Our joints can be vulnerable to a number of conditions – everything from sports injuries to arthritis. Damaged joints are not just painful, they can severely impact your lifestyle.
Joint reconstruction can be an effective solution to reduce chronic pain and restore your mobility, getting you back to doing the activities you enjoy. Let’s talk about some of the main factors surrounding joint reconstruction surgery and who can help you with your joint pain.
What Is Joint Reconstruction Surgery?
If joint reconstruction has been recommended to you by your orthopedist, you may wonder what exactly that means. These days, total joint reconstruction surgery can actually be performed on an outpatient basis, so you can go home later the same day of the surgery barring no infections or other irregularities.
This operation is performed to repair and restore full function to the joint by replacing the injured tissues with artificial (prosthetic) components and materials. The surgeon will always do their best not to disturb nearby tissues.
Joint reconstruction may be required following a sports injury or for advanced arthritis. It can be performed on many joints in the body, but the knee, hip, and shoulder are the most common joints to have this type of surgery.
Am I a Candidate for Joint Reconstruction Surgery?
Joint reconstruction surgery is recommended if you have had a significant joint injury, if your mobility in the joint has become severely reduced, or if your chronic joint pain has not responded to conservative treatment methods. Surgery can offer pain relief or a permanent solution to a joint disorder.
With new advancements in medicine and technology, replacement joints have a longer life expectancy than ever before. However, the younger you are, the more likely it is that you will eventually require further surgery down the line to replace the joint again (which is called joint revision surgery).
Discuss the options with your orthopedic doctor. The type of treatment that is best for you will depend on the extent of joint damage, your usual activity level, your age, and your overall health.
What Is Involved in a Minimally Invasive Operation?
Thanks to breakthrough innovations in the medical industry, many joint reconstruction surgeries can now be performed in a minimally invasive manner – meaning less blood loss during surgery, shorter recovery times, smaller scars, and fewer complications. These procedures utilize state-of-the-art tools to replace a joint, and the patient can often move the joint – such as standing up and walking after a knee replacement – within hours after surgery. They are often able to drive again in as little as one week.
Robotic surgery is also available for some patients, which offers doctors greater precision, control, and dexterity during the surgery. The surgeon can customize your partial or total joint replacement based on your unique anatomy.
What Is the Recovery Process Like?
Any type of surgery can take its toll physically, and recovery from joint reconstruction surgery can take time. As with all forms of surgery there are possible risks and complications, including complications that can develop over time after your recovery. However, by following your doctors’ and physical therapists’ advice and guidelines post-surgery, you can ensure the best possible outcome.
Rehabilitation is a key component following joint replacement surgery in order to help your body adjust to the new joint, and to regain strength and mobility in the area. It can include a combination of physical therapy stretches, exercises, massage (manual therapy), and other treatment modalities.
Physical therapy aims to help speed up the healing process, and to strengthen the muscles surrounding the new joint to ensure full support of the joint. Effective rehabilitation can reduce recovery time and the chance of problems in the future. Your continued active participation in the rehabilitation process is essential to help your new joint to continue working beautifully.
Are There Any Limitations Following Surgery?
Many of your former activities can be resumed following your recovery, but you may have to modify the way you do some of the activities initially – such as bending down following hip surgery, or restricting arm movements following shoulder surgery. Depending on the type of joint replacement, your surgeon may restrict you when doing certain movements and activities such as lifting, driving, or taking part in sports.
These recommended restrictions may last for weeks, and some activities may need to be avoided for the rest of your life in order to preserve your new joint – such as jogging following hip replacement surgery. Stress on the artificial joint can cause it to wear out quicker or to become loose. You will be advised which activities are safe for you to do.
Joint Reconstruction Surgery in Macomb County
If you have debilitating joint pain, or if you are considering joint reconstruction surgery, contact the medical team here at Movement Orthopedics. Our board-certified orthopedic surgeon Dr. Jeffrey Carroll has many years of experience, and he is dedicated to providing patients with individualized care to provide relief from their musculoskeletal pain.
We offer joint reconstruction surgery on an outpatient basis, allowing a faster recovery and fewer restrictions on activity after surgery. We also offer physical therapy services on-site.
If you would like to schedule an appointment, or if you would like more information about our orthopedic services, please call our office today at (586) 436-3785, or you can use our secure online appointment request form. We look forward to helping you get back to feeling and functioning like yourself again.