Knee pain, whether temporary or long-term, can feel debilitating and limiting. You may realize the importance of a healthy and fit knee when it becomes difficult to do simple tasks like walking, climbing stairs, or even sitting without wincing in pain because of a hurting knee.
Factors such as a serious injury or arthritis can cause your knee to get weak, worn out, or damaged. When options such as medications and walking support do not prove to be helpful, the doctor may suggest that you undergo total knee replacement (TKR) surgery.
Let’s find out more about total knee replacement surgery in this article.
Total knee replacement, also known as total knee arthroplasty or TKR surgery, is a surgical procedure for the replacement of both sides of the knee joint with artificial parts. This surgery is also referred as knee replacement operation.
In this procedure, damaged cartilage and bone are removed from the knee joint, and metal and plastic parts are used to cap the ends of the bones that form the joint, along with the kneecap.
Total knee replacement (TKR) surgery can be used to replace knee joints damaged by arthritis or injury. It helps ease knee pain and restores mobility. It is a safe and effective procedure to correct the deformity of the leg, make the knee function better, and help you resume normal activities.
The knee joint is made of the lower end of the thigh bone (femur), the upper end of the shin bone (tibia), and the kneecap (patella). The ends of these bones are covered with articular cartilage, a substance that protects the bones and enables them to move easily within the joint.
During TKR surgery:
- The femur is replaced with a metal part.
- The tibia is replaced with a part made from metal and strong plastic.
- The patella is replaced with a part made from strong plastic.
Total knee replacement (TKR) surgery may be recommended when severe arthritis or severe injury has caused damage and pain to the knee joint that cannot be managed with medications, walking aids, or physical therapy.
Conditions that may warrant a total knee replacement (TKR) include:
- Osteoarthritis: This condition is caused by age-related inflammation, breakdown, and loss of cartilage in the joints.
- Rheumatoid Arthritis: It is an autoimmune condition where the immune system attacks the tissue lining the knee joint, leading to damaged cartilage, soreness, and stiffness.
- Post-Traumatic Arthritis: A severe knee injury may cause this type of arthritis. A break in the bones around the knee or a tear in the ligaments may affect the knee cartilage.
The doctor may recommend total knee replacement or TKR surgery when knee pain:
- Prevents you from taking part in normal daily activities
- Disrupts sleeping
- Causes difficulties in walking, climbing stairs, getting up from a chair, etc
- Makes you unable to take care of yourself
- Does not improve with other treatment modalities
- Continues even while resting
- Causes knee deformity, a noticeable arch on the inside or outside of your knee
Advantages or benefits associated with total knee replacement (TKR) surgery include:
- Significant pain relief
- Increased range of motion and mobility
- Ability to perform everyday activities and engage in physical activity without pain
- Correction of knee joint deformity
- Improved quality of life
- Long-term results for up to 20 years
As with any surgery, total knee replacement (TKR) is also associated with certain risks or complications. These include:
- Infection or bleeding
- Continued pain or stiffness in the knee joint
- Development of blood clots in the legs
- Pulmonary embolism (a blood clot in the lungs)
- Nerve damage
- Fracture during or after surgery
- Excess scar tissue formation
- Loosening or wearing out of knee replacement implants
- Excess bone formation around the artificial knee joint leading to restricted movement
- Instability and dislocation of the kneecap
Surgery can be a daunting aspect, and feeling anxious is absolutely normal. The massive amount of information you can get from the internet may confuse you even more. This is where Medfin can help. Leave us the hefty task of finding the best hospital, the finest doctor, and the latest procedure at the lowest cost. Let us take charge while you sit back and focus on your health and recovery. Think surgery! Think Medfin!