Orthopedic Surgery

September 12, 2018

How to Tell It’s Time for Joint Surgery


If chronic pain in your shoulders, hips, or knees keeps you from enjoying your life, it may be time to speak to a surgeon at Arkansas Surgical Hospital about total joint replacement surgery.

The “right time” for a joint replacement varies from person to person based on age, severity of symptoms, and other medical conditions. By being aware of the most common signs that it’s time for a joint replacement, you will be in a better position to make the best decision for you and your body.

Generally, it may be the right time to consider the possibility of having a joint replacement if you begin to experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Your joint pain prevents you from engaging in everyday activities. If you avoid stairs or standing up after sitting because the pain you know you’ll experience just isn’t worth it, it might be time for total joint replacement surgery.
  • Your joint pain is negatively affecting your sleep. One way to determine if joint pain is severe enough for total replacement surgery is if it keeps you from falling asleep or wakes you up at night.
  • Your joint pain continues to persist despite therapy or other non-surgical treatments. If you have already tried prescription and over-the-counter medication, steroid injections, and physical therapy without improvement, joint replacement surgery may be your best chance for resuming your normal life.
  • Your joint pain keeps you from participating in your favorite hobbies. If pain makes you stop doing the things you enjoy, like exercising, traveling, or other hobbies, it might be time to stop putting off joint replacement surgery.

It’s important to note that experiencing the above symptoms does not necessarily mean your doctor will clear you for joint surgery. Whether you are a candidate for total joint replacement surgery depends on several factors that your surgeon will need to carefully assess, such as your age, bone health, bone density, and overall health.

You can schedule an appointment with one of the orthopedic surgeons from Arkansas Surgical Hospital who will examine your physical health, your medical history, and other risk factors. These factors—such as osteoporosis, your risk of infection, and whether you smoke—help determine whether you’re a candidate for total joint replacement surgery. Smoking has been associated with an increased chance of needing corrective surgery afterwards, while osteoporosis can make it difficult for your bones to support the replacement joint.

There is no age requirement for total joint replacement surgery. The question to ask yourself is whether your joint pain is stopping you from participating in the activities you enjoy. There is no need to wait until you are immobile to have joint surgery—after all, you want to maintain an active lifestyle with minimal pain at every stage of your life.

If you are ready to learn more about having joint replacement surgery, Arkansas Surgical Hospital can help. Contact us today at (877) 918-7020 for help scheduling an appointment with one of our physician owners. They will be able to help you determine if a new joint might be the right decision for you.

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