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Total knee replacement (TKR) is a surgical procedure that involves replacing all or part of the damaged knee joint with artificial components. This type of surgery has been around for many years and is most commonly performed to relieve pain, restore mobility and improve quality of life in people suffering from severe knee arthritis and other conditions that damage the structures of the joint.
There are two main types of knee replacement surgeries that are typically done. A total knee joint replacement is where the entire joint is replaced with an artificial surface. The second one is a partial knee replacement where only one compartment of the injured knee joint is replaced. Total knee arthroplasty is the more common of these two procedures.
The knee joint is composed of four bones: the femur (thigh bone), tibia (shin bone), patella (kneecap), and fibula. These bones are connected by two main types of ligaments, called the collateral and cruciate, which provide stability to the joint. The joint is also surrounded by a thin layer of tissue called articular cartilage that provides cushioning and shock absorption.
Total knee replacement may be recommended if you have severe osteoarthritis that causes persistent pain and stiffness or limits your activities of daily living such as walking and climbing stairs. Other conditions that may indicate candidacy for total knee replacement include rheumatoid arthritis, post-traumatic arthritis, or degenerative joint disease.
The primary benefit of total knee replacement is improved quality of life due to decreased pain and increased mobility. Other benefits may include reduced risk of falls, enhanced stability in walking, increased range of motion and strength in the leg muscles, reduced swelling, delayed progression of arthritis or other conditions causing joint damage, improved posture, alignment, and even improved moods.
While total knee replacement can provide significant relief from pain and improved mobility, it is not without risks. Potential risks include infection, nerve damage, blood clots, joint instability or dislocation, fracture of the bones around the joint, implant loosening or failure and premature wear of the artificial components.
The implant material used for total knee replacement is typically a combination of metal and plastic components. The metal components are made from titanium or cobalt chrome, while the plastic component is typically composed of polyethylene. These materials are chosen for their durability, strength, and biocompatibility.
Total knee replacement is typically performed under general anesthesia. During the procedure, your surgeon will make an incision in the front of your knee and remove the damaged bone and joint surfaces. The artificial components are then inserted into place and secured with bone cement or screws. The area is then closed up with sutures. After surgery, you’ll be taken to a recovery room where the medical team will monitor your condition closely until you are stable enough to go home.
Prior to total knee replacement, it’s important for patients to be as healthy and fit as possible. Your doctor may recommend several steps including lifestyle modifications such as weight loss and quitting smoking, physical therapy exercises to strengthen the muscles around the damaged joint, and stretching exercises to improve the range of motion. You may also need blood tests in order to ensure you are healthy enough for surgery.
Physical therapy and rehabilitation guidelines will be given to help ensure proper healing and optimum outcome. Pain medication may also be prescribed to manage discomfort. Regular follow-up visits with your doctor will be necessary to monitor progress and achieve the best possible outcome.
It’s important to keep an eye out for any potential complications such as infection, nerve damage, swelling or stiffness in the knee joint area, and problems with the artificial components. Additionally, long-term effects including implant failure, arthritis of other joints, or total knee replacement revision may occur so it’s important to keep up with regular follow-up visits.
Generally, patients can expect to see an improvement in their symptoms within 3-6 months following total knee replacement surgery. At this point, most patients have achieved full healing with an increased range of motion and improved strength in the joint area. It generally takes up to a year for total recovery.
Clinical studies have found that total knee replacements are highly successful with a 90-95% success rate at 5 years post-surgery. The procedures are also durable with most total knee replacements lasting 10-20 years or more depending on the age and activity level of the patient.
After total knee replacement, low-impact exercises such as walking, biking, and swimming are usually recommended to help strengthen the muscles around the joint and improve the range of motion. High-impact activities such as running should be avoided to prevent wear on artificial components. It’s important to discuss any activity recommendations with your doctor before beginning an exercise program.
We are a premium physical therapy clinic offering one-on-one therapy in a private luxury treatment suite to help you get better as quickly as possible.
We have one of the most popular treatment centers in the heart of Delray Beach. We provide top of the line knee joint replacement physical therapy in Delray Beach, Florida. Physical therapy helps you decrease pain, swelling, and also helps you strengthen your muscles to achieve normal movement. We often notice that patients who properly follow the advice of the physiotherapist make comparatively better recovery.
Physical therapists often help total knee replacement patients progress from using walking aids such as crutches or walkers, to be able to walk comfortably with minimal assistance after surgery. They also work on improving the range of motion, flexibility, and strength in the replaced leg by providing exercises that can be performed at home.
In addition to physical therapy, total knee replacement patients should ensure they follow their doctor’s advice on recovery, such as limiting activities that require bending or kneeling and maintaining a healthy weight through diet and exercise. Following these steps along with physical therapy will help total knee replacement patients recover faster and enable them to return to regular daily activities more quickly.
Your physical therapist will most likely be in contact with your surgeon to make sure you’re getting the best care. Often, you will need to go into the physical therapist’s office for at least four-six week to help with your recovery. This is because your recovery from this injury is not immediate, and you may require more treatment. You will be given exercises that will reduce your dependency on the supporting devices and help you gain strength and flexibility. After your doctors and physiotherapist become confident about you gaining full recovery, you will be free to continue with normal work and heavy exercises.
Our team of experienced physical therapists will help create an individualized treatment plan that is tailored specifically to your needs and goals. With our guidance and support, you can be sure you are getting the best possible care for your total knee replacement instantly and get back on track as soon as possible! Contact us now to get started.