10 Signs You Need A Hip or Knee Replacement
Joint discomfort can put a damper on your day-to-day activities. Basic movements, such as walking up a flight of stairs or sitting in a low chair, can become obstacles. Plus, you may feel discouraged when you’re unable to participate in your favorite sports or hobbies. Hip or knee replacement surgery can offer pain relief, better mobility and an improved quality of life - but is it right for you?
Wear And Tear On Joints
“The natural cushioning in your joints can wear out over time or due to injuries, and the experience can be excruciating,” said Dr. J. Sawyer Croley, orthopedic surgeon with Houston Methodist Orthopedics & Sports Medicine at Clear Lake. “With joint replacement surgery, an orthopedic surgeon removes the damaged joint surfaces and replaces them with an artificial joint made of plastic or metal parts.”
Here are 10 signs that it might be time to consider joint replacement surgery:
- You have frequent or intense joint pain with activity.
- You have difficulty walking, sitting down or standing up.
- You suffer pain while at rest (day or night), or pain that interferes with sleep.
- You have inflammation, stiffness and swelling in the joint.
- Your symptoms have been long-lasting or progressively getting worse.
- Tests show that osteoarthritis is causing wear-and-tear damage to your joints.
- You’ve tried rest and medications to reduce inflammation, and it hasn’t worked.
- Steroid injections and medications no longer provide adequate pain relief.
- You’re suffering side effects from pain medications.
- Joint pain is taking a toll on you physically and mentally.
Other Factors To Consider
If pain is interfering with your daily life and your symptoms haven’t responded to conservative treatments, surgery may be recommended as a next step. “Your age, the condition of your joints and other health factors are also taken into consideration when evaluating you as a candidate for joint replacement surgery,” Croley said.
Having a hip or knee replacement can change your life, but it’s not something you want to rush into. The timing is important, because planning for joint replacement surgery requires thinking about how your recovery may affect your ability to work or perform tasks at home. To achieve your best recovery, you’ll need to follow through on your doctor’s instructions and do daily exercises as part of a rehabilitation program.
Thinking about joint replacement surgery? An orthopedic specialist at Houston Methodist Orthopedics & Sports Medicine at Clear Lake can review minimally invasive options and discuss the potential risks and benefits of joint replacement surgery. Call (713) 363-9090 for an appointment.