Common Knee Replacement Problems to worry about?

Best knee doctor and so many people says that Knee Replacement problems do not occur most of the time!

At the same time so many people who has already undergone knee replacement surgery feels that problems do exist.


Whom to believe? Are you worried?

Are you in dilemma? Do you feel what happens to you if you are having Knee replacement problems?

Let us put reality and medical business together so we can understand better!

Shall we?

Every year so many total knee replacement surgery are performed all around the globe. And it turns out to be having good results that is the reason Knee arthoplasty numbers are increasing every year.

Does it mean it has 100% success rate?

Does it mean if you have undergone total knee replacement surgery or partial knee replacement surgery you won't be having any knee replacement problems?

I would say in my own experience 95-97% of knee replacement patients has got excellent satisfaction with what they have got.

Still there are 3-5% cases where knee replacement problems can develop?

Do you or will you belong to first group whose life has changed 180 degree or second group who is wondering what struck them?

We have to understand that although knee replacement is one of the best successful treatment for arthritis pain in knee still its a surgery. And with surgery problems may come!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hope not..............

Common knee replacement problems

For the sake of understanding better let us divide those problems into separate groups depending on the stage of knee replacement surgery recovery.

  • Surgical Problems
  • Medical problems
  • Anesthesia problems

Most of the people who get knee replacement complications get it from any of 3 broad categories mentioned above.

First of all we have to understand that we are making artificial knee joint. Your god created human body might not like it and have a rejection issue too.

Surgical Knee Replacement Problems

It is quite important for you as a patient to understand Surgical problems related to Total Knee replacement surgery. Commonest problems are:


  • Hemorrhage: Like with any other major surgery uncontrolled blood loss can be serious threat but it happens quite rarely. It happens if blood vessel is cut by mistake and can not be clamped. Although not a major problem blood transfusion during or after surgery is needed.
  • Wound Breakdown: means opening up of wound which can happen in cases of diabetes, infections or elderly and frail patients. Superficial breakdown not serious but monitoring may be needed.Wound heals by itself in upcoming few weeks.
  • Cellulitis: superficial skin infection in skin. Skin turns red,warm and painful over surgical incision. Not serious but surgeons take it with caution because it can spread in joint.
  • Ulcers: Tape blisters for sensitive skin patients. Heals by itself. Pressure ulcers on heel and buttocks for those patients who does not move much.
  • Hematoma:Some kind of hematoma following any surgery is natural and resolve on its own. Hematoma can be large and cause joint pain at surgery site. So if you seen heamtoma around knee please do not worry.
  • Seroma: Sometimes serous fluid oozes out through knee joint sutures.It is common and happens due to dissolution of adipose tissue.
  • Fractured Bone: Most probable Knee Replacement problems. Occurs when placing implants into the bone.Doctors take xray before beginning postoperative therapy sessions. May require additional fixation surgery. In most cases though less weight bearing on operated leg resolves condition. Happens in frail elderly individuals.
  • Injury to nerves: Common to have numbness due to superficial nerve injury. Watch out for foot drop which can happen due to peroneal nerve injury. Knee orthosis may be needed to treat it.
  • Limping: Common to have limping following surgery. Weakness of knee muscles is the commonest reason. Also pain apprehension is also the cause. Although operation is done muscles get stronger by knee strengthening exercises.

These are some of the less serious problems we have seen.

Specific Surgical Knee replacement Problems

  • Knee Stiffness: Common to have knee stiffness following surgery and so Knee replacement rehab is started as soon as possible following surgery and demands range of motion exercises. Still in some cases Manipulations under anesthesia is done by surgeon if he feel movements are not adequate.In this procedure scar tissue is broken by mobilizing the joint under anesthesia for few minutes.


  • Instability of Knee Ligaments: Knee joint has not only flexion-extension movement but also some kind of side to side rotation movements. When total Knee replacement surgery is done, ligaments are stretched or may be cut or not balanced correctly. This can be treated by knee brace. More over type of implants used also plays a crucial role here.
  • Balancing Issues
  • Bow legs: If patient had bow legs before surgery, although all efforts are made to correct angulation problems of knee some kind of angulation remains. Sometimes overcorrection also happens and patient should be ready for it.
  • Knock Knees: Also in knock knees above mentioned scenarios can happen.
  • Extensor Mechanism Disruption: it requires a separate page of information.
  • Locking Knees: This develops after years and sue to scar tissue.Sometimes can happen due to bone cement floating in joint cavity. If symptoms are severe then arthroscopy is needed.
  • Joint Swelling: Although joint swelling is normal following Knee surgery for 1-3 months , persistent swelling needs to be drained . It happens mainly due to over use of joint after surgery like walking for long distance in 2 months following surgery. It can also relate to knee joint infection and need doctors attention. Doctor does fluid aspiration for diagnosis.
  • Pseudogout: It can happens months after surgery.
  • Compartment syndrome

Please also see knee replacement infections also.

Please go through knee replacement complications article for medical and Anesthetic problems.

Go back to total Knee replacement from knee replacement problems.

Go back to home page from knee replacement problems.


Please if you have a real life experience or you liked what I have shared with you here please comment in comment section so that other people who read this can get benefited.

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See Also



Revision Surgery

Complications

Knee Prosthesis