WHAT IS JOINT REPLACEMENT SURGERY?
Joint replacement surgery is removing a broken joint and placing it in a new one. A joint is where a couple or more bones come together, like the knee, hip, and shoulder. The surgery is usually done by an Arthroscopy surgeon. Sometimes, the doctor will not remove the whole joint, but will only replace or fix the damaged parts.
Myths connected with joint replacement surgery are mainly due to inaccurate information.
Some of the myths are:
- Myth: Hip and joint replacement implants are only valid for around 10 years.
FACT: This used to be true, but not today. Advances in new types of knee and hip implants have revolutionized the longevity of their effectiveness. Today, one can expect a new hip or knee replacement to last more than 20 years.
- Myth: Joint replacement surgery should be the last opportunity to reduce chronic pain.
FACT: Conservative therapies for chronic injury are always the best initial way to anyone who undergoes from joint pains. These may include medications, physical therapy, and other measures. But once the pain becomes life-affecting and limits your mobility, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor about your surgical options. Surviving with chronic pain is not healthy, and limited mobility usually results in weight gain, developed risk of cardiovascular issues and a lower quality of life.
- Myth: Joint replacement surgery needs a long time to recover.
FACT: It used to be standard for joint replacement patients to spend a week in the hospital after they received a new knee or hip. Now, patients put weight on their new hip or knee hours after their surgery and typically go home after 1-2 days. Recovery takes place in stages, with short term recovery taking 4-6 weeks while full recovery (as defined as an improvement in function and mobility and a feeling of normalcy) may take up to 6 months; some patients recover much sooner; others may take longer. There are several factors that play a role in a patient’s recovery, including attitude, physical therapy participation, and others.
- Myth: You can’t actually exercise or engage in sports activities after joint replacement surgery.
FACT: Not true! Being operative is what we want after joint replacement surgery, albeit low- impact activities such a walking, swimming, and cycling. Talk to your doctor about what activities you can do while you recover.
- Myth: Surgery means complications.
FACT: Joint replacement surgery is a major surgery. That means that there are risks involved. But it doesn’t guarantee that there will be complications. In reality, there are significantly fewer complications the more joint replacement surgeon performed.