Skip to Content

Published on May 01, 2015

Don't Let Joint Pain Hold You Back

May 1, 2015

man holding knee in painThe decision to have joint replacement surgery comes down to your answer to one question: is joint pain changing how you live?

If the answer is “yes,” and nonsurgical treatments such as physical therapy and pain management aren’t enough to allow you to enjoy your favorite activities or complete everyday tasks without being overwhelmed by pain, joint replacement may be right for you.

“If a patient has severe osteoarthritis that causes the joint to become bone on bone [lacking cushioning cartilage], he or she might want to ask an orthopedic surgeon about candidacy for a joint replacement,” says Dave Smith, coordinator of KishHealth System’s Joint Center. “Ultimately, the decision to have surgery is a quality-of-life issue.”

Individuals with arthritis of the knee that’s confined to one area of the joint may be candidates for partial joint replacement. For most patients, however, total joint replacement is best.

“Most individuals require total joint replacement because arthritis typically doesn’t stop after damaging one part of the joint,” Smith says. “It usually takes over the entire structure.”

Want detailed information about what to expect before and after hip or knee replacement at the KishHealth System Joint Center? Visit kishjointcenter.org to download the guidebooks for both procedures.

Preparing For Surgery

If you’re scheduled for joint replacement, place the following items on your to-do list in the weeks leading up to the surgery:

  • Arrange for a friend or family member to help with errands and household chores and to provide general support after surgery.
  • Prepare your home to make your life easier once you return from the hospital. Remove fall hazards such as area rugs and pet toys. Place frequently used items within arm’s reach of your preferred chair. Outfit your bathroom with a shower chair or a grab bar.
  • Follow your physician’s recommendations for preoperative exercise to ready your body for rehabilitation therapy after surgery. Include plenty of walking in your regimen to improve blood flow prior to the procedure.

Footer Curve