As a hip and knee replacement surgeon, many people will come to see me already knowing they need a hip or knee replaced. However, when further conservative options exist, I will direct their care to non-surgical treatments. I see about 5,000 patient visits a year with 1,200 of them as new patients. Since I typically perform 400 replacements per year, about 1 in 3 new patients choose surgery. In other words, not every patient who walks through the door is a candidate for surgery. We look at their options and take the course of treatments that we decide works best for them.
- Pain and disability are our guides. When pain is poorly managed or lifestyle changes become unacceptable surgery becomes indicted.
- X-ray appearance is only supportive of the diagnosis. It does not determine when surgery should be performed.
- Age is not a criteria
- There is no such thing as waiting too long.