Living with a joint that isn’t functioning like it should and has been causing you pain can be scary. You may wonder if you need a joint replacement, but are grappling with fear of the surgery and not knowing what choice is best. Many people have dealt with this unknown as they try to take on their daily tasks. An occasional pain in the knee is one thing, but chronic, severe pain even when you aren’t moving is another. But, is a joint replacement really the best choice for you?
If you’re facing this type of decision, it’s always important to talk to your doctor. According to Dr. Joseph Maratt, an orthopedic surgeon who specializes in hip and knee replacements, “I tell patients that joint replacement is an elective surgery and that the choice of when to have surgery is entirely up to them.”
Dr. Maratt continues on to explain that these factors should be considered when weighing the pros and cons of joint replacement surgery:
If you find that you have to give up aspects of your life that are important to you because of the pain, it may be time for a joint replacement. No one should have to trade happiness and quality of life because of joint disease. Dr. Maratt explains that most people will know when the time is right for joint replacement, “It’s when you find yourself giving up things that matter to you, missing out on things that matter, or doing it anyway and then suffering for it later – it’s that point when most people know surgery that can help them is the right choice.”
If you find that you’ve tried everything to manage joint pain and aren’t able to have the quality of life that you want, a total joint replacement may be the right option for you.