Tuesday, 25 of July of 2017

Category » Knee Replacement

Joint Replacement Surgery May Help Reduce Heart Disease

 

 

249001_517150311655291_934451022_nGreat news for people with osteoarthritis undergoing joint replacement surgery may significantly reduce the risk for a serious cardiovascular event, such as heart attack, stroke, coronary artery bypass surgery, angioplasty, congestive heart failure or death related to heart disease.

According to a new medical study, knee replacement surgery may cut the risk for heart attack and stroke by as much as 54 percent, while hip replacement can reduce the risk by 39 percent. Even patients who had at least one risk factor for heart disease, such as high blood pressure or diabetes, benefited. After joint replacement, they had a 29 percent decreased risk of developing a serious cardiovascular event.

The study was published in the November issue of BMJ, an international medical journal for physicians, and reported in stories featured in New York Times and Arthritis Today, a publication of the Arthritis Foundation. Physician researchers compared 153 people who had moderate to severe osteoarthritis and had undergone either a knee or hip replacement, against a second group of 153 people who also had osteoarthritis and were of similar age, income level, weight, smoking status and other factors. However, the second group did not receive joint replacement surgery. All the individuals were then studied over a seven year period.

Although researchers are quoted saying they are not entirely sure exactly why joint replacement offers protective benefits, they suspect it is related to a combination of factors. With the surgery eliminating the pain, stiffness and swelling of osteoarthritis, stress levels are reduced and there is greater interest in exercising and physical activity, which helps maintain healthy weight and fosters a more positive outlook. Patients are also less likely to be frequent, long-term users of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, which can cause side-effects, such as increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

If you or a loved one are searching for treatment options to help manage your symptoms from osteoarthritis, please call our office at 239-936-6778 to schedule a consultation. Or, for more information, go to www.kaganortho.com


New Study Shows Knee Replacement Surgery Offers Major Economic & Social Benefits

Orthopedic surgeons and patients have long known that knee replacement surgery offers tremendous help to people suffering from end-stage osteoarthritis of the knee. Now a new study sponsored by the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons confirms it.

“There is no doubt that knee replacement gets people back to work, improves their quality of life and allows them to be productive and active again, “ said John Tongue, M.D., the past president of the AAOS, in commenting about the study results. “But until now, that value has always been hard to quantify.”

Researchers looked at Medicare claims data, collected patient-reported outcomes and reviewed the literature to compare direct and indirect costs of surgical treatment versus non-surgical treatment. The result was a “quantitative look at the overall cost benefits of knee replacement relative to the societal and economic savings” or what Dr. Tongue calls “the big picture of how the procedure impacts patients’ lives, both daily and in the long-term.”

 

Photo Credit: anationinmotion.org

Photo Credit: anationinmotion.org

 

The study, published in the August 2013 issue Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery confirms that knee replacement surgery is a cost-effective treatment for people with end-stage osteoarthritis, giving patients an indirect savings of nearly $40,000. Researchers also calculated an estimated lifetime societal savings of about $12 billion from the more than 600,000 total knee replacement surgeries performed in the U.S. at the time of the study, which was in 2009.

Having the procedure allows patients to stay on the job and in the workforce longer. It also reduces absenteeism – the number of days that patients missed work due to pain – and it lowered the number of people who stopped working and applied for disability payments.

The study results are very positive for baby boomers, who are staying in the workforce longer and expecting to remain active throughout their lifetime, but their knee joints can’t always keep up, says Dr. Tongue. Now rather than cutting short their employment or giving up enjoyable physical activities like tennis and golf, they can turn to knee replacement as a viable, cost-effective option. Demand for the surgery is expected to exceed 3 million by 2030.

For more information about knee replacement surgery or other orthopedic-related concerns, visit www.kaganortho.com or call Dr. John Kagan at 239-936-6778.


Study Reported At AAOS Meeting Highlights Total Knee Success

 

 

shutterstock_137018378For people who suffer from the chronic, crippling pain of severe osteoarthritis in their knee, life can be a challenge. Even walking or getting out of the car can be difficult. The pain can be bad enough to be disabling, limiting patients’ ability to work or stay physically fit through biking, dancing, tennis, golf or swimming.

Over the past two decades, knee replacement has been the gold standard for relieving pain and restoring mobility. But not as much was known about how the surgery impacted younger active adults who were still working. Now a new study reported this past spring at the 2013 annual meeting of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons confirms the surgery’s benefits in all arenas of life.

The study, appropriately titled, “Do Patients Return to Work after Total Knee Arthroplasty?“ surveyed 660 patients ages 18 to 60 from one to three years after their surgery. The results? Ninety-eight percent of the patients were able to return to work, ranging from sedentary office jobs to those that involved heavy physical labor.

These results are impressive, especially since the AAOS reports that “more than one in four Americans have bone or joint health problems making these medical conditions the greatest cause of lost work days in the U.S.”

“We can now confirm that knee replacement is successful in keeping patients in the workforce and in preventing the pain and suffering that leads to loss of employment,” said the lead researcher in the study. “Returning patients back to work not only gives the patient a sense of fulfillment, but also is economically beneficial to society.”

Knee replacement is one of the most frequently performed procedures for chronic osteoarthritic pain in the knee. For more information about the surgery, or to schedule an appointment, call our office at 239-936-6778 or visit www.kaganortho.com/learn-more. 


Total Knee Replacement vs. Partial Knee Replacement or Resurfacing – What’s the Difference?

If pain and stiffness in your knees is starting to make getting around increasingly difficult, the first step is to consult with an orthopedic surgeon. After tests confirm a diagnosis of osteoarthritis, the next step is to discuss your options with the doctor.

You might be surprised to learn that thanks to advances in technology, there are new options that are available as an alternative to total knee replacement. Younger patients and those with less advanced disease may be good candidates for an innovative technique called partial knee replacement or partial knee resurfacing.

According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, “most patients report that a partial knee replacement feels more natural and that the knee may bend better” than with a total knee replacement.

Whether you qualify as a candidate for a partial knee will depend primarily on the extent of damage from osteoarthritis.

Anatomy of the Knee

The knee has three compartments – an inside or medial compartment; an outside or lateral compartment; and a front or patellar (the kneecap) compartment. In some patients, damage from osteoarthritis may affect only one or two compartments of the knee, rather than all three. And for these patients, a partial knee replacement may be a good choice.

A partial knee is a minimally invasive procedure that replaces only one or two compartments of the knee, leaving the cartilage, ligaments and bone in other areas of the knee that are healthy intact. Most of the time, it is the medial and patellar, rather than the lateral compartments that are replaced or resurfaced.

During the procedure, the surgeon removes the damaged cartilage, as well as some bone from the tibia and femur, (the upper and lower leg bones). Then the ends of the bones are reshaped to accept the new implant. 

In contrast, a total knee replacement removes damaged tissue from all three compartments of the knee — replacing the entire joint with artificial implants.

Advantages & Disadvantages

There are many advantages to partial knee replacement or resurfacing, including:

  • Smaller incisions
  • Less trauma to the body
  • Reduced blood loss
  • Shorter hospitalization
  • Faster recovery time
  • Less need for physical therapy
  • Gentle exercises at home and walking restore mobility

What are the disadvantages? The biggest concern is the potential for cartilage in the remaining compartments to deteriorate at some point in the future, which would then require additional surgery.

To find out whether you might be a candidate for partial knee replacement, call Dr. Kagan at 239-936-6778 or go to www.kaganortho.com. For a more detail explanation on how the procedure is performed, go to www.kaganortho.com/learn-more.


New Medical Study Finds Vitamin D Doesn’t Help Arthritic Knees

Taking vitamin D supplements does not stop the progression of osteoarthritis in the knees, according to a new medical study published this week in the Journal of American Medical Association.

Because of vitamin D’s importance to bone health, it was thought that it might alleviate the pain of osteoarthritis and reduce damage to the cartilage. But results of a two-year study showed this was not the case. Physicians at Boston’s Tufts Medical Center directed the randomized, placebo-controlled trail that evaluated 146 people with advanced osteoarthritis of the knee.

However, there are a number of nonsurgical treatment options, including hyaluronic injections, prolotherapy treatment and platelet rich plasma (PRP) that can help reduce discomfort and improve quality of life for people with chronic knee pain until joint replacement surgery becomes necessary. To learn about these options, go to www.kaganortho.com/learn-more.


What Is MIS Joint Replacement?

The trend toward bigger is better may apply in some areas of popular culture, but definitely not in the field of medicine, especially for joint replacement surgery.

MIS joint replacement is a minimally invasive surgical technique in which the surgical incision used to open the body is very tiny, just 2.5- to 3.5 inches. In contrast, traditional joint replacement surgery calls for a much larger incision – typically 12- to 14-inches.

But here’s the interesting twist. Whether the surgeon uses traditional surgery or a minimally invasive technique, the device used to replace the arthritic hip, knee or shoulder is always a full-size, traditional plastic or metal implant.

How is that possible? Technology.

Standard operating procedure calls for the surgeon to make a large incision and then retract the tissue, giving him a large surgical field in which to operate and insert the new artificial implant.

The new MIS technique uses a completely different approach. First, miniature specialized surgical instruments have been developed that are small enough to inset through a tiny incision.

Then, to overcome the restriction of a dramatically reduced surgical field, the specialized surgical instruments are equipped with a light source and video capability. Video images of the interior structure are sent in real-time to a monitor, giving the surgeon highly magnified 3D images of the operating field.

Performing minimally invasive surgery not only requires the right surgical instruments, it also takes training and certification to learn the surgical skills and manual dexterity required to become proficient in minimally invasive techniques.

In addition, the surgeon has to have a successful practice and track record that allows him to consistently perform the technique to keep his skills up to date and his surgical outcomes good.

Not everyone is a good candidate for MIS joint replacement. But the advantages of this new advance are extensive. The benefits include less blood loss, reduced trauma to the body, fewer days of hospitalization and faster overall recovery. Minimally invasive techniques are definitely a positive trend for the future of orthopedic care.

Want to find out more about minimally invasive techniques to treat joint pain? Go to www.kaganortho.com/learn-more. If you have chronic osteoarthritis that doesn’t respond to nonsurgical treatment, ask your doctor if you a good candidate for MIS joint replacement.

The trend toward bigger is better may apply in some areas of popular culture, but definitely not in the field of medicine, especially for joint replacement surgery.

MIS joint replacement is a minimally invasive surgical technique in which the surgical incision used to open the body is very tiny, just 2.5- to 3.5 inches. In contrast, traditional joint replacement surgery calls for a much larger incision – typically 12- to 14-inches.

But here’s the interesting twist. Whether the surgeon uses traditional surgery or a minimally invasive technique, the device used to replace the arthritic hip, knee or shoulder is always a full-size, traditional plastic or metal implant.

How is that possible? Technology.

Standard operating procedure calls for the surgeon to make a large incision and then retract the tissue, giving him a large surgical field in which to operate and insert the new artificial implant.

The new MIS technique uses a completely different approach. First, miniature specialized surgical instruments have been developed that are small enough to inset through a tiny incision.

Then, to overcome the restriction of a dramatically reduced surgical field, the specialized surgical instruments are equipped with a light source and video capability. Video images of the interior structure are sent in real-time to a monitor, giving the surgeon highly magnified 3D images of the operating field.

Performing minimally invasive surgery not only requires the right surgical instruments, it also takes training and certification to learn the surgical skills and manual dexterity required to become proficient in minimally invasive techniques.

In addition, the surgeon has to have a successful practice and track record that allows him to consistently perform the technique to keep his skills up to date and his surgical outcomes good.

Not everyone is a good candidate for MIS joint replacement. But the advantages of this new advance are extensive. The benefits include less blood loss, reduced trauma to the body, fewer days of hospitalization and faster overall recovery. Minimally invasive techniques are definitely a positive trend for the future of orthopedic care.

Want to find out more about minimally invasive techniques to treat joint pain? Go to www.kaganortho.com/learn-more. If you have chronic osteoarthritis that doesn’t respond to nonsurgical treatment, ask your doctor if you a good candidate for MIS joint replacement.

 


Going Home From The Hospital After Knee Surgery

If you or a family member will be having knee surgery, you might be wondering what to expect when you return home from the hospital. How much discomfort will you be in? Will you be able to get by without help or will you need someone to assist you? How soon will you get back to your regular activities?

Here is an overview of what you can expect for the first few days and weeks after your knee surgery.

1. You will definitely need someone to assist you at home – preferably a spouse or another family member who can stay with you around the clock for a while until you feel strong enough to manage on your own. Because you will not be able to drive a car for about six weeks, you will also need to rely on someone to take you back and forth to doctor appointments, to the grocery store or other errands.

2. Exercise is vital to recovery. Short walks are good and will strengthen the muscles in the upper and lower leg, while helping stabilize the knee joint. You will also be prescribed specific exercises to improve the range of motion and flexibility in your knee. A physical therapy may come to the house or you may go for therapy at the doctor’s office or outpatient center. Expect to use crutches or a walker at first to help you get around. And be sure to rest frequently and not overdo it at first.

3. Medication will be prescribed for pain control. It’s much easier to prevent the pain that to “chase it.” Take pain medication about 30 minutes before physical therapy. Ice packs and elevating the leg will help reduce swelling and discomfort. A footstool can be handy for elevating your leg.

4. For a few weeks, If you can avoid, sitting in chairs that are low to the ground, chairs without arms or overstuffed furniture. It will be difficult to pull yourself up and out of this type of furniture.

5. Expect to use crutches or a walker to help you get around at first. The doctor will let you know how soon you can put weight on the leg and knee that underwent the procedure. Always lead with your non-operated leg and knee first.

6. Don’t leave preparations to the last minute – get your home ready a week or so before surgery. Have the laundry done, the house cleaned, food shopping done and meals frozen and ready for when you need them.

7. Remove throw rugs and eliminate clutter, including moving furniture if necessary, to avoid tripping or falling when you get home.

8. Some final tips for when you do get home:

• Don’t attempt to carry anything. Attach a bag or basket to your walker to make it easier to carry small items. Slide items along the counter rather than picking them up and carrying them.
• To make showering easier, use a hand-held shower hose and be sure to place a non-skid rubber mat on the bottom of the shower stall or bathtub.
• Use liquid soap so you won’t have to worry about bending over to pick up a bar of soap if you drop it.
• Avoid climbing stairs. If you do have to use stairs, make sure there is a handrail to help you.
• Expect full recovery to take approximately six to eight weeks.

For more information, visit www.kaganortho.com.


When Is Knee Replacement Surgery The Right Decision?

If you have chronic knee pain caused by osteoarthritis, eventually, the progressive, degenerative nature of the disease may mean that surgery is the best solution to relieve pain and improve your quality of life. Surgery reshapes the damaged portion of bone caused by the wearing away of cartilage and replaces the joint with an artificial implant.

Even though knee replacement is a very common and successful surgery, making the decision to undergo this procedure is a very big step. How do you know when the time is right to make this important decision?

Many people think of knee replacement surgery as the last resort –that their knee pain must be bad enough to severely compromise their lifestyle before they agree to an operation. But today, most medical experts agree that there is no reason to live with chronic pain. When conservative treatment fails to help, it’s time to consider more permanent measures.

According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery, there are several important signs that you may be a good candidate for knee replacement surgery:

You have tried a variety of conservative, nonsurgical treatments, such as exercise, anti-inflammation and pain-relief medication, hot and cold therapy, and injections. However, these methods have failed to control the pain and improve your condition.

Knee pain wakes you up at night or prevents you from falling asleep.

You find that knee pain makes it nearly impossible to participate in recreational activities that you enjoy – golf, tennis, dancing, walking, shopping.

Knee pain makes performing every day activities, from getting out of bed or a chair to climbing the stairs or standing for very long, even to cook meals, painful and challenging.

Learning more about knee replacement surgery can help you make a better decision about whether it’s for you. Find out how it’s performed and what to expect at www.kaganortho.com/learn-more.


What is Knee Resurfacing?

Knee resurfacing is a new minimally invasive procedure that is a good alternative to total knee replacement. There are many advantages to knee resurfacing, including faster healing and return to an active lifestyle in just four to eight weeks, rather than 12 weeks for joint replacement surgery.

 Other benefits include:

Short hospital stay of just one to three days

A small incision

Only the damaged or arthritic parts of the knee are treated, rather than replacing the entire knee joint

 There are two types of knee resurfacing – partial knee resurfacing and full knee resurfacing. Which type is best for you will depend on the extent of your arthritis and the damage it has done to the cartilage, the fibrous tissue that cushions the bones and prevents them from rubbing together. In early stages of arthritis, only one side or compartment of the knee may be affected. For these patients, a partial knee resurfacing is usually recommended. Cartilage that is damaged on both sides of the knee will require a full knee resurfacing.

 During resurfacing, the surgeon will trim and reshape the ends of the bones, removing jagged edges or bony spurs caused by the arthritis. Then the damaged cartilage will be replaced with an implant, which is cemented into place on the reshaped bone.

 If your doctor has suggested you may need surgery to due to knee pain from arthritis, ask if you might be a candidate for resurfacing. For more information about joint resurfacing, go to http://www.kaganortho.com/learn-more/.


Partial Knee Replacement: A Less Invasive Option

If you’ve been diagnosed with osteoarthritis in just one part of the knee rather than the entire knee joint, you may be a candidate for a minimally invasive alternative – a partial rather than a total knee replacement.

Arthritis can develop in any of the three compartments of the knee – the medial, on the inside of the knee; the lateral, the outside; and the patellofemoral, the front of the knee between the kneecap and thighbone. During a partial knee replacement, only the diseased compartment is replaced with an artificial implant, while healthy cartilage, ligaments and bone are left in place.

What are the advantages to a partial knee replacement? There are several. Because the procedure is less invasive than a total knee replacement, there is less blood loss during the surgery and patients typically experience a faster recovery, with less swelling and less pain, making it easier to return to normal activities more quickly.

In addition, you may be able to bend their repaired knee more easily since a portion of natural tissue has been retained. However, there is one drawback – the potential for a total knee replacement in the future if arthritis develops in another part of the knee.

To determine if you are a good candidate, the doctor will perform a physical exam and order imaging tests that help identify the condition of the cartilage. To learn more about partial knee replacement and other treatments for arthritis, please call 239-936-6778 or visit www.kaganortho.com



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