Total Joint Replacement: When Should You Consider It?

sports medicine torontoA total joint replacement is an artificial system that replaces a certain part of the body that no longer functions or gives too much pain to the individual when used. The most common joint replacement systems are for the hip and the knee as these obtain some of the most wear and tear throughout an individual’s lifespan. This system is considered a prosthetic and is made out of two parts known as the fossa and condyle. These parts act as a ball and socket, which makes up the entire structure. It is mainly used as a way for an individual to retain or get back total function of a joint which has been worn down.

When and Why You Would Want One
An individual should consider a total joint replacement if they have a condition that has completely degenerated their joints. For instance, diseases such as Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, or traumas that have resulted in significant destruction of a joint, hip fractures, developmental abnormalities, will often cause an individual to seek a joint replacement. Keep in mind that a joint replacement requires adequate therapy before and after the surgery to obtain optimal results. When considering which option fits you best, it is wise to contact a professional in sports medicine in Toronto or in your local area and set up an appointment to get a better assessment with respect to your preoperative and postoperative physical rehabilitation.

The recovery time for a total joint replacement varies among individuals; however full daily activity is usually resumed in and around the four to six week mark. However, it can take several months to get used to the new joint as there are side effects such as swelling, tingling and sometimes paralysis during the recovery time. If you are still working, the time required off work will vary anywhere between 4 and 10 weeks or longer depending on how physically demanding your job is. Appropriate rehabilitation before and after your surgery will minimize your down time.  Once work is resumed it may need to resumed by a gradual transition.

It is common in sports medicine in Toronto, for individuals to get total joint replacements only when it is the last option available. There are many avenues of treatment prior to reaching this point in the breakdown of a joint including the use of oral supplements such as glucosamine and chondroitin, joint injections such as Hyaluronic Acid, and cortisone. Participating in appropriate physical rehabilitation is also important. These measures help reduce pain and maintain function, activity and health.