Medical management for the different varieties of arthritis has improved tremendously over the last 20 years. However, there are still many patients for whom medical management either does’t work or who progressive joint damage that requires surgical intervention.
The thought of surgery is frightening because of the many potential risks that can occur whenever general anesthesia and a major surgical operation are considered.
Here are some tips and questions to consider before proceeding with joint replacement surgery. Sometimes there are conventional medicines that haven’t been tried yet that might offer relief. You need to make sure your rheumatologist has looked at them all.
A change in dosage ie. an increase- may be all that is required. Sometimes the use of two medicines together is a solution. There may be synergy.
Make sure all the different options other than surgery have been explored. Sometimes clinical research trials will offer a treatment that is very effective but that is currently not available to mainstream patients. If surgery is definite, then find out what the different surgical options that are available could be. Sometimes minimally invasive procedures will be involved and that would be a plus.