At NJOI, we have seen a sharp rise in the number of patients coming to us for knee replacements. We appreciate the gratification we receive from watching those disabled by pain return to completely normal activity.
Many of those we see are seniors, still active and determined not to suffer from arthritis pain or other disabling conditions. Statistics bear this out: According to a nationwide analysis of Medicare beneficiaries, over the past two decades the number of seniors getting total knee replacements has rise by more than 161 percent.
When pain can no longer be relieved by physical therapy or medications, joint replacement procedures can provide the answer. And recent advances in knee replacement methods can provide more durable and thus longer-lasting prosthetics. Surgical methods these days also allow for less surgical complications and decreased recovery time.
Evidence indicates that joint replacement surgeries can help older Americans stay healthier longer by allowing them to move around and exercise with fewer aches.
A separate investigation, conducted by scientists from Harvard University, found that adults with osteoarthritis who undergo a total knee replacement might be able to decrease their chances for heart failure. Study authors felt that this connection was likely driven by the pain-relieving effects of the procedure which enabled the aging adult to more easily maintain his/her level of physical fitness.