Is knee replacement the most painful surgery?


Knee Replacement surgery is the last treatment option for patients with knee problems. When no other treatments show improvement, your doctor can suggest a knee replacement.

However, many patients are worried about the pain in or after the surgery. The intensity of pain varies with time, medicine, exercise, and other factors. However, the first 48 to 72 hours following surgery are often characterized as a 5/10 on a 0 to 10 pain scale, with 0 indicating no pain and 10 showing the most excruciating agony conceivable. The pain gradually vanishes over 2-6 weeks, and the patient feels better.

Let's learn more about knee replacement and the pain associated with the surgery.

What is knee replacement?

Knee arthroplasty, or knee replacement surgery, may help reduce discomfort and restore functionality in severely damaged knee joints. During this process, an expert removes the damaged bone and cartilage from your thigh-bone, shinbone, and kneecap and replaces it with an artificial joint (prosthesis) comprising metal alloys, high-grade resins, etc., polymers is the operation.

An orthopaedic surgeon evaluates your knee's extent of motion, stability, and strength to see whether a knee replacement is correct for you. Depending on your weight, age, knee size and shape, activity level, and general health, your doctor may pick several knee replacement prostheses and surgical approaches.

Who needs knee replacement surgery?

The most common cause of knee replacement surgery is osteoarthritis. When cartilage — the padding between the knee and the bone joints — breaks down, the age-related ailment emerges.

Other factors include:

  • ● Rheumatoid arthritis: The immune system of the body assaults and damages the knee lining in rheumatoid arthritis.
  • ● Deformities: Bowed legs, often known as knock-knees, are frequently treated with surgery to correct the knee'''s posture.
  • ● Knee injuries: Arthritis may develop due to a fractured bone or damaged ligaments around the knee, causing severe discomfort and limiting mobility.
Let's talk about the procedure of knee replacement surgery.

Read Also - What is the cost of Knee Replacement Surgery?

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How is the procedure done?

Before the procedure

Anesthesia is required for knee replacement surgery. Your feedback and preferences aid the doctors in deciding whether to employ general anesthesia, which gives you senseless or spinal anesthesia, which keeps you awake but prevents you from feeling discomfort below the waist.

An intravenous antibiotic will be administered to you before, during, and after the surgery to help prevent infection. In addition, a nerve block surrounding your knee may potentially be used to numb it. After the operation, the numbness gradually fades.

During the procedure

All sides of the joint will be exposed since your knee will be bent. Your surgeon pushes your kneecap aside and cuts away the injured joint surfaces after creating a 6 to 10 inch (15 to 25centimeter) long incision.

The surgeon joins the artificial joint parts after prepping the joint surfaces. Next, they flex and rotate your knee before sealing the incision to guarantee optimal function. The operation takes roughly one hour for a knee joint.

Why is a knee replacement painful surgery?

Depending on the source, knee replacement pain may manifest itself differently. However,knee discomfort is anticipated due to the surgical treatment, including swelling, bruising, andplacing prosthetics.

It's also possible to have discomfort in other places of your body than your knees, known as referred pain.

The alteration in your posture and walking style may cause pain in your lower back, hips, calves, and groin region at first. But, of course, experiencing pain due to spending so much time in bed during your rehabilitation is normal.

How to manage pain after knee replacement surgery?

Medicines are an excellent approach to managing discomfort. A dermal patch or skin patch is a medicated adhesive patch that is placed on the skin to deliver a medication into the skin. This is in contrast to a transdermal patch, which delivers the medication through the skin and into the bloodstream. However, they don't always last as long as they should or create too many adverse effects. Therefore, your doctor might suggest various non-medicinal techniques to ease pain or discomfort.

Some ways include:

  • ● Aromatherapy: Essential oils are used in aromatherapy to support your body's natural capacity to relax and recover.
  • ● Studies have demonstrated aromatherapy to aid with pain, anxiety, nausea (nausea), and inability to sleep (insomnia).
  • ● Activity: Pain, muscular cramps, and weariness may result from too much time laying down or sitting in one position. A stroll might assist in relieving pain and an upset stomach. In addition, you can speed up your healing period and reduce your risk of pneumonia, blood clots, and constipation by staying active.
  • ● Ice or a cold compress: By numbing nerve endings, cold lowers pain and swelling (inflammation). It's fantastic to aid with pain relief following surgery. Back pain, arthritis, and headaches might all benefit from it. For 20 minutes at a time, use ice or a cold pack.
  • ● Switch positions in bed: You may not get out of bed. Changing your body position in bed often–every 2 hours–might help to relieve pain and discomfort. For example, keeping your back, hips, and head in perfect alignment may help you avoid joint stiffness, muscular strains, and back pain.
  • ● Rest: Physical activity and movement are critical for your healing. You may, however, engage in more exercise than your body can handle. When recuperating from surgery, it's also crucial to give your body time to relax. Rest and pace your activities and motions. Gradually increase your activities as you heal.


Pain, bruising, and swelling are common side effects after knee replacement surgery, whether partial or complete. However, when no other treatment works, a knee replacement surgery can gift you back the knee functionality.

There are many ways to tackle the pain, but there is no way you should postpone or ignore the need for knee replacement surgery.

If you are experiencing knee pain or discomfort, get yourself checked before its too late. Then, you can book an appointment with our experts to know more about knee replacement surgery.

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Dr. Ajinkya Desale

Best Orthopedic and Joint Replacement Surgeon in Nashik