Over one million knee and hip operations are performed annually in the United States contributing to rising health care costs. One study concluded that patients discharged to their home with outpatient rehabilitation suffered fewer post operative complications than patients transferred to a rehab facility postoperatively. An Australian study concluded that patients who performed a home exercise program recover just as well as those in rehab facilities.
After Knee or Hip Replacement, No Place Like Home
By JANE E. BRODY | Read Entire Article
Growing numbers of Americans are outliving their joints. More than a million operations are done annually to replace worn-out knees and hips, and that number is expected to skyrocket in the coming decades as the population ages.<
Joint replacements typically restore lost mobility, making it possible for people to get health-enhancing exercise and enjoy countless activities that require movement.
As someone who has had both knees replaced, I can attest to the vast improvement in quality of life the surgery bestowed. I can walk and cycle for miles and swim daily without pain, and I can sit through operas, plays and concerts without stiffness.
I can also underscore the general futility of some popular efforts to postpone needed joint replacements, including injections of hyaluronic acid and corticosteroids, braces, shoe inserts and opioid painkillers like OxyContin and fentanyl, none of which are recommended by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.