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Carolinas HealthCare System
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Title
Is Total Joint Replacement the Solution for You?
Date
03/14/2014
Article

Like any other mechanism, the joints in your body wear down over time. Arthritis, disease and injury can speed up the deterioration of your joints, making everyday activities painful. Due to recent advancements in technology and medicine, total joint replacements are becoming more commonplace with shorter, easier recovery periods than ever before.

What is a Total Joint Replacement?

Learn More About Total Joint Replacement

With recovery from hip and knee replacement now shorter and easier than ever before, you don't have to live with pain.

Attend a free health talk with Robert Nantais, MD, of Carolinas HealthCare System to learn about the latest joint surgery techniques, treatment options and what to expect after surgery.

When: Tuesday, May 20, 6 p.m. Where: Community Room at CMC-Waxhaw, 2700 Providence Road S., Waxhaw, NC
RSVP: Call 704-512-5644

A total joint replacement usually involves the hip, knee, or shoulder, and is often recommended when a patient experiences constant pain and has not responded to other treatments. During the procedure, the surgeon will completely remove the affected joint, replacing it with an advanced prosthesis, made of plastic and metal. Depending on the patient, the joint may be cemented into place for instant fixation in weaker bones; or press fit into place, to allow the bone to grow onto the prosthesis.

The effectiveness of the procedure depends largely on the patient’s diligence and discipline during post-surgery rehabilitation. Physical therapy starts almost immediately after the procedure, and continues for a few months afterward. Closely following the surgeon’s orders after the procedure is the most important thing a patient can do to ensure a successful outcome.

A total joint replacement typically lasts 20+ years before further revision surgery may be required.

A Promising Firsthand Account

For one 48-year old patient who had been experiencing “manageable” pain in her knees for years, a fall from a ladder in the summer of 2013 compounded the results of years of declining joint health.

A month after the fall, the patient was pushing her granddaughter in a stroller when she fell again, inflicting even further damage to her knee and prompting immediate action from her doctor. Following several attempts at treatment through cortisone injections and medication, the patient’s physician, Robert Nantais, MD, recommended she undergo a total joint replacement.

Dr. Robert Nantais, who practices at Carolinas Medical Center Orthopaedic Surgery-Union, performed the procedure in early January 2014 without complications. The patient’s range of motion was already up to 98 percent following about two months of rehabilitation.

With the help of the staff at CMC-Orthopaedic Surgery-Union, her in-home therapists from Union Regional Home Care and the rehabilitation specialists at CMC-Union, the patient is expected to have a complete recovery. With new technology making recovery from total joint replacement procedures easier and faster than ever before, success stories like this are no longer outliers – they’re the standard.

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