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Joint Replacement Surgery: 5 Frequently Asked Questions

Author: Andrew Wellman, M.D.

If you’re struggling with hip or knee pain, you may have heard about the new joint replacement technologies that are available. Here at Hedley Orthopaedic Institute and around the world, surgeons are able to perform incredibly sophisticated joint replacement surgeries, some of which deliver results we could only dream of 20 years ago. Have questions about joint replacement surgery? You might find your answer below.

#1 How common is joint replacement surgery?

About one million people in the U.S. undergo joint replacement surgery every year. As technology becomes cheaper and more widely available, this number is increasing. The hip and the knee are the two most common joints replaced.

#2 How soon will I be able to walk after joint replacement surgery?

It depends on a number of factors, including your health, the type of surgery (knee v. hip), and how the surgery went. It’s not uncommon for patients who undergo MAKOplasty knee surgery or SuperPATH hip surgery to walk the same day or next day.

#3 What can I do to improve my outcome?

Losing weight is one of the best things you can do prior to joint replacement surgery. Getting rid of excess weight alleviates the stress placed on your joints. In fact, some patients have even been able to avoid joint replacement surgery altogether through weight loss.

#4 How much physical therapy do I have to do after joint replacement surgery?

Again, this varies patient to patient. However, it’s safe to say that every patient will need at least a few physical therapy sessions. A physical therapist can help improve your range of motion and provide you with exercises that strengthen the surrounding muscles.

#5 Does joint replacement surgery have complications?

All surgeries have risk. While the benefits of today’s advanced knee and hip joint replacement surgeries are frequently touted, a good orthopaedic surgeon will go over all possible complications with you during a pre-op evaluation. Possible complications include infection, joint loosening or dislocation, nerve and blood vessel damage, and blood clots. Though rare, it’s important to know about these complications going into surgery.

For more information about joint replacement surgery, please contact Hedley Orthopaedic Institute at 602-553-3113.
Please consult with your physician before undertaking any form of medical treatment or adopting any exercise program or dietary guidelines.



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