According to the American College of Rheumatology, there are almost 800,000 knee replacements performed each year. If you’ve been experiencing knee problems recently, you might want to explore the idea of going through the knee replacement process.
There are a lot of reasons for knee replacements. For example, if you’re experiencing arthritis in one of your knees, knee replacement surgery might be the only way to correct this issue.
Before you schedule a total knee replacement, though, you should look into some of the knee replacement alternatives. You may be able to avoid needing to have a knee replacement done by taking advantage of them.
So, what are some of the best alternatives to knee replacement? We’re going to walk you through a few of them today. Continue reading to see the things you should try prior to putting yourself through the knee replacement process.
The Best Knee Replacement Alternatives
If you’ve reached the point where you can’t walk because you’re experiencing so much knee pain, the knee replacement alternatives that we’re going to break down for you might not do the trick. But if you’re experiencing occasional knee pain that feels like it might be getting worse over time, that’s when you’ll want to try out some alternatives to knee replacement.
Here are several of the knee replacement alternatives that should be on your radar.
According to the CDC, a large percentage of Americans fall into either the overweight or obese category. If you’re one of them, that could be one of the many reasons why you’re dealing with knee pain right now.
In an attempt to get rid of any knee pain you might be feeling, you should try to lose some weight. Even losing just 10 or 20 pounds could work wonders for your knee pain and make it go away.
This is usually one of the first knee replacement alternatives that doctors will suggest. They’ll try to see whether or not you’re able to get your knee pain under control by shedding a few pounds.
The only downside to trying to lose weight when you’re having knee problems is that these problems could prevent you from working out ad losing weight in this way. You might have to focus more on making changes to your diet to lose weight versus exercising to do it.
If you’re doing battle with knee pain at the moment, you might struggle to do a lot of exercises. Your knee pain isn’t always going to make it possible for you to work out as hard as you might want to.
There are, however, some low-impact exercises that you can try to stop knee pain in its tracks. It would be worth testing out low-impact exercises like:
Each of these exercises for knee pain will help you lose some weight and get your body back into better shape without putting too much strain on your knees. It would be well worth trying them out to see if they can provide you with some much-needed pain relief.
When you’re dealing with your fair share of knee pain, you might be tempted to load up on non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, better known as NSAIDs, all the time. NSAIDs like aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen can help you manage your knee pain more effectively.
But you should shy away from taking NSAIDs every day for extended periods of time. This could do damage to everything from your stomach to your liver if you aren’t careful.
You might want to check in with your doctor to see which knee pain medication they would recommend. You should also ask them how often you should take medication for your knee pain to make sure you aren’t overdoing it and possibly doing more harm than good.
If you’re unable to get rid of knee pain with NSAIDs, your doctor might tell you that you’ll need to consider taking things to the next level. There are knee injections that you can get to relieve the knee pain and stiffness you’re feeling.
Cortisone injections have become very popular over time among those working their way through knee problems. Hyaluronic acid injections have also been shown to help lubricate the knee joint and prevent pain.
Many people respond well to these types of knee injections. But the relief they can provide isn’t going to last forever. You’ll still need to come up with a long-term solution for your knee pain to stop it from coming back for good.
When to Consider Knee Replacement
As you work your way through the different knee replacement alternatives, you might find that they’ll set you up with the relief you’ve looking for. But you might also discover that they aren’t taking your knee pain away for very long. This is when you might want to begin to consider the idea of having a knee replacement procedure done.
There are also other signs that will indicate that alternatives to knee replacement aren’t going to cut it for you. These signs may include:
- Your knee almost always looks swollen and feels stiff because of it
- Your knee hurts even when you’re sitting down and resting
- Your knee is starting to hurt more than it used to
- Your knee isn’t responding well to medications and/or injections
- Your knee is preventing you from leading a more active lifestyle
If you spot any of these signs, it’ll typically mean it’s time to schedule a consultation for a knee replacement. You might need to have surgery performed on your knee within the next few months to put a knee replacement in place so that you can get back to living a more fulfilling life. You can take a look at traditional methods, but a MAKO procedure may extend the life of your knee replacement.
Contact Us for All Your Knee Replacement Needs
Have you tried a lot of the knee replacement alternatives that we talked about here and seen little to no positive results? We would love to set you up with a consultation so that you can see if a knee replacement procedure would be right for you.
Reach out to The Joint Replacement Center today to make an appointment so that you can start to work on making your knee pain disappear.