Arthritis is one of the most disabling medical conditions faced by Americans today. An estimated 50 million American adults have been diagnosed with some type of arthritis and children account for nearly 295,000 diagnosed cases. Arthritis has become more prevalent among baby boomers who are increasing in age and women who are more likely than men to have knee joint problems in senior years. Arthritis has also become common among people who are obese with the added pressure of extra weight that produces greater wear and tear on the joints over time.
Joint pain, whether it is, knee pain, hip pain or any other- joint pain can be extremely problematic, particular over time. Degenerative Arthritis is a major focus for many Americans who are limited in their ability to complete some of the very basic living skills, such as, difficulty walking, difficulty bending down or not even being able to walk to the bathroom or kitchen. The first step might to set sub goals by commencing light activities which has been known to assist in the prevention of the disease and the prevention of progression when performed regularly. This includes a comfortable exercise routine for your fitness level.
The good news is that Arthritis treatment has been revolutionized with advancements in non-surgical methods, biologic treatments and anti-inflammatory medications for less severe cases. For example, children with Lyme disease who suffer from arthritic symptoms or arthritis in the knee and joints often fully recover from arthritis when treated immediately after diagnosis with antibiotics, such as, 28 days of Doxycycline, and possibly anti-inflammatory medications. The knee replacement and hip replacement surgery has revolutionized Arthritis treatment for people who are the most debilitated and are not able to find relief from an exercise and fitness rountine.
Hip and Knee Replacement: The Right Choice?
People with severe arthritis may turn to knee and/or hip replacement when it has become too difficult to perform daily living skill activities that they feel are essential to their quality of life, after they have not experienced adequate results from non-surgical treatment. Candidates for knee or hip replacement may have one of variety of forms of arthritis, including: Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Gout and Lupus.
In terms of treatment, the advancements are promising! As Dr. Zuckerman, past president of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons and Chair of the NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases, Department of Orthopedics, explains, “The benefits of today’s hip and knee replacements are to restore a greatly improved quality of life for each individual. With today’s technology, over 90% of those treated can expect to have well functioning joint replacement for at least twenty years. This is remarkable considering the millions of cycles that a joint works through every year. For someone who is disabled, hip and knee replacement offers an opportunity to return to a more normal life. There is probably no other medical procedure that can offer a comparable enhancement in life for those who are disabled, cannot perform daily living skills and have not responded to other treatment methods. ”
Knee and hip replacement surgery are two types of orthopedic surgeries that have maintained a long track record to allow people to make better decisions about treatment, while potentially enjoying the benefits of greater advancements. As Dr. Jacobs, Professor and Chairman, Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, IL explains, “Since the 1960’s when hip replacement surgery initially became available, there have been major improvements in the types of materials used and in the design of the artificial joints. All of this has resulted in making hip and knee replacements two of the most successful operations available for patients with limited functional abilities.”
As Dr. William R. Gallivan, Jr., Orthopedic Surgeon of Santa Barbara California, adds, “There are new techniques that may be used in joint replacement surgery, offering a less invasive approach to speed up and improve recovery, while providing greater precision during surgery to enhance outcomes.” In fact, the vast majority of today’s hip and knee replacement surgeries are performed with a spinal and/or epidural anesthesia, allowing the individual to remain awake during surgery and with less post-operative pain. With the aid of newly released computer navigation technology and robotics, Orthopedic Surgeons have the opportunity to perform surgery with greater precision, resulting in less trauma to the treatment area and in enhanced results. As Dr. Gallivan adds, “The vast majority of the people I serve are up and walking on the same day after surgery!”
In fact, the Orthopedic community continues to take strides to improve knee and hip implant technology. With the high number of U.S. soldiers requiring knee and hip replacement following serious injury, the military has recently awarded a grant that is allocated for the continued improvement of knee and hip implant technology.
Of course, there are pros and cons associated with all medical procedures. So, it’s important to learn all of the information you need to know about knee replacement surgery and hips replacement surgery before deciding on the treatment option that is right for you. Orthopedic joint surgeons may be specialized in specific techniques or have specific reason for the preference of one technique over another. Another factor in the selection for the type of appropriate treatment relates to your condition, age and other possibilities. So, it’s also wise to learn how to select your orthopedic joint surgeon. In the end, the benefit of being able to walk into your kitchen, or to the market makes these two surgeries very popular among people with debilitating Arthritis.
It is important to recognize that all information contained on this website cannot be considered to be specific medical diagnosis, medical treatment, or medical advice. As always, you should consult with a physician regarding any medical condition.