Total joint replacements – especially hip replacements – are some of the most successful and effective surgeries out there. MCJR’s joint replacement successes are no different, with a 98% high patient satisfaction rate. Modern joint components are made to last upwards of 20 years, but if you begin to feel pain or swelling years after a joint replacement, your implant may have worn down or loosened over time. You may be a candidate for a revision joint replacement.
What is a revision joint replacement like?
In a revision joint replacement surgery, your surgeon removes some or all parts of the original implant and replaces them. Revision surgeries are more complex than traditional joint replacements because your surgeon has to remove the existing implant (which has likely grown into your bone) and then plan and customize the new implant extensively.
If your entire implant has worn down, your surgeon will remove all parts and replace them with new ones. However, if just a part of your implant needs to be revised, your surgeon will customize a part to replace what needs to be replaced.
If a part of your bone is damaged by a fall or incident, your surgeon will likely use specialized implants with longer stems to fit deeper into the bone so that your bones will have extra support. In these cases, your surgeon will spend some additional time customizing your implant to ensure stability and durability.
Why would I need a revision joint replacement surgery?
The most common reasons for revision surgery include infection, fracture (broken bone) around the implant, and loosening of the implant. These things can happen soon after a joint replacement or after decades of good function.
Some of the most common reasons you may need a revision are:
- Fall or accident
- With aging comes weakening bones and a higher likelihood of injury from falling. If you fall on your implant or experience any accident, come see your surgeon to make sure everything looks ok.
- Although modern implants can last upwards of 20 years, being overweight will wear your joints out faster. According to the Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center, being even 10 pounds overweight increases the force on one’s knees by 30-60 pounds.
- Involvement in high-impact sports
- Many joint replacement patients can happily return to the sports they love. But those who participate heavily in high-impact sports that involve a lot of running may need a revision surgery down the road. This level of impact on an implant can wear it out or loosen it faster.
- History of infection
- Post-op infection rarely occurs, especially at our surgery facility. But if you get an infection either soon after surgery or years down the road, you will likely need a revision. Contact your surgeon immediately if you notice significant swelling, tenderness, and redness around your joint.
Find a Skilled Surgeon
Revision surgeries are more complicated and require greater surgical skill. If you need a revision surgery, it’s important that you find a surgeon who has significant experience in complex revision surgeries. Many orthopedic surgeons know the joint replacement surgery process, but only perform them a few times a year. Our surgeons can perform the same joint replacement surgery 10 times in a day. This is why we recommend you find a surgeon who specializes in joint replacement and treats the same conditions all day, every day.
If you want to learn more about your options for a revision surgery, contact our office at 317-455-1064. All of our surgeons are skilled in revision surgeries and want to help you regain your quality of life!