Knee preservation surgeries prevent irreversible damage and achieve normal motion: Doctor

According to Dr. Vaidya, Knee Preserving Surgeries require a structured and tailored rehabilitation program in the post-operative period to regain motion of the joints, and muscle strength and reduce pain and swelling.

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Dr. Narendra Vaidya, Managing Director Of The Lokmanya Group Of Hospitals said on Thursday that the over-active and always on-the-go lifestyle makes people prone to injuries to the ligaments, meniscus, and cartilage. According to Dr. Vaidya, the knee joint is made of three bones, namely the Femur (thigh bone), Tibia (Leg bone), and Patella (Knee cap) and it undergoes wear and tears with growing age at a pace determined by genetics and environment.

The doctor cautioned that neglecting these injuries can expedite the occurrence of arthritis. “Knee preservation surgeries aim at restoring the anatomy to a near-normal status to prevent irreversible damage and hence achieve normal motion without replacing the joint,” he added.

Knee preservation consists of various non-surgical and surgical modalities. Knee preservation surgeries can be done in case of ligament injuries, cartilage Injuries causing osteochondral defects, Meniscal injuries, Patellar instability, Varus/Valgus deformity, and osteoarthritis. A small and well-defined area of cartilage loss can be managed with knee preservation surgeries, but if the loss is global and more advanced then joint replacement may be considered,” Dr. Vaidya said in a statement.

Moreover, arthroscopic ligament repair and reconstruction, joint Realignment Surgeries, Arthroscopic Meniscus repair and partial-resection, Arthroscopic debridement plus lavage, Autologous Chondrocyte Implantation and Mosaicplasty are some of the knee preservation surgeries that are done for relief from knee problems.

“Multiple factors need to be considered while selecting the modality of treatment as the approach has to be individualized. The results of knee preservation are better in younger patients and tend to get more guarded as the age advances. One’s body weight is directly proportional to the stress on the knee joint. The results of knee preservation can be enhanced by remaining in a zone of optimal body weight. The knee joint is protected by a cover of muscles that act as shock-absorbers and dynamic stabilizers. The strength of these muscles, namely the quadriceps and hamstrings, plays a pivotal role in the outcomes of knee preservation modalities. The surgical techniques of knee preservation being minimally invasive provide early recovery, better outcomes, and reduced risk of complications. Rehabilitation programs can be started immediately after the surgery to maintain joint mobility and muscle strength,” Dr. Narendra Vaidya said in a statement.

“Non-surgical modalities of knee preservation can also do the trick. Stress on the knee joint is directly proportional to body weight and activities like squatting, sitting cross-legged, jumping, and running result in stresses which are 2-3 times the body weight. In stages of acute pain and swelling, one must refrain from such activities that increase the loads on the knee. The muscles in our body provide us with the ability to bear weight and move. Movement is life and life is movement. A structured physiotherapy/exercise protocol under guided supervision can lead to alleviation of pain and prevention of injuries. Use braces based on the need of the joint and only after being assessed by an orthopedician. Well-balanced nutrition will help in efficient body functioning, refrain from a sedentary lifestyle, do yoga and meditation,” Dr Vaidya added.

According to Dr. Vaidya, Knee Preserving Surgeries require a structured and tailored rehabilitation program in the post-operative period to regain motion of the joints, and muscle strength and reduce pain and swelling.

“The exercises/physiotherapy is tailored based on the surgery performed and the status of the patient. These have to be done under the supervision of a trained physiotherapist in tandem with the operating surgeon. Supportive aids in form of crutches, braces, and walkers may be needed in the immediate post-operative period. The average period of post-operative rehabilitation ranges from 6 weeks to 3 months but may vary from person to person depending upon their general condition, tolerance, and compliance,” concluded Dr Vaidya.

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