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What You Should Consider When Selecting from the Best Knee Surgeons for Your Surgery

Written by Knees and Hips on April 23, 2014

Knee surgery can be a huge relief from pain and immobility for many people, and new surgical techniques have made steady advances in the 10 years. The knee is the largest joint in the body, and takes some of the worst punishment.

The main causative factors for knee problems are different forms of arthritis; post-traumatic, rheumatoid and osteoarthritis, and they all cause damage to the cartilage which makes the joint work as it should.

Arthroscopy has revolutionized knee surgery, allowing extremely detailed views from the inside of the knee. The cameras are modern hi-definition wonders that are inserted through small incisions. These cameras allow a greater understanding of exactly what is happening inside the knee in a way which was not possible before.

Picking the right surgeon can make all the difference between a successful knee surgery and life long pain and suffering. Seeking more than one diagnosis is recommended. There are some factors to take into consideration before deciding which doctor and medical facility to trust your health and life to.

The first thing is to look for a consensus on exactly how much and what the damage is to your knee; some things can be fixed during the arthroscopic surgery, but it may be apparent than an entire knee replacement is necessary without the use of an arthroscopic procedure.

Whether the problem can be addressed by arthroscopic surgery alone or must entail a full or partial knee replacement, the number one question to ask is how much experience a doctor and his team have in the specific type of surgery you will require.

Draw up a detailed list of questions – if possible consult with your family doctor during a visit.

One of the most important questions often overlooked deals with anesthesia. With arthroscopic surgery, it is often possible to do the exploration and micro surgery with nothing but a local anesthetic but the doctor and facilities you choose should be equally adept whether it is local, regional or general anesthesia.

Once again, experience is key, and the higher the level of anesthesia the higher the chances of a complication. It does not happen often, but ask about what experience the team has with adverse anesthesia reactions, and pay attention to which medical facility each doctor uses; some will have admission privileges at different hospitals, so do not be shy about requesting if a different facility can be used.

Usually we have very few choices about the healthcare that is delivered to us; a scheduled surgery actually allows the patient to have some control over the process, and this helps to produce a more satisfactory result.

Make sure to  check online with the different associations, such as the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons or the AMA, get a list of patients from the surgeon and call them to ask about their experiences.

Above all trust your instincts. If the doctor and staff seem dismissive, don’t listen to you and won’t really answer your questions keep searching until you find a surgeon and team that is open and forthcoming.

Do your homework, check credentials and emergency procedures, experience and facilities and get recommendations from your general doctor, friends and family and you can feel much more comfortable about getting a knee surgery.

For more information please contact us at 707-456-3180.