How often or likely is a loosened knee replacement the result of an error by the surgeon?
Failed or loosened knee replacements have gotten much attention due to law firms aiming to round up U.S. plaintiffs for class action lawsuits involving allegedly defective knee implant devices.
You certainly wondering, then, if it’s possible for the knee replacement hardware to be of high quality — but then the surgeon makes a mistake in the operating room.
“Yes; for low volume surgeons, the likelihood of a poor cementation job or mal-alignment leading to more rapid wear is higher,” says Jeffrey A. Geller, MD, Associate Chief, Division of Hip & Knee Reconstruction; Director, Minimally Invasive Hip & Knee Replacements, Columbia University Medical Center, NY, NY.
‘Typically a loosened knee de-bonds from the bone. If the cement (which acts like a grout) is not done carefully, it may come loose sooner.”
This is one reason why it’s better to have one joint replaced at a time, rather than both at once.
After all, if there is going to be the potential for surgeon error, it’s better to have this occur with one knee than with both.
Some knee pain patients do elect to have both joints replaced at the same time, but it’s advisable to have one joint done at a time.
A bone scan will confirm loosened TKRs.
The symptoms of loosened knee joints can mimic other conditions, such as osteoarthritis in the hip — which can cause referral pain in the knee/s.
If the recovery of your total knee replacement surgery doesn’t seem to be going as anticipated, or, you begin experiencing unexplained pain in the surgical knee after a period of doing well with it — it’s time to visit the possibility of a failed implant.
Dr. Geller specializes in arthritic disorders of the hip and knee. He has extensive training in joint replacements and performs surgery using some of the latest, most advanced minimally invasive techniques.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.