If you’re considering knee replacement surgery, you’ve probably been living with knee pain for far too long.
Minor aches and pains can be a normal part of aging. But for some people, knee pain and stiffness becomes intolerable. If you have trouble walking, climbing stairs or getting restful sleep, or had a knee injury, knee replacement surgery may help where other treatments have failed.
Your knee is a large, complex joint. It lets you bend your legs and can withstand forces up to eight times your body weight when you run or squat down to pick something up.
Three bones make up your knee joint: the bottom of your thigh, the top of your shin and your kneecap. A layer of slippery tissue called cartilage covers the ends of these bones so they glide against each other.
People can have knee pain for several reasons:
Mild knee pain may be managed with medication, physical therapy or walking aids that support your weight (like a cane). But if your pain gets worse, it can interfere with normal activity. You may have trouble standing up, getting in and out of a car or walking short distances.
Knee replacement surgery “resurfaces” one or more of the bones that make up your knee joint. The damaged cartilage is removed and your bones are capped with metal or plastic parts (sometimes called a prosthesis or implant).
After surgery recovery most patients report little or no pain, and improved mobility. And thanks to modern design and materials, today’s implants may last 10-20 years before needing replacement.
Mercy’s orthopedic surgeons have helped thousands of patients like with knee replacement procedures that include:
If knee pain or knee injury is taking away your mobility and independence, talk to your Mercy physician about your treatment options. Together we’ll get you back on your feet, and back to your old self.