Knee & Hip Replacement
Your hips and knees have a big job... they’re major weight-bearing joints in your body! So when you experience hip or knee pain, it can be quite literally debilitating. At the Rochelle Multi-Specialty Clinic, the MOI specialists are dedicated to the prevention, early diagnosis, and treatment of hip, knee and joint pain. Many patients who undergo treatment — whether it’s surgical or not — have been able to resume a more active lifestyle because of reduced pain and discomfort in their hips and knees. But while medication and rehabilitation therapy can often alleviate the problem, sometimes they’re not enough.
Joint Replacement vs. Non-Surgical Treatment
for Knee or Hip Pain
A careful examination by your doctor and routine x-rays usually can determine the actual cause of your pain and whether joint replacement surgery is necessary. Joint replacement surgery is typically not even considered until non-surgical treatments have been tried and been found ineffective – meaning you are still having constant joint pain. While it is a last resort, today’s joint replacements are extremely effective and are considered one of the safest, most reliable treatments in any area of medicine. A hip or knee replacement done today is usually a lifelong solution for arthritis in the hip and knee.
Common Joint Replacement Surgery Questions
How do you prepare for your hip replacement?
Before surgery, you will meet with your RCH MOI orthopaedic surgeon to talk about your medical history, do a brief examination and examine your hip – paying close attention to the range of motion you have with your hip and the strength of the muscles surrounding it. Tests such as an x-ray, MRI or blood work may also be ordered at this time. Your doctor may have you do some at-home exercises to help strengthen muscles and improve flexibility. These exercises have been known to help with the outcome of the surgery and provide faster recovery times.
What should you expect when having your hip replaced?
One of the first people you may meet with on the day of your surgery is the anesthesiologist. He or she will administer general anesthetic (which puts you unconscious) or a spinal block (which numbs the lower half of your body). During surgery, the surgeon will make an incision over the front or side of your hip, remove the diseased or damaged bone and cartilage, implant the prosthetic socket into your pelvic bone, then replace the round top of your femur (thigh bone) with a prosthetic ball.
What is the recovery time like for a hip replacement?
During recovery at the hospital, you will meet with a physical therapist who will assign you exercise to do both in the hospital and at home. These exercises will help you gradually build strength and flexibility in the hip joint until you are able to put your full weight on your leg without walking assistance. Most people can resume their normal activities — even if it is a lighter fashion — six to eight weeks after having surgery.
What is the success rate of a hip replacement?
Hip replacement surgery is effective more than 90 percent of the time. You can expect to notice a reduced level of pain and an increased range in the motion of your hip after surgery. High-impact activities may still be outside of the reach of what you can do in the future, but swimming, walking and playing golf are all activities most enjoy again.
How do you prepare for your knee replacement?
You will meet with your RCH MOI orthopaedic surgeon before having surgery. During this visit, the surgeon will ask you about your medical history, perform a physical exam and assess the damage to your knee — noting your current range of motion, stability, and strength. X-rays are often used to determine the extent of knee damage. Being at a healthy weight and in shape before surgery will help speed along the recovery process. Your doctor may have you do some at-home exercises and/or follow a nutritional diet prior to performing the surgery.
What is recovery time like for a knee replacement?
The staff at RCH will have you up and moving within 24 hours of your surgery. Your physical therapist will begin showing you how to exercise your knee and gradually increase your mobility. Four to six weeks after surgery, you can begin resuming normal daily activities. Driving is also possible at four weeks if you can bend your knee to sit in the car and have enough muscle control to operate the brakes and accelerator.
What can you expect when having your knee replaced?
Knee replacement surgery takes about two hours. RCH uses the very newest technology in knee replacement, the Signature Biomet Knee. This state-of-the-art, MRI-based technology is custom made for your individual needs. It uses a three-dimensional guide and precise alignment of the new knee with the entire leg. During surgery, your knee will be bent so all the joints are exposed. You can expect to have a 6- to 10-inch incision scar from the procedure.
What is the success rate of a knee replacement?
Most people who have knee replacement surgery have significant pain relief, improved mobility and a better quality of life. Low-impact activities such as biking, walking, swimming and golfing will well be within your limits. High-impact activities should be avoided, however, unless you have permission from your doctor.