Total Knee Replacement — Frequently Asked Questions

A total knee replacement is a surgical technique that involves cutting away the damaged bone and cartilage in the knee joint. It will then be replaced by metal and high-grade plastic implants to address various knee problems, such as osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis.

Total knee replacement is a significantly effective treatment option to reduce knee problem symptoms. Studies suggest that about 90% of patients still have a functioning knee implant after 15 years.

Learn more as we answer some of the most frequently asked questions about total knee replacement.

When is total knee replacement recommended?

Surgery only becomes an option when conservative methods of treatment have been exhausted. Your doctor may recommend a total knee replacement if you have a chronic disorder that causes the following:

  • Moderate to severe knee pain, stiffness, and inflammation that cause serious mobility problems, thus affecting your daily activities.
  • Moderate to severe knee pain even when resting and one that does not improve with medications.
  • Presence of knee deformity.

Your orthopedic surgeon will perform a thorough clinical evaluation and physical examination first before making a recommendation.

Is total knee replacement inpatient or outpatient?

It depends on the severity of your condition. Most total knee replacement procedures are done on an outpatient basis using a minimally invasive technique. 

However, a more severe condition may require complex surgeries, thus requiring a patient to stay in the facility for a day or two. Some examples of complicated surgeries include double knee replacements or total knee arthroplasty revision.

It may also depend on the patient’s current health status and underlying medical condition. A patient with an overall good health can go home on the day of the surgery. But for those with an existing medical condition (e.g., diabetes, heart disease), then you may be required to stay in the facility for further monitoring just to be safe.

How many total joint replacements are performed each year?

According to a 2015 study, surgeons collectively perform about 1 million total knee replacements annually. With the growing prevalence of degenerative arthritis and the demand for enhanced mobility, it is said to become the most common surgical procedure in the coming years. 

Is total knee replacement painful?

Before the surgery, a doctor will administer either general or regional anesthesia so you won’t feel any pain. 

After the surgery, it’s normal to experience mild to moderate pain as your body heals from the trauma. You won’t have to worry, though, since your physician will provide medications to help manage the pain and make recovery as comfortable as possible.

Additionally, 90% of patients who had undergone this procedure experienced an immediate decrease in knee pain and enhanced knee function.

Is total knee replacement considered a major surgery?

Yes. Total knee replacement is a major surgery that may only be recommended when other treatment options have been exhausted. Since it’s a major operation, patients also need to undergo weeks of physical therapy to achieve complete recovery.

How many total knee replacements can a person have?

Knee implants may only last for about 15 to 20 years. Its strength and integrity may depend on how long and hard you use them over the years. 

So, it’s certainly possible to have a second, third, or fourth knee replacement surgery, especially if you had undergone the procedure at a young age. Some of the most common reasons why one may require a knee revision include the following:

  • Loosening or breaking of some parts of the implant due to activity or injury
  • Infection around the implant
  • Instability
  • Stiffness due to excessive scarring

Can total knee replacement cause back pain?

It’s normal for patients with knee problems to adjust their posture or the way they walk to try to alleviate the pain they feel. However, these subconscious actions usually lead to back pain in the long run.

So, patients with knee problems before who had undergone total knee replacement may still have some back aches left even after the surgery. Hopefully, they can get rid of the pain over time with their new knees in place.

Patients recovering from the procedure may also develop back pain since they’re still adjusting to their new knees. Fortunately, they can also overcome these discomfort as they learn to move naturally with their implants.

orthopedic doctors in brooksville fl

Where to find the best knee replacement surgery in the Spring Hill area?

Dr. Imad Tarabishy of Tarabishy Orthopedics is one of the best and most experienced orthopedic doctors in Brooksville, Fl. He provides high-quality medical care and services to treat various orthopedic problems. Some of the techniques he specializes in include:

Contact us to learn more about our services!

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.