A knee replacement involves removing the worn joint surfaces from the top end of the shin bone and the bottom end of the thigh bone and sometimes the under surface of the knee cap. Metal and plastic components are cemented into the bone to fill the gap.
The operation is performed under a general anaesthetic or a spinal anaesthetic. Supplementary local anaesthetic blocks to the major nerves to the knee and the tissues surrounding the knee are also provided to provide post-operative pain relief.
The operation takes approximately 60 minutes.
Before and After
You will be called for a pre-operative assessment ( health check ) a week or so prior to the operation.
You will also attend a physiotherapy class where you are given information on what to expect afterwards. The physiotherapist and occupational therapist will arrange for any appliances required to enhance your recovery. You will normally be in hospital approximately five days after a knee replacement.
Generally speaking you will need 2-3 months off sick from work following the operation to allow you to recuperate.