The Pros & Cons Of Joint Replacement Surgery – Flexiseq

The Pros & Cons Of Joint Replacement Surgery

Living with osteoarthritis can be challenging, especially when it impacts your life and the things you love to do the most. Joint replacement surgery is a common treatment option for people experiencing severe pain and decreased joint function due to osteoarthritis. While this surgery can significantly improve quality of life, it's essential to weigh the pros and cons before making a decision. Below are some things to consider when it comes to joint replacement surgery.

PLEASE NOTE: For some people, after years of trying other therapies, medicines and other interventions, joint replacement surgery may be the final option to regain their joint function. Hopefully this article will reassure you of the benefits it can have. If you have questions please speak with your healthcare professionals about your specific needs.

PRO: Pain Relief and Joint Function

One of, if not the biggest pro to having joint replacement surgery is it will, if all goes to plan, remove the pain from that joint and restore its mobility. By replacing the damaged joint with an artificial one, patients can experience a significant reduction or elimination of pain, allowing them to regain mobility and enjoy a better quality of life.

CON: Rehabilitation & Recovery

As with any form of surgery there is a period of recovery after joint replacement surgery. But crucially there can also be an extensive period of rehabilitation to allow your body to adjust to the new joint. During this period you can experience increased pain, sometimes greater than the pain you were experiencing prior to the surgery. What is key to remember; you have to commit to this period of recovery and rehab, doing as your healthcare professionals instruct at this time can greatly help achieve the best possible outcomes from their surgery and hopefully get back to the life they had prior to the impact of joint pain.

PRO: Improved Mobility

For many the main point of joint replacement surgery is to overcome the painful life they are experiencing. It’s often easy to overlook that with a new joint you will find an increase in mobility of that joint. This in turn can allow you to get back to doing some of the things that over the course of your joint pain experience have become too hard. This can range from taking long walks to being able to enjoy social functions now that you are able to get there with more ease. In short, finding this improved mobility can greatly help you regain some of that independence that might have been lost due to joint pain.

CON: Limited Lifespan of Implants

While there have been significant advancements in the science of joint replacements nothing lasts forever. Over time, and we can sometimes be talking decades, the replaced joint can begin to experience wear and tear and can need replacing. This can often involve further surgery and another period of recovery and rehabilitation. For this reason you may choose to see if you can find other ways of managing joint pain, be it through a new exercise regime or, as we have heard from Irene Goddard, using something like drug-free FlexiSEQ to help keep joint pain at bay in the hope it can prolong joint replacement surgery for as long as possible.

CON: Body Adjustments

It might seem strange but for many people living with arthritis they will have found ways to manage on a daily basis. This can range from muscles developing to help compensate while other muscles may have seen reduction in strength through being used less. This is why the period of rehabilitation can be of huge importance.

PRO: Reduced Medication Dependency

For many people living with joint pain and osteoarthritis they can be in so much pain that they have become reliant on potentially harmful over the long term pain medication such as ibuprofen or paracetamol. Embarking on joint replacement surgery can, in the long run at least, help you significantly reduce the need for these medications and in many cases stop using them entirely. According to the New England Advanced Orthopaedics "Many people are able to reduce or eliminate their need for pain medications after a successful total knee replacement, as there is a significant reduction in pain." By addressing the underlying cause of the pain, surgery can decrease or eliminate the need for long-term medication use, thereby reducing the risk of potential side effects and dependency.

CON: Time Off Work

As previously mentioned, joint replacement surgery will entail a period of recovery and rehabilitation. For those who are still working this time can often be weeks and potentially even months. So if you are still in employment this can mean a significant time away from work which in some cases can impact earnings. If you are concerned about this it’s best to speak directly with your employer and your healthcare professionals about what is doable to ensure you’re able to return to work in some capacity as soon as possible. The key thing is to not rush back as you might find this can lead to an even longer time off work if you do damage as a result.

PRO: Better Sleep

Living with chronic pain experienced when you have a condition like osteoarthritis can impact every aspect of your life, and in many cases this involves sleep. When it comes to sleep and pain it can become a vicious cycle, the more pain you have the less sleep you get and when you’re tired and run down pain can increase. In many cases undergoing joint replacement surgery can reduce this everyday pain, once past the recovering stage, to allow you to start to get back into a good sleeping routine and sleep through the night without being woken by painful joints.

For most people undergoing joint replacement surgery for conditions such as osteoarthritis can have huge benefits to it. However, it is important to make an informed decision based on how you feel, what your healthcare professionals are telling you and how a period of recovery can impact your life.

Have you had joint replacement surgery? Do you have any tips or advice for those considering it or needing it? Let us know on Facebook.

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