This post is part of The Ultimate Guide to Total Knee Replacement
If you’re dealing with a painful condition like knee arthritis you may be wondering, do I need a knee replacement?
If you’re experiencing knee pain while simply walking to your car, doing some gardening or even sitting or lying down, you may need to see a knee specialist.
Read on to learn about surgical and non-surgical options for treating knee pain, and what to expect if you need knee replacement surgery.
When to see a doctor for knee pain
If you are experiencing one or more of the following symptoms, you may want to make an appointment with a total joint specialist to find out if knee replacement is necessary, or if there are non-surgical treatment options that can work for you.
- Pain during activity
- Pain in your knee that heightens with activity and lessens with rest
- Delayed knee pain
- Pain that comes on after activity and lasts for a few days
- Pain that interrupts sleep
- Knee pain is keeping you up at night or wakes you up during sleep
- Your knee becomes looser and feels like it’s “giving way” and could cause you to fall
- Your knee X-rays show bone touching bone somewhere in the knee
- Limited knee movement
- Your knee won’t bend after standing for a long period of time, or catches while you are walking
- It’s difficult to stand up after sitting
- Visual changes in your knee
- Inflammation causes visual changes in the appearance of your knee
- You find yourself saying no to your favorite activities such as hiking with your grandchildren or working in the yard because of knee pain
Do I need a knee replacement?
Doctors generally try to delay total knee replacement for as long as possible with non-surgical options including:
- Weight loss
- Anti-inflammatory medications
- Physical therapy
- Steroid injections
- Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections or orthobiologic therapies
“Most knee problems don’t require a knee replacement. There are a variety of other treatments available including physical therapy, weight loss, steroid injections and anti-inflammatory medications,” says Dr. David Fisher, a total joint specialist at OrthoIndy.
“There is usually no rush to having knee replacement surgery, and it is entirely the patient’s decision based on their quality of life, but the majority of patients are happy they had the procedure and wish they had the operation sooner.”
Only you can decide if you are ready for knee replacement surgery; however, the sooner you seek care for your knee pain, the sooner you can return to your favorite hobbies.
Schedule an appointment
Your well-being is important to us. If you have knee pain and are considering knee replacement surgery, schedule an appointment with one of our orthopedic specialists to review your options.
If your injury or condition is recent, you can walk right into one of our OrthoIndy Urgent Care locations for immediate care. For rehabilitation and physical therapy, no referral is needed to see one of our physical therapists.
The Ultimate Guide to Knee Pain Relief
Take control of your knee pain, learn about treatment options, and find out if surgery might be able to help you get back to normal.