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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    I currently have a knee replacement that is painful and not functioning well. What should I do ?

    I have had issues with my knee for quite a while, and so I finally decided to go ahead with knee replacement surgery. I was expecting this to help with the pain, but unfortunately, since the procedure, I have had pain and issues using my knee. Do I need to be concerned?
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    A/Prof Andrew Kurmis

    Orthopaedic Surgeon

    A total joint replacement that is painful or not functioning well, especially if these represent changes from a previous state is certainly a concern. There can be many potential explanations for the problems you describe. It would be very important to safely exclude an infection or other potentially worrisome underlying condition. I would most strongly recommend you be properly reviewed by a qualified orthopaedic surgeon, ideally someone with expertise in managing knee replacements. In many cases, returning to the original surgeon who did your knee replacement is a good idea (you will need a new GP referral for this). In most situations, you and your knee will require an appropriate clinical examination and often new x-rays (if you haven't had any within the last 3 months). Sometimes screening and/or specific blood tests will be appropriate at this stage too. Depending on what these results show, your surgeon may recommend further specialised investigations. In some cases, there may be an indication for further surgery - either to exclude infection inside the knee, or even to replace some or all of the knee replacement itself.

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