A joint replacement is a surgical procedure that replaces a person's own joint with a prosthesis, or artificial joint. It is performed by an orthopedic surgeon. Joint replacements are often necessary in injured or arthritic joints.
Reasons for Joint Replacements :
Joint replacements relieve pain in damaged or arthritis joints. They also increase the range of motion available in joints. Initially exercise, strengthening, and stretching techniques are performed to decrease joint pain and increase joint range of motion. However, if significant relief of pain and disability is not achieved, a joint replacement is an important consideration to improve function of life.
Type of Joint Replacement:
Shoulders, hips, and knees are the most common sites of joint replacements. In these joints, a metal prosthesis is used to create an artifical joint that will function like the original joint.
Joint Replacement Recovery:
Physical therapy will play an important role in recovering from a joint replacement. Strengthening and stretching the new joint are important initial treatments. Also, learning to walk and climb stairs with a cane or walker initially is of importance when healing from a knee or hip replacement. With time, the new joint will feel better than it did prior to the surgery.