Complications on delaying a knee replacement surgery
Apprehensions of losing a body part, anxiety of ending up worse than what it was, dreadful surgery, panic of the post-operation surgery pain, the fear of the unknown, etcare some of the commonest fears gripping patients today.There are no universally accepted medical guidelines to follow for scheduling or postponing surgery, but keeping in mind the severity of the joint one can take action.Despite that, patients fail to realise the risks related to delaying a knee replacement surgery, which could range from increasing pain, lesser mobility to deterioration of the joint.
A surgeon can understand the method of approach based on the acuteness of the joint. They start from being less invasive administrating anti-inflammatory/oral medications, to suggesting lifestyle changes, strengthening exercises, cortisone injections, and acupuncture to physical therapies. When these do notwork,knee replacement surgery becomes crucial.
A stitch in time saves nine
Seldom does surgery become more complicated because of a delay in joint replacement surgery; however, a delay can lead to several risks including:
• Awkward walkingthereby affecting hips
• Deformities developing inside and outside the joint
• Stiffness in the joint
• Change of posture aka skeletal system
• Compensatory issues such as back pain or pain in the other knee
• Loss of function and weakening in muscles and ligaments
• Increased pain and inability to manage it
• Lack of mobility
• Cardiovascular problems
• Difficulty in carrying out everyday activities
Don’t wait too long to know the right time for your surgery
In the past, knee replacement surgery was performed on patients that had arthritis or osteoarthritis – inflammation of certain joints. This was because walking was impossible and carrying out daily activities seemed like a chore. However, times have changed and technology has advanced massively. Younger and more active patients suffering from chronic pain are undergoing the procedure to lead a healthier and more active life.
Undergoing surgery too early is not recommended.This is because artificial joints can wear out after some years thereby needing a second surgery. On the other hand, waiting until the pain becomes unbearable is also less than ideal as the benefits of the surgery may become limited. As the cartilage of the knee or hip may be completely worn out making the surgery significantly more complicated clubbed with slower recovery.
The key thing to remember is that when you are relatively healthy and get a knee replacement, you are more likely to recover sooner with fewer complications. Increased weight, decreased endurance, cardiac and pulmonary conditions can become major concerns when you put it off for too long.Consultation with an orthopaedic is suggested to find out what is best for you. After all, you may endure pain, but your age, weight, medical conditionsmay lead to stress on other body parts making it even more difficult to convince yourself and worsening the situation “jointly”.