Also referenced as knee arthroplasty, knee replacement is a surgery that removes a damaged knee joint and replaces it with an artificial joint. With a new, artificial joint from Dignity Health in the Bay Area, you’ll be able to bend and move your lower leg back and forth without pain.
Why Knee Replacements are Performed
Doctors at Dignity Health use knee replacement to treat severe knee joint damage from injuries, arthritis or infections.
You may be a good candidate for knee replacement if you find that:
- Knee pain or stiffness limits your daily activities
- Knee pain is present even at rest
- The knee joint is deformed
- X-rays show severe joint damage with loss of cartilage and bone
- Other treatments, like physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medications, joint injections or less invasive surgeries, haven’t worked
What You Should Expect
Your surgeon will make an incision in the knee to remove damaged cartilage and bone before replacing it with plastic or metal surfaces. The surgery can be performed as either a total knee replacement or a partial knee replacement (during which only one side of the joint is removed).
You may spend several days in the hospital and will also need to complete physical therapy. Gradually, you’ll regain knee function with less pain. It will probably be 8 to 12 weeks before you’re feeling back to normal, with full recovery taking up to a year.
Adjusting Your Lifestyle After a Knee Replacement
Many patients who receive a knee replacement find that they are able to enjoy a return to activities they were no longer able to do before surgery. The vast majority of knee replacements still function well 15 years after surgery, but you can help extend the life of your artificial knee by:
- Avoiding contact sports and high-impact activities
- Exercising regularly to strengthen and stabilize your knee
- Learning how to lift heavy weights properly without overloading your joint
- Maintaining a healthy weight
Don’t put off living the active life that you love because of knee pain. Get back to your favorite hobbies with a knee replacement. To get started, Find a Doctor near you in the Bay Area.
Dignity Health provides knee replacements to ideal candidates across the Bay Area, including San Francisco, Santa Cruz and Redwood City.