What is a Knee Replacement and how do I know if I need one?

The knee is one of the most important joints of the human body because it will help you move from one location to other. The knee joint consists of hard cartilages, ligaments, and a bone called the patella. In the case of knee arthritis, the cartilages become thin. It will increase the friction and lead to pain and inflammation. There are many ways to solve knee issues. In case of mild knee pain, you can consult your doctor and take medications. In severe cases, you may need knee replacement surgery.

What is a knee replacement?

If your knee joint is not performing well due to injury or osteoarthritis, you may need this surgery. In the past, this procedure was considered complicated. Only a few people choose it because of complications. The advancements in technology made this procedure more popular. The surgeon will make an incision on the top of the knee joint to push the patella on the side and access the knee joint. The surgeon will remove the damaged parts of the joint like cartilage and patella as there are specialized prosthetics for knee surgery. The surgeon will apply some adhesive on the surface of the bones to apply the joint prosthetic. After complete application, they will close the knee joint and stitch the skin.

How do I know if I need one?

A person may need this surgery if he is suffering from pain and mobility issues. In case of mild pain, you can take some medicines and avoid surgery. People can't avoid surgery when they are at an advanced stage of these conditions.


In the case of osteoarthritis, there is some problem in the bone repair mechanism. Sometimes, the cartilage will not repair efficiently. Bones may also grow irregularly in this condition due to a lack of adequate calcium. The knee cartilage will become thin and there is a possibility of bone friction. You are going to need replacement surgery at an advanced stage.

Rheumatoid arthritis

You may also need this surgery if your immune cells start attacking the knee joint. In this arthritis, you may also need to take immunosuppressants to prevent injury to other body parts.


If your body is not excreting the uric acid in adequate quantities, it can lead to uric acid buildup in your joints. In severe cases, it will form crystals in the joint and cause knee arthritis. When you have chronic gout, the knee joint cartilage gets damaged. You may need knee replacement surgery in this case also to get rid of the pain.

Blood supply issues

If you have a blood-related disease like hemophilia, there are more chances of cartilage damage. The knee joint is a large structure and requires a continuous oxygen supply to maintain cartilage and bone health. If there are blood supply flaws or some issue in the blood cells, it will affect the health of the knee joint. In severe cases, you may need knee surgery.


Sports injuries and road accidents can damage the knee joint. If the joint is not recovering after taking medicines and rest for a few months, you may need knee surgery. This surgery is crucial if you have a high level of mobility issues.


Possible reasons I can't be eligible for knee replacement

After the knee surgery, your knee joint will become heavy as the surgeons have installed a prosthetic joint between the bones. If you have weak leg muscles due to malnutrition or muscle disease, you are not eligible for knee replacement. A person with poorly managed diabetes is also not eligible for this surgery because his body will not heal the wounds efficiently. People with diabetes try to avoid any injury including the surgical incidence because the repair time is high. They may have to wait years to recover from the wound. If there are some ulcers near the knee joint, the surgeon may not recommend this surgery. The condition can become wear if you have chronic ulcers behind the knee joint. These ulcers will prevent recovery of the surgical incision. The knee replacement will not improve your condition in case of ulcers because the mobility issue and pain will not go away.

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  • Had first knee surgery 2015 2018 got infection had second surgery 2022 got another infection had surgery put spacers in stayed in hospital 35 days on antibiotics released after 6 weeks had next surgery August put need back in now in therapy this 3 rd month . Still swollen and muscles are weak. But infections gone and I’m walking ok. Lil uncomfortable but I won’t complain.

  • my left knee is so bad very painfull and I had my right knee replace 7 years ago, it is good now, the only sad part is i cannot kneal on it and i enjoy baths and now i struggle to have baths,get off the floor and many other things i need the left one done but scare to get it done then both knees will be steel then i wont be able to do alot,so what should i do?

    norma elizebeth stewart
  • been having knee problems since I was a teenager, have had 5 surgeries for cartilage damage(98,2000,02,07,14) last saw surgeon in 16 when he informed me I need another but have nothing to work with, now find myself in constant pain and limping when walking, BTW, I am in great shape, but have high blood pressure which is controlled by medication, I am sure I need a replacement

  • In 2015 I’ve had the both knee replacement in the same day and time, I was very healthy, and about two weeks I start bleeding from the right knee, I call the ambulance and back to the hospital, the Doctors open the wound, washed and closed, after three weeks I’ve had the left knee the pieces moving inside and the pain it was horrible, back to hospital again, I’ve had another replacement, after two or three weeks the pain in the right knee again, I when to see the Dr specialist, and he said I’ve had an infection, I had another operation, putted a lot of cement in the bone, over three months with my leg straight very little movements, and have the operation for put the metals back, and for make this long short, they the Drs did drilling in the bone straight to one side of the bone, and when I walking the metal inside scratching the bone the pain it was terrible, and Drs can’t found the Problem, I had another operation, and knee cap its missing, when I walking my knee going backward and jerk all the time, I got pain in my lower back and the thighs

    Luis Toro
  • I had both knees replaced last year,8months apart. Excellent outcome but you really have to keep your exercises up both pre-and post surgery.

    Jill Bozzetto

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