Knee arthroplasty,or knee replacement surgery can be opted for people suffering from osteoarthritis as a treatment measure when the pain associated with this condition becomes unbearable. This procedure requires extensive surgery and involves the replacement of the weight-bearing structures of the knee with a view to alleviate pain or disability.
Rheumatic arthritis and psoriatic arthritis patients may also be treated by knee replacement surgery. However, like any other surgical procedure, this technique is also susceptible to many risk factors including the ones described below. Thus, one should consider this treatment option only when other conservative treatment methods have failed to display any significant results.
Knee Replacement Surgery Associated Complications
Risk Of An Infection
The risk of post-operative infections is present in every surgical procedure and is also a risk factor in knee replacement surgery. Chills, fever, painful joints and many other symptoms indicate the development of a post-operative infection that has been present for more than a month. Infections occuring in the joint post the knee replacement surgery has been observed in less than 7% patients undergoing this treatment. The doctor may prescrie an antibiotic in case you develop an infection.
Post-Operative Blood Loss
Blood loss occuring as a result of surgical procedure when exceeds a certain limit, may prove to be harmful to the patient. Anemia may also be caused as a result of excessive blood loss following the replacement surgery.
Deep Vein Thrombosis
Probably the most common complication associated with knee replacement surgery, deep vein thrombosis is a blood clot that may occur in vein and disrupt the normal circulation, proving to be fatal at times. The doctor may prescribe you certain medications that would aid the thinning of your blood and exercises that impove your circulation.
Though the reason for this is yet to be known, studies show that a certain number of people became abnormally obese after the knee replacement procedure.
Post-operative periprosthetic fractures are more significantly observed in old aged males who undergo knee replacement surgeries that people in other age groups.
A very rare condition, insability due to dislocation of the kneecap and its movement to other areas, accompanied by pain and discomfort is observed among a low number of patients post surgery. Surgery may be required to bring back the kneecap to its original position.
Loss Of Motion
Post the total knee replacement procedure, motion is found to be restricted to a certain angle in some percent of patients. Stiffness of the joints and instability is observed.
Chipping away of the platform inserted in the tibial area during the surgery leading to fractures are an important source of concern. Nerve injuries are observed in 1-2% of patients undergoing knee replacement surgery.
Pain and stiffness leading to restricted motion is a problem in 8-23% patients. Loosening of the implants, swelling occuring as a result of infections, irritation occuring due to accumulation of microscopic particles of plastic in the synovial fluid etc. are just a few conditions that may affect a person post the knee replacement surgery.