee replacement surgery. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint condition that causes the cartilage in the knee joint to wear away, leading to pain, stiffness, and limited mobility. 
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis: Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition that can affect multiple joints in the body, including the knees. It causes inflammation, pain, and joint deformities, and may require total knee replacement surgery to alleviate symptoms and improve joint function. 
  • Post-Traumatic Arthritis: Joint damage resulting from a previous knee injury, such as a fracture or ligament tear, can lead to post-traumatic arthritis. If conservative treatments fail to provide relief, total knee replacement surgery may be recommended. 
  • Other Conditions: Total knee replacement surgery may also be considered for patients with other conditions such as avascular necrosis, bone tumors, or deformities that affect the knee joint and significantly impact daily activities and quality of life. 

Procedure of Total Knee Replacement Surgery: 

  • Pre-operative Evaluation: Before the surgery, the patient's medical history, including any medications they are taking, will be reviewed. Blood tests, X-rays, and an ECG may be performed to assess the patient's overall health and to plan the surgical approach. 
  • Anesthesia: The patient will be administered anesthesia to ensure comfort during the procedure. This may be general anesthesia, which puts the patient to sleep, or regional anesthesia, which numbs the lower half of the body. 
  • Surgical Incision: The surgeon will make an incision over the knee joint to gain access to the damaged joint surfaces. The size and location of the incision may vary depending on the surgeon's preference and the patient's anatomy. 
  • Joint Preparation: The damaged cartilage and bone from the knee joint will be carefully removed using specialized surgical instruments. The surfaces of the thighbone, shinbone, and kneecap will be shaped to accommodate the artificial implant. 
  • Implant Placement: The artificial implant, also known as a prosthesis, will be securely attached to the prepared bone surfaces using bone cement or press-fit technique. The type of implant used will depend on factors such as the patient's age, activity level, and the surgeon's preference. 
  • Wound Closure: Once the implant is in place, the surgeon will close the incision with sutures or staples. A sterile dressing will be applied to protect the wound. 

Recovery after Total Knee Replacement Surgery: 

  • Hospital Stay: The patient will typically stay in the hospital for two to three days after the surgery, although this may vary depending on the patient's condition and the surgeon's recommendation. During the hospital stay, the patient will receive pain-relieving medications and undergo physical therapy to start regaining knee joint function. 
  • Rehabilitation: After being discharged from the hospital, the patient will continue with a rehabilitation program that includes regular exercises to improve strength, flexibility, and mobility of the knee joint. Physical therapy sessions may be scheduled for several weeks or months to help the patient gradually return to their normal activities. 
  • Pain Management: Pain management will be an important aspect of the recovery process. The surgeon may prescribe pain medications, and the patient should follow the recommended dosage and schedule. Using ice packs, elevating the leg, and practicing relaxation.