Get Help With A Failed Knee Replacement Utilizing Knee Decompression & PEMF Therapy
The best way to stop from having issues from a failed knee replacement is to not get a replacement in the first place. You can do this by keeping your joints healthy, strong, and avoiding any traumatic events. The knee joint is the strongest joint in the body and its responsibility is to support the weight of the entire body while also withstanding the daily stress that we put our bodies through over a lifetime.
Running through the park as children, the multiple sports played until teenage or adulthood, the 5Ks and marathons run for great causes, the countless falls, the hikes through the wilderness, and the infinite number of stairs climbed can be considered normal for most people. Unfortunately, all of these activities can lead to the knee joint being pounded and stressed in order to carry you on these fun and exciting journeys.
The good news is, research shows that 82 percent of patients that have had the surgery will have a positive result. The knee joint is still working as designed 25 years later. If you're in the 18 percent that have issues, there's help to get you back to your normal activities again.
What Leads To The Need For A Knee Replacement?
The knee joint relies on the articular cartilage, joint space fluid, and meniscus for support. Those materials keep the knee joint functional and healthy. But overtime, with a number of injuries and overuse stress throughout the span of a person’s life, the knee starts to wear and tear until the degenerative process starts to take place.
At some point, in no particular order, the articular cartilage that covers the bone starts to fray and break, the fluid starts to dry up, and the meniscus starts to tear and break down. Eventually the bone will rub on the other bone creating a grinding sensation.
Throughout the process, a person experiences knee pain with or without movement, the joint swells with activity, there is decreased motion and function, difficulty walking, then a decrease in activities of daily living. With all of these things eventually happening all at once, some type of treatment has to happen in order to live a normal life.
The Decision To Get A Knee Replacement Surgery
The decision to get a knee replacement has to be a very nervous decision to make. A moment where you are facing a surgeon who is describing a procedure where they will remove a part of the bone in your leg and replace it with an artificial one. This nervousness is likely soon replaced with eagerness and excitement with the thought that the pain and other symptoms you have been experiencing in the knee will be gone for good, or hope that’s the case.
While most knee replacements function well for many years, there are times when there is failure of the replacement. No one wants to think about their replacement failing but this is a common event. This doesn't mean that the surgeon made any mistakes, there are a lot of things that can go wrong that are out of the surgeon’s hands once you start living your normal life with a prosthetic in your leg.
What Leads To A Failed Knee Replacement?
Below, we’ll talk about knee replacement failures and some treatment options available to prevent knee surgeries in the first place. There are many ways that will be outlined and described below that can cause a knee replacement to fail.
Listed complications behind knee replacement failures:
Increased pain - Likely the most common reason to get a knee replaced is the decrease in pain. Pain hinders the activities of daily living. The more pain you’re in the less fun you have doing the active things you enjoy.
Decreased function - This involves being less active because your knee won’t functionally allow you to do them. There is no plan for a hiking trip if you can’t walk well. It’s also less likely that someone will go and see their favorite team play if climbing stairs/ ramps at the stadium are a problem.
Joint instability - The feeling like your knee will “give out” when walking. The ligaments and tendons aren’t replaced. They are reattached to the new prosthetic. If the ligaments and tendons become weak, the knee is not stable enough to hold your weight.
Joint stiffness - Decreased range of motion will limit your ability to be mobile and eventually cause compensation to other structures creating joint/muscular imbalances.
Implant wearing - Overtime an implant can start to wear and become defective. The same surface that the bone the implant is anchored to can also start to wear. In these cases, the prosthetic can become loose in the and cause instability. Especially in situations where there is high levels of activity or increased stress on the replaced knee due to being overweight. Most surgeons will insist that a patient be at a certain weight before a knee replacement surgery is performed to prevent premature wearing of the implant.
Infection/Blood Clots/Fractures - Infection post surgical is also a common side effect of surgery, especially with implanting a foreign object. Infections can show up days to years after a surgery. Blood clots can form in the vessels following a major surgery. Compression sleeves are often recommended to prevent clots. Fractures can also occur to bones where the implants are located. In these cases, the symptoms should encourage you to seek medical help immediately and likely lead to emergency surgery.
What Can You Do If You Have A Failed Knee Replacement?
Options of treatment for those patients with a failed knee replacement include:
Stretching and strengthening exercises - As with any injury, especially after a surgery, a rehabilitation program is important to get proper range of motion back into the joint and strength back into the muscles of the leg.
Chiropractic adjustments - adjustments to the pelvis utilizing a personalized chiropractic care program will help balance the pelvis which in turn allows an even distribution of weight to be placed in both knees. This eliminates the chance for muscle imbalances and wearing of the replacement due to abnormal stress.
Knee decompression therapy - knee decompression is a treatment that helps reduce pain, increase function, and promote healing. It is done by mechanically stretching the thigh bone and the shin bone, taking pressure off the structures between the two. It can be done typically one year following a knee surgery.
PEMF therapy - patients typically see a big difference in pain levels, inflammation levels, and an overall decrease in the spasms and tightness around the knee following PEMF therapy sessions. This therapy is very comfortable, and works best when done consistently. PEMF sessions tend to build on each other, leading to a cumulative effect over time that leads to longer periods of time with decreased symptoms.
Revision surgery - In many of these cases when a knee replacement has already failed, a second surgery is warranted. The risks are usually higher regarding infections, but the revisional surgery itself should yield better function.
Don't continue to suffer with a failed knee replacement and allow it to affect your daily activities.
Let CORE Chiropractic help you get back on track with personalized chiropractic care, knee decompression therapy, stretching & exercise recommendations, PEMF therapy and a custom treatment plan. Call today for your consultation, or schedule an appointment online.