Knee Cap Replacement and Surgery

Kneecap and knee replacement surgery is a common elective procedure opted by those who have reached the age of 60. However, your healthcare providers will try to delay it as far as possible, unless your knee are starting to give you misaligned gait or causing you constant pain and stiffness which affects your daily activities, and you find medications or exercises no longer able to reduce the discomforts.

Hence, before suggesting you undergo the procedure, you will usually be advised either to lose weight, take some NSAIDs or attend sessions of physiotherapy. If you are considering or being considered for a kneecap replacement surgery, you must have so many concerns hanging above you. As you scroll down, you may find the following explanations useful.

How long does it take to recover from a knee replacement?

After a knee replacement surgery, you can expect between one to five days of hospitalisation before going home. You will have further appointment after six weeks to check your recovery progress. Between that time, you must take care of the surgery wound well to avoid unwanted infection. You should also consider other factors that may lengthen recovery period such as your age, general health, muscles strength and other joint conditions.

You are usually able to go back to your work after six to eight weeks if your works are mainly desk works. However, it is advisable to continue working only after 10 to 18 weeks if your works require constant moving and long hours of standing up. If you have partial knee replacement, the downtime may be shortened to only two to three weeks.

Nonetheless, the after-effects of the surgery may take longer to subside, including stiff knee movement, pain at surgery area that can last up to six months, swelling of the feet and ankle or at wound area, or infection. If any of these occurs to you after a knee replacement surgery, consult your healthcare providers as soon as possible. Be rest assured that complications only developed in 1 out of 20 patients and most of the time they are treatable.

Can you still walk without a kneecap?

A kneecap or patella acts as an extensor to your leg movement mechanism. It aids the overall efficiency of its functions. Hence, without a kneecap you should expect some loss of smoothness of your movement, but never to worry too much because you can still go about your usual activities like before. Of course, this would include walking. An orthopaedic doctor in Singapore even testify that there are patients who after having knee surgery, take part in intense sport activities which include snowboarding, skiing and triathlons.

What is the best age to have a knee replacement?

After an initial kneecap replacement surgery, a patient who undergo it can expect 20 years of reliability. Then, the artificial knee usually begins to wear off. It is also important to note that for someone who is obese, involves with heavy manual duty, exercises by running or plays strenuous sports, artificial knee may last for a shorter time.

Based on this general calculation, 60 years old is most often quoted as the best age to have a knee replacement, because in contrast with human life expectancy, it is considered not too early and not too late. Most of the time, patients who have earlier replacement need to undergo repeat surgery again after that.

What causes pain years after knee replacement?

If pain persists after years of replacement, the best option is to consult the experts. However, among known causes is infection. This is because the implanted tissue that replaces the actual knee has no blood supply. It makes it more prone to bacterial infection from time to time. Other conditions that can also affect the replacement area are as cement fracture and malalignment of the implants. Pain are even more common in overweight individuals.

Besides, kneecap and knee replacement surgery are mainly safe procedure and new innovations continue to improve the techniques and options. Do not hesitate to talk to your healthcare providers to obtain further information.

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