The average lifespan of North Americans has increased steadily (with a few minor dips) over the last century. Considering individuals are living longer, doctors are now faced with treating a host of new issues which were previously not common. A longer lifespan means the various parts of the body can wear out before an individual dies, leading to joint replacements. Of all the joints which can be replaced, the knee is the most common subject of total replacement. Before one gets a total knee replacement, however, there are a number of factors which must be taken into consideration.
Lifestyle Changes May Relieve Knee Issues
Many individuals needlessly believe they require a knee replacement when their knee pain and issues can be resolved through other means. Certain lifestyle changes can relieve chronic knee pain and arthritis without the need for costly and risky total replacements. Losing weight, increasing one’s level of physical activity, or even getting a pair of orthotic shoe inserts can sometimes relieve the pain and discomfort individuals experience in their knees. While total knee replacements can also resolve these issues, they should be a last resort – not a first option.
Keep reading to learn the risks associated with knee replacement surgery.