In a long medical career I have found that people faces a lot of trouble in the post surgery period. However, most of the knee replacements surgeries are recorded as successful one. There are only few cases where it has been found that there are some complications related with the knee replacement operations. Broadly, the complication can be classified into two different categories. These are short-term complication and long-term complications. We will discuss both the problems on by one.
Short terms problems are the problems, which are negligible one and are settled within a few weeks. Here are certain examples of the following:
Pain: Once the patient comes out of the anaesthesia, he or she may feel some amount of sore around the place of operational scar. In order to keep the pain in control doctors usually give pain relief medicines. It is always advisable to follow the medications that are prescribed by the doctors and not to manage anything except that. In order to keep the pain in control the patients can do the lighter exercises also. However, within few week patients likely to feel better as they do not have to fight with arthritis anymore and can move the knees freely.
Numbness: Patients often feels numb around the scar. The reason is that due to operation few of the nerves that are related with feeling are being cut. It takes nearly a year or more to heal the nerves completely. Thus until it will be completely solved the patient may feel the numbness in that area.
Swelling: It is one of the very common problems faced by the patients. In the post operative period swelling around the knee is usually happens and to reduce it the bandages are tied around it. Once the operative bandages are removed, the patient can use the tubigrip compression bandages around the knee to support it. Keeping the leg elevated helps to drain the excess fluid from the knee and reduce the swelling. Applying the ice therapy can be another effective measure to get rid of the swelling. There are different types of ice therapy that can be used such as cryo cuffs generally used in hospitals.
In addition there are certain long-term complications are also there of knee replacement surgery. There are following:
Wearing the prosthetics can be one of the long-term problems that people usually faces. It has been seen that the knee replacement surgery last nearly 20 years from the operation. However, the timing may differ from patient to patient depending on the age and other specifications.
It has found that there are nearly 1.4% of the people have to do a total replacement which is known as revision knee replacement. Else, people can be relived through the partial knee replacement surgery also.
Another long-term complication of knee replacements is any kind of infection at the knee joints. Fortunately, the chance of infection in case of the knee replacement is very rare. There are three different classification can be done of the knee infection based on the time from the surgical period. These are Early that occurs within a timeframe of three months from the operation, Delayed that occurs within three months to less than a year and Late, that are happened after a year from the surgery.
Early infection mostly occurs due to microorganisms that enter the body during operation. The common traits of the infection is swelling, fever effusion etc.
Delayed infections have the same symptoms as of the early infections. It is also caused of the microorganisms while doing the operation.
Late infections are mostly happens due to haematogenous situation means are infected from the other parts of the body. Ion this kind of infection the bacteria come from the other places such as dental area, pneumonia, urinary infections etc that travel through the blood. In order avoid such kind of infection doctors generally advice the patient to take antibiotics at the pre operative stage. However, doctors test the infected blood and culture that to heal the problem.
In addition to these complications, there can be other complications also such as forming clots of blood in the vain, damage of blood vessel or the nerves etc. Other common complications are congestive heart failure, hyperglycaemia, haemorrhage, Edema etc. Instability of ligaments, stiffness of joints, problems related to track the platella are some of the other complications that can rise at the post operation period. Therefore, it is advisable to the patients that if they found anything unnatural after the operative period they must visit their doctor without loosing any time further.