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What is Knee Replacement?

Knee replacement, also called knee arthroplasty is a surgical procedure that replaces a damaged knee with a plastic or metal implant. The surgery is recommended to people who have been suffering from severe arthritis or have suffered a major knee injury. 

There are several types of arthritis that can affect the joints of the knee. Some of the most common ones include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and traumatic arthritis. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that affects middle-aged or older people. The condition can cause the breakdown of the cartilage in joints and makes the knee joint weaker. Rheumatoid arthritis, on the other hand, leads to inflammation of the synovial membranes in joints and can cause excessive fluid buildup, which leads to stiffness and pain. Lastly, traumatic arthritis is caused due to a major injury to the knee and can severely damage the knee cartilage, which may give rise to the need for a joint replacement. 

Before recommending knee replacement surgery, your doctor will try to use conservative methods for your treatments. In case such methods failed to show effect, surgical treatments will be considered. To determine if you were a viable candidate for knee replacement surgery, some physical tests and scans will be done. Moreover, the surgical technique would also depend upon your body weight, activity, size, and shape of the knee, and overall health.

Types of disease

Total Knee Replacement

Unicompartmental or Partial Knee Replacement

When do you need a Knee replacement?

  • Medications, including strong anti-inflammatory drugs, are not helping ease your pain.
  • Less invasive treatment options like cortisone injections, lubricating injections, and physical therapy have not been effective in reducing pain and inflammation.
  • You face severe difficulty and pain in performing even simpler tasks like bathing, getting out of bed, climbing the stairs, walking, etc.
  • You have started experiencing pain even when your knee is stationary while you're sitting or lying down.
  • There is visible deformation in the knee.
  • You are in the age group of 50 to 80 years old. Most people in this age group require knee replacement surgery as conservative treatments may not be effective for them. However, it should be noted that age is not necessarily a deciding factor for a total knee replacement surgery.


Treatment for pain and discomfort in the knees will begin with conservative methods that include physiotherapy, anti-inflammatory drugs, and cortisone injections. If you have not seen any effect even after a considerable amount of time and are still experiencing pain while doing simple activities or when you’re at rest, you may require knee replacement surgery. Other symptoms may include stiffness, inflammation, and swelling of the joint.

Potential risks and complications associated with knee replacement

Minimally invasive knee replacement surgeries have a success rate of 90 to 95 percent, and the implant stays durable for 10 to 15 years in suitable conditions. However, as knee replacement surgery is a major procedure, there are some potential risks and complications associated with it. Possible risks may include the following. 

  • Deep vein thrombosis
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Infections
  • A fracture after or during the surgery
  • Bleeding in the joint during or post-surgery
  • Instability of the knee cap leading to dislocation
  • Nerve damage leading to numbness or weakness 
  • Ligament or artery damage
  • Pain and stiffness post-surgery
  • Allergic reaction to bone cement
  • Excess bone formation around the knee implant, leading to loss of movement
  • Excess scar tissue buildup
  • Wearing down of implant

The patient should be on the lookout for signs of complications after the surgery. Swelling, bleeding, and redness around the site of operation, and fever can be signs of an infection.  Tenderness, redness, and swelling below the knee, or in the calf or foot may indicate a blood clot in the leg or deep vein thrombosis, while shortness of breath and pain in the chest after surgery can be indicative of pulmonary embolism or blood clot in the lungs.

If the patient suspects the presence of any of the above-given complications, immediate medical attention should be sought. 

Questions you should ask your doctor about Knee Replacement

Is knee replacement surgery the best option for me?
Does my age affect the rate of success of the surgery?
What will happen if I delay the surgery?
Apart from knee replacement surgery, what other options are available for treating arthritis?
How is a minimally invasive knee replacement surgery performed?
What type of knee replacement surgery should I undergo for the best results?
What are the potential risks associated with the surgery?
Is there anything I can do to reduce the chance of complications?
Are there any medical problems like diabetes, high blood pressure, heart diseases, etc. for which I should see my doctor?
Would I require a blood transfusion during or after the surgery?
Should I donate my blood before the surgery so that it can be used for transfusion during the surgery?
What are the chances of infection?
Is there something I can do to ensure the success of the surgery?
Are there any exercises I should do before the surgery to make my muscles stronger?
Should I learn how to use crutches in advance?
How can I get my house ready for when I am discharged from the hospital?
Do I need to stop taking any existing medication for my surgery?
Should I lose some weight before the surgery?
Would I be required to quit alcohol or smoking before the surgery? If yes, where can I find help for doing so?
What is the cost of knee replacement surgery?
Does my insurance cover the cost of surgery?
Do different hospitals have different costs for knee replacement surgery?
How can I find out if my insurance policy covers the cost of knee replacement surgery?
How long will the hospital stay after the surgery?
When will I be discharged from the hospital?
Will my physiotherapy program begin during my hospital stay?
Will I be able to walk independently when I leave the hospital?

Treatment options & cost

Total knee replacement surgery or TKR can cost somewhere between INR 3,20,000 to INR 4,50,000. This cost bracket is only for reference and is not a fixed cost. Factors like the type of implant used, surgical techniques, the fee of hospital and surgeon along with some other things influence the cost of knee replacement surgery.

Insurance coverage for knee replacement surgery

Most insurance companies cover the cost of partial and total knee replacement surgeries. But the exact amount of coverage depends on your health insurance policy. To know the details, it is best that you talk to your insurance provider to discuss the insurance coverage of our surgery. 

Recovery after knee replacement surgery

You will be taken to the observation room after the surgery where your vitals will be monitored by your medical team. During our hospital stay, you will be encouraged to move your foot and leg, and to try to stand or walk with the help of a walking aid. The rehabilitation program will be begun in the hospital and a physiotherapist will be arranged for you. Before your discharge, your doctor will prescribe some antibiotics and painkillers and will give some basic instructions to follow in the recovery period, and your physiotherapist will teach you some exercises for a healthy and quick recovery.

Latest research about Knee Replacement

Cities Where We Treat Knee-replacement


What are the most common signs of knee arthritis?

  • Pain, especially when in motion
  • Limited range of motion
  • Knee stiffness
  • Crackling sounds
  • Buckling or locking of the knee joint
  • Swelling and inflammation


If you are suffering from chronic knee pain that does not go away, get it checked by our orthopedic specialists. 

What are the common causes of knee pain and reduced knee function?

The most common cause of chronic knee pain and reduced mobility and motion of the knee joint is arthritis. Osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and traumatic arthritis are the most common conditions that cause knee pain and affect the function of the knee joint.

How long does a knee replacement last?

In the majority of cases, knee replacement lasts 20 years. 

How long does knee replacement surgery take?

Knee replacement surgery can take between 1 to 2 hours and is usually carried out with an anaesthetic.

Facts and statistics around Knee Replacement

Have a conversation with our best Knee Replacement Surgeons

Before you make up your mind about knee replacement surgery, it is best that you talk with your doctor about all the possible risks and complications. Like any major surgery, there are some risks and complications associated with knee replacement surgeries too, which may include infections, loosening of the implant, or limited range of motion post-surgery. 

Under the right situations, knee replacement surgery can significantly enhance your quality of life. More than 90 percent of the people who undergo knee replacement surgery are able to resume routine life after fully recovering, and don’t face any issues with the replaced knee implant for at least 10 to 15 years.  

But the results are different for every patient. That is why it is important that you discuss all the risks and complications with your doctor before the surgery, and talk about the recovery period and precautions. 

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