At 62, Barbara Cotoia is an active grandmother of six who loves to go shopping with friends and work in her garden. But due to the severe pain she suffered in both her knees, she began missing out on these things. “My grandkids are active and I would have to sit on the side and watch them play, instead of sitting down on the floor and playing with them.” Because of her knee pain, Barbara made excuses not to do things with family and friends and says she “felt like an old lady”.
Driven by the daily pain and her need to be independent, Barbara finally decided to have both knees replaced. In April 2006, after discussing the risks and benefits of the surgery with her doctor, she received bilateral knee replacements.
Barbara decided to have her knee replaced and under the supervision of her doctor, started rehabilitation the very next day. Soon after her first surgery Barbara decided to have her other knee replaced. She went to a rehabilitation facility where she did physical therapy three times a day. After ten days at the facility she returned home where she continued her therapy. “Physical therapy was hard but I knew it was an important part of my recovery, so I pushed myself, and I am glad I did.”
Barbara can now go shopping and walk around the mall with her friends, where before she couldn’t. She has returned to her gardening and is able to play trains on the floor with her grandkids!
The surgery has given Barbara back her independence and she can’t wait to start traveling. “I can only imagine how far my Stryker knees may take me”.
All surgery carries risk. See your orthopaedic surgeon to discuss your potential benefits and risks. Not all patients will have the same post-operative recovery and activity level. Individual results vary.
Total knee replacement is intended for use in individuals with joint disease resulting from degenerative, rheumatoid and post-traumatic arthritis, and for moderate deformity of the knee.
Knee replacement surgery is not appropriate for patients with certain types of infections, any mental or neuromuscular disorder which would create an unacceptable risk of prosthesis instability, prosthesis fixation failure or complications in postoperative care, compromised bone stock, skeletal immaturity, severe instability of the knee, or excessive body weight.
As with any surgery, knee replacement surgery has serious risks which include, but are not limited to, pain, infection, bone fracture, peripheral neuropathies (nerve damage), circulatory compromise (including deep vein thrombosis (blood clots in the legs)), genitourinary disorders (including kidney failure), gastrointestinal disorders (including paralytic ileus (loss of intestinal digestive movement)), vascular disorders (including thrombus (blood clots), blood loss, or changes in blood pressure or heart rhythm), bronchopulmonary disorders (including emboli, stroke or pneumonia), heart attack, and death.
Implant related risks which may lead to a revision include dislocation, loosening, fracture, nerve damage, heterotopic bone formation (abnormal bone growth in tissue), wear of the implant, metal and/or foreign body sensitivity, soft tissue imbalance, osteolysis (localized progressive bone loss), and reaction to particle debris. Knee implants may not provide the same feel or performance characteristics experienced with a normal healthy joint.
The information presented is for educational purposes only. Speak to your doctor to decide if joint replacement surgery is right for you. Individual results vary and not all patients will return to the same postoperative activity level. The lifetime of any joint replacement is limited and varies with each individual. Your doctor will counsel you about how to best maintain your activities in order to potentially prolong the lifetime of the device. Such strategies include not engaging in high-impact activities, such as running, as well as maintaining a healthy weight. It is important to closely follow your doctor’s instructions regarding post-surgery activity, treatment and follow-up care. Ask your doctor if the joint replacement is right for you.
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