Political Keeda

Risks and complications of knee replacement surgery

Risks and complications of knee replacement surgery

Total knee replacement has turned into an effective method of arthritis knee treatment. A myriad of early complications can occur after knee replacement, knee cap surgery. This post discusses complications of total knee arthroplasty, knee cap surgery, bilateral knee replacement surgery, knee keyhole surgery, and other knee operations presented to GPs. Such complications include problems with wound healing, infection, bleeding, deep venous thrombosis, swelling, stiffness and persistent pain. The rate of complications after total knee replacement and other knee surgery is reported in most publications ranges from 1.65 to 11.3%. 

Risks and complications of knee replacement surgery

  • Wound healing problems

Wound healing problems occur because of the thin soft tissue covering the knee, especially over the anterior aspect. If wound healing takes time it could lead to infection. Healing problems can be associated with hematoma-a solid swelling of clotted blood within the tissues. People who are on steroids or have rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis are prone to wound healing problems. 

  • Knee stiffness

The stiff knee joint is another problem that most people experience after total knee replacement surgery and bilateral knee replacement surgery. Stiff knee joints cause difficulty with normal activities including going downstairs, sitting in a chair, or getting out of a car. The best treatment for the knee joint and knee pain is aggressive therapies before and after knee surgery. 

One of the most common neurological complications after knee replacement surgery is peroneal nerve palsy. It brings in numbness, paraesthesia and foot drop. Depending upon the severity of the symptoms, a conservative approach is followed or nerve explored by your knee doctor  

  • Infection

Infection is a major complication of knee surgeries like total knee arthroplasty and knee cap surgery. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes mellitus, poor nutrition, old age, and obesity are at higher risk of both superficial and deep infection. Some common symptoms of infection are joint pain, joint effusion, induration, erythema, wound oozing and fever.

  • Wearing out of implants

After a knee operation, there’s no guarantee that knee implants will last forever, even if the goal of the knee implants is to last your lifetime. Not every implant lasts your lifetime, and in such cases, you’ll need a second knee replacement, also known as revision knee replacement. Strenuous impact sports, skiing, and running, can create stress on the implants that may lead to failure of the implanted joint/knee.

When to call your knee surgeon or knee doctorCall and seek help if you have:

  • a temperature of 101.6 F or higher

  • a sudden increase in drainage, draining lasting more than five days after your surgery, or drainage that is yellow in color or foul-smelling

  • severe discomfort, fatigue, or pain

  • severe swelling that does not improve each day

  • blisters around your incision

  • any change in movements such as new weakness, firmness in your calf muscle or inability to move as usual

  • any questions or concerns

Share this story