Whether through the natural aging process or due to harsh wear-and-tear or injury from playing a sport, our joints can begin to weaken and hurt. The protective cartilage in a joint may be degraded, and the synovial fluid may not be as plentiful anymore – thereby contributing to stiff, achy, and swelling joints in your neck, shoulders, elbows, hands, hips, knees, or feet.
If less-invasive measures such as pain-relief injections and physical therapy are no longer working or cannot work to heal your injured joint, then your orthopedic doctor may recommend joint reconstruction surgery. Reconstruction surgeries focus on repairing damaged parts of a joint or replacing the joint with prosthetic materials.
Your orthopedic surgeon will explain your options based on your specific joint issue, your overall health, and the severity of the issue. Let’s talk about the most common joint reconstruction surgeries that are used to repair injured or damaged joints and who you can talk to about your options.
Types of Joint Reconstruction Surgery
Technologies and techniques are constantly improving in the field of orthopedic medicine. A few of the most popular surgical modalities in joint reconstruction are the following:
Joint Replacement Surgery
A total joint replacement can now often be performed as an outpatient procedure. The surgeon can replace the damaged parts of the joint with prosthetic parts, and the procedure can be either a partial or total joint replacement depending on the extent of the damage. Joint replacement surgery is often performed on the shoulders, hips, and knees.
Joint Resurfacing Surgery
For patients who are younger and therefore may not really benefit from a total replacement, joint resurfacing surgery may be recommended. This is often performed on the hip joint, where an injury has accelerated damage to the joint surfaces – i.e., at the ends of the bones in the hip where they rub against each other and move around awkwardly.
Joint resurfacing surgery in the hip involves trimming the femoral head (the curved top of the femur, or upper leg bone) to remove the damaged bone surfaces and trim the damaged cartilage. The surgeon may then place a metal or other covering over the femoral head in order to reinforce the integrity of the bone.
Reconstructive Surgeon in St. Louis, MO
Joint reconstruction surgeries are helping patients who have debilitating joint issues to participate once again in the activities that bring them joy – so they can live normal lives. If you are experiencing joint pain or mobility issues, talk to our highly skilled orthopedic surgeons at Advanced Bone & Joint.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule a consultation, contact our friendly staff today by calling us at (636) 229-4222 or request an appointment by filling out our online form now. We look forward to helping you get back to the active lifestyle you love.