Pearlie Williamsn suffered from knee pain that was slowing down her active lifestyle for years. At age 98, Williams decided to have knee replacement surgery.
“My knee bothered me all the time. It just ached and hurt,” she recalls. Long-term knee pain is usually caused by one of the following conditions: osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, post-traumatic arthritis or obesity.
Other problems result from injury, such as a blow to the knee or sudden movements that strain the knee beyond its normal range of movement.
DMC Sinai-Grace Hospital orthopaedic surgeon Dr. Daniel Hoard performed Williams’ total knee replacement surgery. “For patients such as Williams, who suffer with severe, long-term joint pain that interferes with daily life, knee surgery offers much needed relief,” Dr. Hoard says.
Today, minimally invasive knee replacement techniques do not involve cutting the muscles and tendons.
Traditional minimally invasive surgery involved splitting the quadriceps muscle and flipping back the kneecap to insert the new artificial knee. This newer approach allows for a smaller incision and does not disrupt the knee joint, allowing the patient to maintain muscle strength.
Patients are often discharged in two or three days and most are walking with a cane within two weeks and walking comfortably at six weeks.
“In some cases, minimally invasive knee surgery is a good option for patients, offering shorter hospital stays, quicker recoveries and smaller scars,” Dr. Hoard says. “But this approach is not appropriate for everyone, and it’s important to talk to your doctor about the best choice for you.”
This story first appeared in Sinai-Grace Hospital’s Healthy Living magazine. Click here to read more Healthy Living stories.