Knee replacement surgery is one of the most common orthopedic surgeries worldwide, with approximately four million people undergoing the procedure every year. 

While most knee replacements do not require further surgery, a revision of the implant may become necessary as the years pass.

We delve into this topic to explore when a second operation is needed and the symptoms that should be monitored.

Knee Replacement: When is a Second Operation Needed?

On average, a knee replacement can last between 15 to 20 years. However, in some instances, a second surgery may be required. Some reasons for a second knee replacement operation include:

  • Disconnection of the prosthesis: Over time, the prosthesis may detach from the bone. This can happen due to wear and tear and may require a second surgery to address the issue;
  • Dislocation or fracture: Trauma or injury can cause fractures near the prosthesis, which may require a second surgery to restore proper function and stability;
  • Wear problems: Improper load distribution or twisting movements can lead to wear and tear of the artificial joint. This can result in inflammation or damage to the bone, requiring revision surgery.

Knee Replacement Revision: Symptoms to Watch Out For

If you experience the following symptoms after a knee replacement surgery, it is essential to consult a specialist:

  • Pain and swelling: Persistent pain and swelling around the knee area;
  • Difficulty in movement: Difficulty in bending or extending the knee, causing limitations in mobility;
  • Functional impairment: Decreased range of motion or difficulty in performing daily activities.

A specialist will evaluate your condition through examinations and determine if a second surgery is necessary. It is recommended not to wait for symptoms to worsen, as early consultation can prevent the loss of physical autonomy.

Knee Replacement Revision: Is Preventing the Need for Surgery Possible?

While several factors can contribute to the need for revision surgery, some measures can help prevent complications caused by wear and tear:

  • Exercise moderation in physical activities: Avoid high-impact activities that may accelerate degenerative processes, such as running or contact sports;
  • Avoid traumatic sports: Activities with a high risk of joint trauma, such as soccer, American football, and martial arts, should be avoided;
  • Maintain a healthy weight: Excess weight puts additional stress on the knee joints. Maintaining a healthy weight reduces the load on the prosthetic implant and can help prevent complications.

Additionally, proper postural exercises and rehabilitation tailored to individual needs can promote optimal load distribution and reduce stress on the prosthetic implant.

Different facilities employ advanced techniques and technologies to provide personalized care for knee replacement surgery. The overall approach combines the expertise of physicians, robotics, and artificial intelligence. Through preoperative planning, including 3-D reconstructions and analysis of biomechanical parameters, a customized surgical procedure that minimizes discomfort and promotes long-term comfort and durability of the prosthesis can be ensured.