Hip and knee pain can interfere with your everyday life, making activities like bending, climbing stairs, or even walking difficult, if not impossible. Nonsurgical treatment may help, but in some cases, joint replacement surgery may be recommended to relieve joint pain and improve the patient’s lifestyle.
Dr. Meneghini specializes in hip and knee replacements to relieve joint pain that has not improved with nonsurgical treatment. There are several conditions that can contribute to hip and knee pain, and could eventually lead to the recommendation for joint replacement surgery.
Arthritis is one of the top causes of joint pain in the hips and knees. There are different types of arthritis that commonly affect the hips and knees.
Osteoarthritis is a degenerative type of arthritis that commonly affects the hips and knees. Over time, the cartilage that lines our joints can wear away, eventually causing the bones to rub together. This can lead to pain and stiffness in the joint. The bone may begin to grow outward, forming bone spurs.
Because joint damage from osteoarthritis generally progresses over time, it is more common for people over the age of 50 to require a hip or knee replacement due to this condition. However, younger people can still be affected by osteoarthritis. In fact, Dr. Meneghini is one of the few surgeons who specializes in hip replacements for younger patients, including teenagers and adolescents affected by congenital or acquired hip conditions.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory type of arthritis. It is a chronic condition that can attack multiple joints throughout the body. The synovium is a thin layer of tissue that lines the hip and knee joints. It secretes a small amount of fluid to lubricate the joint. Rheumatoid arthritis causes the synovium to become inflamed and thickened, leading to pain and stiffness in the joint. It also causes the body to attack and destroy the healthy cartilage that surrounds the joint.
Rheumatoid arthritis is often symmetrical; often both hips or both knees are affected. Unlike osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis affects people of all ages and often shows signs in early adulthood.
Posttraumatic arthritis can develop after an injury that damages the joint surface, such as a broken bone. In the knees, instability caused by meniscal tears and ligament injuries can lead to arthritis down the road.
Osteonecrosis occurs when a segment of bone loses its blood supply. It can occur in any bone, but most often affects the hips and knees. Blood supply may be lost due to injuries, fractures, obesity, steroid therapy, or other causes. Osteonecrosis can destroy the bone and lead to severe osteoarthritis if left untreated. In the hip, the ball portion of the joint can become damaged. In the knee, osteonecrosis may be limited to one section, or compartment of the knee. In the early stages of osteonecrosis, it can be treated with nonsurgical methods. However, if osteonecrosis progresses to the later stages, surgery may be recommended.
Total hip replacement is often recommended if there is severe damage to the femoral head, the "ball" portion of the joint. Depending on whether or not the damage is limited to one part of the knee, either a total or partial knee replacement may be recommended.
Patients with conditions that weaken the bone like osteoporosis or cancer are more susceptible to hip fractures. In older patients with damage to the femoral head, a hip replacement may be the best option if blood supply is lost as a result of the injury.
Surgical Treatment for Joint Pain in the Indianapolis Area
Dr. Meneghini specializes in hip and knee replacements to relieve joint pain and help patients return to their everyday activities. If your hip or knee pain has not improved with nonsurgical treatment, surgery may be an option for you. If you would like to schedule an appointment for an evaluation with Dr. Meneghini, please contact our office at (317) 688-5980.