Knee Replacement Surgery in India
The first knee replacement surgery was performed in the year 1968 and since then it has undergone various reformative stages finally making it one of the most successful medical procedures. Also known as total knee replacement or knee arthroplasty, knee replacement surgery is conducted to replace a knee that has been damaged either due to arthritis or a major injury.
When medications and other sorts of superficial treatments fail to relieve you from the pain then that is the time when you should consider knee replacement surgery. It is the best option to relieve you from the long time chronic knee pain, correcting the deformity in the leg and letting you carry on with your normal activities.
The basic procedure involves replacing the damaged knee with metal and plastic parts that are attached with the end of the bones that forms the joints along with the knee cap.
Types of Arthritis That Affects The Knees
There are three main types of Arthritis that affects the knees, damaging them to the level of disability.
- Osteoarthritis – Commonly found in people who are 50+ in age, this type of arthritis mostly occurs due to the years of use of the knee joints. The cartilage that cushions the knee bones starts getting fragile and then wears away. The bones without the cover of cartilage start rubbing to each other… the reason for all that chronic knee pain and stiffness.
- Rheumatoid arthritis – Also called as “inflammatory arthritis” is caused due to the inflammation in synovial membrane that engulfs the joint. The inflammation eventually damages the cartilage leading to pain and stiffness.
- Post-traumatic arthritis – This type of arthritis is mainly caused due to a severe knee injury. Fractures in the bone that are around the knee area might damage the articular cartilage during the course of time resulting into knee pain and restricted functioning of knee.
Knee Replacement Procedure
Knee replacement has got another name to its bucket and that is knee “surfacing”. It is called so because of the procedure that mainly involves replacing the surface of the bones.
Four basic steps in knee replacement procedure are-
- Prepare the bone – The first step is to remove the damaged cartilage along with a minor part of underlying bone that is found near the femur and tibia.
- Positioning the implants – When the damaged cartilage is removed, it is replaced by metal or ceramic implants which are cemented or “press-fit” into the bone.
- Resurface the kneecap – This step is not mandatory and depends on the type of case being dealt. In this step the underside of the patella, commonly known as knee cap is cut and resurfaced.
- Place in a spacer – To create a smooth flexible surface, a medically-approved plastic spacer is placed in between the metal components.
In your appointment with an orthopedic surgeon you will have to go through following tests:
- Complete medical history – The surgeon will enquire about your general health and will ask you questions related to your knee pain and how it is affecting your everyday activities.
- Proper knee examination – The surgeon will assess the movement of your knees, strength, stability and the leg alignment.
- X-ray – This is the most important test in assessing the limit of damage and deformity that your knees are suffering with.
- Other types of tests – Some tests such as blood test or MRI scan are conducted on the patient to further determine the damage in the bones and tissues of the knees.
Before The Procedure
- Firstly, your doctor will make you aware of the complete procedure right from starting till the end. Further your enquiries will be properly answered so as to remove any doubt that you have regarding the surgery.
- You will be provided with a consent form that you need to go through in a proper manner and then put your signature on it. During the form filling process you can clarify any questions or doubts if you have.
- Your surgeon might prescribe you complete physical examination or other diagnostic tests before undergoing the surgery so as to monitor the complete medical stats of your body.
- You will be required to fast for around eight hours which mostly starts after midnight.
- Prior to the procedure you will be injected with a sedative that will help you in relaxing.
- Other specific preparations might be suggested to you by the doctor based on your medical condition.
During The Procedure
The surgery lasts somewhere between one to three hours. The patient will be induced with a spinal or general anesthesia to make the projected area numb. During the surgery the doctor starts by making a fine incision in the knee area after which the replacement procedure starts.
The first step is to remove the surfaces of the knee joint that are affected due to the damage, after which the knee joint is resurfaced with the support of prosthesis. The knee prosthetics used during the surgery are mainly of three types- plastic, metal and ceramic. It depends on the requirement as to which type of implant will be used. The prosthetics are set in either using the cemented fixation or an uncemented fixation.
Cost of Knee Replacement Surgery in India
The average cost of knee replacement surgery in India ranges somewhere in between $5500 USD to $7500 USD.
Knee replacement surgery is considerably a major medical procedure which takes time to completely recover. During the initial few days or weeks the patient will experience pain or discomfort. But after some time as the patient resumes with its everyday physical activities and exercises prescribed by the doctor, the pain is likely to subside.