Total Joint Replacement
A total or partial replacement of the knee, hip, shoulder or other joint helps restore mobility and improve quality of life, however over time the artificial devices implanted can become loose, worn or infected. Revision procedures can vary from minor adjustments to major operations replacing the entire artificial joint.
Baptist Health is nationally recognized for excellence in joint replacement revision surgery. We offer a full spectrum of orthopedic care and the latest approaches to joint replacement revision surgery. Best of all, you will appreciate convenient appointment times, locations near you and a personalized focus to meet your needs before, during and after your procedure.
What is a Total Joint Replacement Revision?
Total joint replacement revision is a procedure to adjust or replace one or more prosthetic components from a previous joint replacement procedure.
Joint replacement procedures consist of one or more artificial implants made of metal, plastic or ceramic that replace part or all of your knee, hip, shoulder or other joint. The implants may be held in place with a fast-curing medical cement, or be a press fit prosthetic that is made to promote new bone growing around the implant to stabilize it. When an implant component becomes loose or worn and needs revision, the new implant may have a sturdier design that helps achieve greater stabilization, but may also require the removal of additional bone and use of an artificial bone graft substance to stabilize the prosthesis.
Will I Need a Joint Replacement Revision?
Because joint replacements wear over time, they sometimes require revision. The likelihood of needing a revision will depend on which joint has been replaced and your age, health and activity levels. Five to 10 percent of joint replacements require some type of revision within 10 years, and 15 to 20 percent of joint replacements require some type of revision within 20 years. Your orthopedist may recommend follow-up visits every one to two years after your initial recovery to check for loosening or other issues.
What Can a Joint Replacement Revision Accomplish?
A joint replacement revision is recommended for people who have had joint replacement surgery and begin to experience increasing levels of pain and stiffness or decreased range of motion or mobility after their initial recovery. This procedure may also be needed to treat more serious infections that may develop after the initial surgery. A joint replacement revision is recommended to:
- Enhance comfort and mobility
- Relieve stiffness or pain
- Improve strength
- Increase stability
- Deliver freedom of movement
- Remove infection
What Can I Expect During the Procedure?
Once you are admitted for your joint revision surgery, a member of the anesthesia team will meet with you to explain the type of anesthesia that will be used to make you comfortable during the procedure. The procedure may take under an hour, or it may take several hours depending on the complexity of the surgery. Your surgeon will remove any worn or loose implants, along with any damaged bone, cartilage or infected tissue. The bone surfaces are then prepared, and the surgeon will rebuild the joint using components that have been specially sized to fit you, and potentially synthetic bone grafting material. These components will be carefully aligned to your bone. Incisions will be closed using stitches, stables or surgical adhesive.
You will typically be in the hospital one to two days after surgery. To protect against swelling or blood clots, you may wear special support or compression devices and be given blood thinning medication. You will be shown how to flex and move your extremities to prevent blood clots and begin the healing process. A physical therapist will show you exercises to improve the strength and mobility of your new joint to aid in your recovery.
Estimated Recovery Timeline
Once home, it is important to follow all instructions about exercise, physical activity and wound care in order to successfully recover. Recovery will depend on the joint being revised and complexity of the surgery as well as your age, health and physical condition. While most people resume normal activities within three months, your doctor will explain when you can resume activities like driving and going back to work. In general, people recover to their fullest potential extent three to six months after surgery.
Total Joint Replacement Revision Possible Risks
Any surgery carries risk, but a joint replacement revision is typically a safe and effective procedure to repair failing total joint prosthetics. You will be given instructions about how to avoid these specific risks after your total joint replacement revision surgery:
- Blood clots
Joint replacements can wear out. To take good care of your new joint, avoid high-impact activities and weight gain. Avoid tobacco use before and after surgery as it does interfere with bone and skin healing.
Next Steps with MyChart
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