If you’ve had a knee injury or are bothered by the pain of arthritis, specifically, the progression of osteoarthritis, total knee replacement surgery may be in your future. This procedure is effective at counteracting the damage, inflammation and pain that can limit your ability to flex and extend your knees. If you’ve been suffering from osteoarthritis for some time, your knee joint may be so deteriorated that doing basic things like sitting and lying down are extremely difficult.
Why total knee replacement surgery works
In use since 1968, total knee replacement is considered one of the safest and most effective procedures in orthopedics. The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons notes that total knee replacement provides significant pain relief for more than 90 percent of those who’ve undergone the surgery.
During a total knee replacement, your surgeon replaces the knee area of your thighbone and the knee area of your shinbone with implants. Whether metal or plastic implants, both provide the bones of your knee joint with smooth surfaces on which to flex and bend. Your surgeon may also replace the undersurface of your kneecap with a plastic coating.
Recovery time after knee replacement surgery in Star Valley
It’s a journey that requires patience, dedication and perseverance, but you can do it. Generally, people need about 12 weeks to complete the physical rehabilitation process and another six months to a year to get back to full strength.
Everyone recovers a little differently from a total knee replacement. That said, here are a few things to keep in mind as you recover from your procedure:
- After total knee replacement, you may spend three to five days in the hospital.
- Even before you leave the operating room, your knee may be cradled in a passive motion machine so your knee flexibility and extension limits can be monitored.
- You’ll start weight-bearing therapy right after your operation. You may also begin some physical and occupational therapy.
- You will likely be able to stand and walk—with the support of a cane or walker—before you leave the hospital.
- You will be prescribed physical therapy for continued rehabilitation, with exercises you do with your physical therapist and at home.
The skill and experience to perform knee replacement here in Star Valley
If you or a loved one is experiencing the pain and limited mobility of a knee injury or arthritis, talk to us at Salt River Orthopaedics, a division of Star Valley Health. Our board-certified orthopaedic surgeons are here to perform life-changing knee replacement surgery in Star Valley. We are proud to offer nationally recognized, exceptional care through the convenience of seven Salt River Orthopedic locations throughout western Wyoming and Northern Utah.
If you’re in pain, know that the care you need to feel better, move better and live better is close by! To schedule an appointment, call 307-885-5870 or use our easy, online form.