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What To Expect With Knee Replacement Surgery

What To Expect With Knee Replacement Surgery

Knee replacement surgery, also known as arthroplasty is performed to relieve pain and restore function in severely diseased knee joints. The most common reason to have a knee replacement is to relieve severe pain caused by osteoarthritis. People who require knee replacement surgery typically have difficulty walking, climbing stairs, and performing day-to-day activities like standing up out of a car. Knee pain this severe can alter an individual’s lifestyle dramatically, preventing them from participating in activities they love. Many athletes also require knee replacement surgery at some point in their careers to be able to continue playing their sport or to live an active lifestyle, pain-free. An orthopedic surgeon will choose from a variety of knee replacement prostheses and surgical techniques considering your age, weight, activity level, knee size and shape, and overall health.


What Is Knee Replacement?

The goal of knee replacement surgery is to resurface the parts of the knee joint that have been damaged and to relieve knee pain that cannot be controlled by other methods such as physical therapy and medication. During the surgery, your surgeon will remove the damaged cartilage and bone from the knee joint and replace it with an artificial joint made from metal and plastic. Only the surface of the bones are removed, not the entire bone. Depending upon the case, the patella (knee cap) is resurfaced with a plastic button as well.

Preparing For Knee Replacement Surgery
Before you commit to the surgery, make sure to ask your surgeon any questions you may have so you have a full understanding of the procedure. Tell your healthcare team about any medications you are currently taking or have taken in the past and if you suffer from any allergies. Leading up to your surgery date, eat a healthy diet to help lower your chances of getting sick before the procedure and to help with faster recovery times. One of the most important things you can do to prepare for the surgery is to create a plan for when you come home from surgery. This will include setting up your home in a way that you can easily access certain things such as food in your home without requiring too much movement that may put you at risk for falling or injuring your knee. Also plan to have someone drive you to and from the hospital and help take care of you for the first few days after your surgery.

During The Procedure
Knee replacement surgery is most often performed while you are asleep under general anaesthesia. On the day of your procedure, you will be taken to an operating room where an anaesthesiologist will administer the anaesthesia and monitor your heart rate and breathing throughout the surgery. Your surgeon will begin the procedure by cleaning the incision area and then by making a small incision to expose the knee joint. The surgeon will remove the damaged surfaces of the knee joint and will resurface it with prosthesis made from metal and plastic. The incision will be closed with stitches and surgical staples and a drain may be placed in the incision site to remove fluid. A sterile bandage will be applied once the procedure is complete.

Recovery After Knee Replacement Surgery
You will be taken to a recovery room after the procedure for observation where nurses will ensure your blood pressure, pulse, and breathing are stable. How long you stay in recovery will depend on your individual needs but most people go home the same day as the procedure. You will be encouraged to move your knee joint as much as you can within reason to increase blood flow to your leg and prevent blood clots and swelling. Your surgeon will also refer you to a physical therapist who will design a recovery exercise program tailored specifically for you. Over time, you will be required to perform more exercises to increase mobility in your new knee joint.

Knee Replacement Surgery At Okanagan Health Surgical Centre

Okanagan Health Surgical Centre in Kelowna is a world-class private surgical facility providing advanced orthopedic surgeries including knee replacement surgery, ACL surgery, foot and ankle surgery, and more.  We provide minimally invasive procedures to allow our patients a faster recovery time so they can get back to living a pain-free life.

The team of private surgeons will be sure to answer any questions you may have during a complimentary consultation regarding knee surgery and procedures. To book your consultation today call us at 1-250-868-9799 or Toll-Free: 1-877-505-8895 or fill out the contact form below.


Q: How long does it take to recover from knee replacement surgery?
A: Recovery can take anywhere between 6-12 months depending on your condition.

Q: Will I be put under general anaesthesia during my knee replacement surgery?
A: Yes, your surgeon will likely use general anaesthesia during your surgery. 

Q: Does an orthopedic surgeon perform knee replacement procedures?
A: Yes, your knee replacement surgery will be performed by an orthopedic surgeon.

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