New Study: Only Half of those with Arthritis Reported Significant Improvement After a Hip or Knee Replacement Surgery
Knee or hip replacement surgery recovery-how far will you get? As I have blogged many times, most patients believe that getting a hip or knee replacement is like going in to get a new part put into their car. This is not the case, as hip and knee replacement surgeries are big and invasive affairs. For example, recent research has shown significant increases in the chance for a heart attack after a hip or knee replacement surgery. In addition, some studies have begun to question whether the research supporting that these joint procedures work is robust. Now a new study questions that efficacy further, showing that only about half of the patients who get a hip or knee replaced have significant improvement in pain and mobility after the surgery. The authors of the new study looked at 2,400 patients with both common and inflammatory arthritis. Nearly 480 of these patients had a hip or knee replacement and of the 202 patients included in the study, only half reported a meaningful improvement in their overall hip and knee pain and disability one to two years after surgery. What’s more, researchers found the patients who had worse knee or hip pain to begin with but fewer general health problems and no arthritis outside of the replaced joint were more likely to report benefits. However, nearly 83 per cent of study participants had at least two troublesome hips and or knees. In general, an estimated 25 per cent of patients who undergo a single joint replacement will have another joint replacement within two years. This fits with what we see in the clinic, as most of our patients have multiple problem areas, like back and knee pain or a hip and knee that hurts. The upshot? These very invasive surgeries often fail to satisfy the clinical expectations of patients. If you have pain in multiple areas, the results of a knee or hip replacement surgery may disappoint.