Knee pain and resultant loss of mobility of the knee joint is mainly caused due to different types of arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis, post-traumatic arthritis and osteoarthritis. Pain, swelling and deformity of the knee joint are the characteristic symptoms of the above-mentioned diseases.
There are many non-surgical methods of treating arthritis of the knee joint which are employed before considering surgery. They have been listed here:
- Physical therapy to improve functionality of the joint.
- Drugs such as analgesics and anti-inflammatory medications.
- Visco-supplementation injections to lubricate the joint in order to make the movements less painful.
- Knee bracing or shoe inserts to help in proper alignment of knee joint and balance weight correctly on the joint.
If all the above listed measures fail to relieve knee pain, surgical intervention is the only possible option left before the patient. Surgical interventions include:
- Osteotomy- This is a procedure in which the involved bone is cut and realigned. It is then allowed to heal. This procedure is suitable for patients above the age of 60 who are suffering with inflammatory arthritis.
- Arthroscopy is another surgical procedure which involves small incisions on the bone to repair the damage.
- Knee replacement surgery to partially or completely replace the damaged knee joint.
India is a favourable destination for many foreign medical tourists requiring knee surgery because the cost of knee surgery in India is quite affordable as opposed to the western countries without compromising on the quality of treatment.
Knee replacement surgery
Total Knee Replacement surgery is a procedure which is also known as Total Knee Arthroplasty. The surgical procedure involves the replacement of damaged cartilage and bone from the surface of knee joint with artificial components. Total knee replacement surgery is performed in cases of advanced damage to the knee joint. This procedure is not performed in case of children. Total Knee Replacement is done to restore functions of the joint and relieve pain permanently.
The following techniques are used for total knee replacement surgery:
- Traditional Knee replacement is performed under general anaesthesia. The damaged bone and cartilage surfaces are removed at the end of femur and tibia to be replaced with artificial metal components made of alloys or polymers. The metal components are cemented to the underlying bone.
- Minimal invasive knee replacement surgery is minimally invasive with smaller incisions of 4-6 inches. The implants are placed using special equipment.
- Computer navigated knee replacement surgery uses NAV3 technology and reduces the need for surgical exposure. This method also enhances the accuracy of prosthetic implantation. The recovery time and performance of the knee joint are also improved.
The surgeon can also go for partial knee replacement surgery according to the condition of the joint. The knee replacement surgery cost India starts at about $5000 and is determined by the type of procedure, quality of implant, hospital facilities, etc.
Post-surgical pain and discomfort are controlled by medications. The person can resume normal activities within 3-4 weeks.