Knee replacement surgery, or arthroplasty, involves replacing a diseased, damaged, or worn knee with an artificial joint. It is performed by an experienced knee surgeon and may be recommended if other treatment options have not been successful. Many people experience reduced knee pain and increased ability to move after knee replacement surgery. Here is an overview of knee surgery and how many hours it can take to complete:
How Long Does Knee Replacement Surgery Take?
Depending on your needs, a knee surgeon will determine whether you need a partial or total knee replacement. The time the surgery will take depends on the type of knee replacement. You can expect a knee replacement to take one to two hours, with a partial knee replacement typically taking less time than a total knee replacement.
What Is a Partial Knee Replacement Surgery?
A partial knee surgery replaces one part of the worn or damaged knee. The surgery can replace either the lateral (outside) part, medial (inside) part, or kneecap part of your knee. A partial knee replacement is often used in younger people or as a substitute for total knee replacement in individuals with confined knee osteoarthritis. The surgery is performed when the damage gets restricted to a specific knee compartment. The damaged areas get replaced with an artificial implant known as a prosthetic while the rest of the knee gets preserved. Partial knee replacement surgery is usually performed with smaller incisions. After the surgery, patients may experience a shorter recovery time and an enhanced range of motion.
What Is a Total Knee Replacement Surgery?
When your knee is severely damaged by injury or arthritis, you may consider total knee replacement surgery. The procedure is effective in relieving pain and correcting leg deformity. Total knee replacement involves all the areas of your knee joint getting replaced with prosthetic pieces. The most common reason for total knee replacement is arthritis. Surgery may also be recommended if other treatments, such as medicines, injections, physical therapy, weight loss, or bracing, have failed to relieve the knee pain. To qualify for this procedure, a person should be experiencing pain or disability that interferes with everyday tasks.
What Happens Before Choosing Knee Replacement Surgery?
Your knee surgeon will collect information about your general health before scheduling any surgery. The details will help them determine how your knee pain’s severity hinders your ability to function. They will physically examine your knee stability, strength, motion, and leg alignment. They may conduct X-rays to determine the extent of deformity or damage in your knee. Your surgeon will evaluate your results and discuss whether partial or total knee replacement is the best option to improve your function and relieve your pain.
What Is Involved in Knee Replacement Surgery?
The knee replacement procedure takes place in an operating room under anesthesia. The type of surgery depends on the extent of damage to your knee, your general health, and your age. After the procedure, your provider will monitor you in a recovery home until the anesthesia wears off. Some people can go home the same day, while others may stay in the hospital for a day or two. The decision to go home or remain admitted should be discussed with your knee surgeon following the operation.
After knee replacement surgery, you will be prescribed pain medications to help control discomfort or pain. The recovery time typically depends on your age and the type of surgery you had. It can take six weeks or longer to return to your normal activities following the knee replacement surgery, though full recovery can take a full year. During this time, you can rely on a walking frame or crutches. Avoid vigorous activity or strenuous exercises.
How Long Will Knee Replacement Surgery Last?
Knee replacement surgery can last for 20 years. Individuals who undergo the procedure at a younger age may be more likely to need revision surgery, as they may outlive the lifespan of the prosthetic. Younger individuals may also be more active, putting more strain on the prosthetic over time. Due to these reasons, surgeons are often cautious when recommending knee replacement surgery in uncharacteristically young patients.
Get Help From a Professional Knee Surgeon
Knee replacement surgery may be an option for relieving your knee-related swelling, pain, and limited mobility. If you’re considering a knee replacement, find a surgeon who uses advanced techniques and offers professional, compassionate care. A qualified knee surgeon can recommend partial or total replacement surgery and help you know what your knee needs to heal fully.