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Child Orthopedics
Spine - Cervical
Spine - Lumbar
Spine - Thoracic

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I've had one total knee replacement (TKR) and I need another on the other side. I saw a report that new technology and better surgery is on the way for joint replacements. Should I wait another year or two before having the second knee done to take advantage of the new developments?

This is a decision best left up to you and your surgeon. Some say this is too far away to wait if you are losing function now because of pain and stiffness. Other doctors in large research hospitals are already using these methods. You might want to look into it if you are close to any facilities where this kind of surgery is being done.

A recent opinion published by Dr. Thomas Parker Vail advised surgeons and patients to ask some hard questions such as:

  • Will the new computer-assisted surgery give the same results as the old way to put in an implant? Will the patient have just as good function?
  • How long will the implants last? Will they last as long as the implants put in the standard way?
  • Is it wise to start changing our ways of doing things before they are truly proven?
  • What is the long-term performance of the new implants using the new ways to put them in?
  • How much is a quick recovery worth? Is it worth the risk of implant failure or chronic pain?

    Ask your surgeon if minimally-assisted and or computer-assisted knee implants are available in your area. Ask if you are a good candidate for this type of operation.

  • References:

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