Signs You May Need Knee Replacement

Posted on September 1, 2016

 

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If you're experiencing knee pain, you may think it's time for a knee replacement. To determine if surgery will help, you'll need to speak to an orthopedic surgeon on Long Island.

Doctors generally delay knee replacement surgery for as long as possible and try non-invasive measures like pain relief medications, physical therapy and assistive devices. However, when these options no longer work, knee replacement surgery is often necessary.

Your primary care doctor will refer you to an orthopedic surgeon who will evaluate your knee and determine if the time is right for surgery. In some cases, you may not be a candidate for surgery if you have an infection or if your bones won't support an artificial knee.

To decide if it's time for a knee replacement, your orthopedic surgeon will perform a thorough exam, take x-rays and assess your knees for strength and range of motion. The doctor will ask you to describe your pain and talk about any injuries you have may have experienced recently. You might consider keeping a record of your knee pain to share with your doctor.

When Should You Consult a Doctor?

There are some signs that can clue you in that it's time to schedule a consultation. For example:

  • If your pain persists and occurs frequently,
  • If you experience knee pain during and after physical activity,
  • If you can't walk up stairs,
  • If you can't get up out of chairs or bathtubs,
  • If your level of mobility has decreased,
  • If pain relievers and assistive devices aren't providing enough relief,
  • If your knee gets stiff from sitting for long periods of time,
  • If you experience pain during wet weather,
  • If you have pain that prevents you from sleeping,
  • If you can't bend your knee,
  • If your knees are stiff and swollen,
  • If your knee joint fees like it's "grating" when you move it,

What's the Next Step?

Knee replacement surgery is a very common surgery. In fact, 600,000 people undergo this type of surgery every year. Most people who have undergone a total need replacement experience an improvement in mobility and function.

If you feel like it's time to explore knee replacement surgery at a Long Island medical center, please ask your primary care physician to refer you to a PBMC orthopedic surgeon.

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