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The Difference Between Arthroplasty and Joint Replacement Therapy

Posted on in Joint Replacement

KneeFor patients who struggle with joint pain in the hips, knees, and shoulders, there are several options. Advanced medical science and joint replacement surgeons in Jacksonville, FL, have come a long way to offer patients the latest in joint replacement therapy. What’s the difference between arthroplasty and joint replacement therapy? Keep reading to learn more from the experts at Southeast Orthopedic Specialists.

What is Arthroplasty?

The truth is there’s no difference between arthroplasty and joint replacement therapy; they’re the same procedure. Joint replacement therapy is one of the most advanced and most successful surgeries performed in the medical industry. However, the term joint replacement can seem scary which is why more and more doctors are using the term arthroplasty instead. Joint replacement is not as invasive as it sounds. In most cases, the surgeon only needs to remove and replace a small portion of the joint in a procedure called a partial joint replacement. However, this is only after all noninvasive methods like physical therapy and pain management have been exhausted. Today, most arthroplasty procedures are minimally invasive, meaning that only a few small incisions are needed to remove and replace damaged joint materials. The benefits of modern arthroplasty are less tissue damage from surgery and faster recovery times.    

Operating Different Types of  Joint Replacement

While partial joint replacement or arthroplasty is the most common type of replacement therapy, there are other forms that your doctor may recommend depending on the severity of the damage to your joints. The most common forms of arthroplasty are performed on the hips and knees. Modern arthroplasty relies heavily on replacement prosthesis. For example, during a hip replacement surgery, the acetabulum, or hip socket, and the head of the femur are removed and replaced with metal replicas. Replacement joints are usually made of a ceramic mixture with alumina, zirconia, and titanium. The mixture mimics the weight and rigidity of bone without risk of allergic reaction that could cause the body to reject the replacement. The knee is comprised of three different parts: the patella, the medial, and the lateral. In a partial knee replacement procedure, your doctor will only remove and replace the affected parts, not necessarily all three. In most cases, however, it is better to replace all three parts and reduce the need for future knee surgeries.

Recovering After Surgery

Depending on whether you have a partial or a total joint replacement, you can expect to spend between one to four days recovering in the hospital. When you return home, you will be expected to rest and limit all physical activity for the next several weeks. Most patients who undergo a partial joint replacement can usually return to light duty and activities within a few weeks after their surgery. To determine if joint replacement surgery in Jacksonville, FL, is right for you, consult the medical experts at Southeast Orthopedic Specialists.

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