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Home >> Specialities >> Bone, Joint Replacement and Orthopedics >> Knee Replacement Surgery

Knee Replacement Surgery

With more than 2.5 lakh people undergoing the procedure in India every year, knee replacement tops the list of most common orthopaedic surgeries. It aims at replacing a dysfunctional or diseased knee joint of a patient with new prosthetic components that are artificially created to mimic the structure and function of the original joint. The procedure usually takes an hour or two and is performed under the influence of general anaesthesia. 

What is knee replacement?
Knee replacement, also known as knee arthroplasty, is an orthopaedic intervention that involves the surgical replacement of damaged knee components with the help of prosthetic components. The procedure is performed on patients who have been experiencing chronic knee pain that is not responding to any non-invasive treatments like medication and therapy. 

What are the different types of knee replacement? 
Knee replacement is broadly classified into two different types:
●    Total knee replacement, in which all the parts of the knee joint are replaced
●    Partial knee replacement, in which only the affected part of the knee joint is replaced while leaving the other components intact.

Who is recommended to go for a knee replacement? 
Knee replacement is recommended for patients with severe joint degeneration due to any of the following:
●    Arthritis
●    Age-related wear and tear
●    Unusual bone growths 
●    Lack of proper blood flow
●    Injury or trauma
●    Knee deformity

What happens before the procedure?
●    A series of tests will be performed for a thorough examination and evaluation
●    Your medical history will be thoroughly assessed to ensure you do not have any condition that can interfere with the course of the surgery.
●    Your doctors will brief you about the medical procedure, along with the various benefits and risks involved 
●    It is important to inform your doctor if you are pregnant or suspect pregnancy
●    You will need to refrain from consuming anything, starting at least 8 hours prior to the surgery
●    Some patients may be given mild sedatives, to help them relax prior to the procedure 
●    You will need to arrange for someone to accompany you to the hospital 
●    You will have to make certain arrangements at home to make it easier for you post-discharge. 

What happens during the procedure?
●    The surgery is carried out while the patient is sedated. This is done to ensure that you do not feel any pain or discomfort. 
●    An intravenous line will be connected to your arm to administer nutritional fluids and medication.
●    Your vitals, i.e. heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen levels, etc, will be keenly monitored 
●    Once you are under the influence of anaesthesia, the surgical site will be cleaned and doctors will carefully make an incision to access the affected joint components.
●    The affected parts of the knee joint are carefully removed and replaced with the prosthetic components 
●    The incision is then closed and a drain may be placed to allow excess fluids to come out

What to expect after the procedure?
●    After the procedure, you are likely to experience mild pain and discomfort. Your doctors will prescribe pain medication to help you deal with the same.
●    Rigorous physical activities are to be avoided as these can put unnecessary strain on the knee
●    You will need to go for physiotherapy to help in quick recovery
●    You will also have to go for regular check-ups to help your doctors keep a track of your progress

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