Advances in Knee Replacements

This new design allows surgeons to preserve the important central ligaments of the knee called the anterior and posterior cruciate ligaments. This design should allow a knee replacement to move, respond, and feel more like a normal knee.

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The Anterior Hip

Patients are being told by both surgeons and orthopedic implant companies that Anterior Hip Replacement approach offers something unique and different compared to other approaches. This is a flatly untrue, unscientifically supported myth...

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Outpatient Joint Replacement

With Outpatient Joint Replacement Surgery, patients are able to return home the same day as the procedure. Patients also begin physical therapy within hours of surgery.

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Osteoarthritis Treatment in Portland, OR

Osteoarthritis Treatment in Portland, ORAffecting millions of patients, osteoarthritis is a "wear-and-tear" condition that weakens and wears down the components of a joint. Osteoarthritis usually affects weight-bearing joints, such as the hip, knee, and shoulder, with smaller, non-weight-bearing joints being less often affected. Osteoarthritis causes pain, limits a joint's range of motion, and causes joint stiffness, making movement difficult and uncomfortable.

Patients with arthritis have a number of options for managing the condition's symptoms. Non-surgical solutions, including physical therapy, rehabilitation, anti-inflammatory medication, and injection therapy, can help minimize arthritic pain and strengthen the supporting muscles. While these treatments can help reduce the day-to-day symptoms, arthritis may continue to progress, becoming more painful and debilitating as time goes on.

For patients whose arthritis cannot be managed through these conservative options, joint replacement surgery may be the most appropriate treatment. Joint replacement is considered to be one of the most successful orthopedic operations performed today, and is a safe and effective way to restore joint function and minimize pain.

The Role of Cartilage in Protecting Joints

To protect joints from excessive stress, a soft piece of tissue, known as cartilage, lines the ends of connecting bones. Cartilage acts as a shock absorber for joints, and reduces the effect of friction on the bones. Cartilage also provides a smooth surface for the bones, allowing them to glide through their natural range of motion without causing any pain.

Over time, cartilage becomes brittle and loses its ability to protect the joint. Without the protective cartilage, normal movement of the affected joint will cause pain and discomfort. This natural degeneration leads to reduced range of motion, joint stiffness, and reduced health-related quality of life.

Treating Arthritis Pain

Before seeking surgical relief, patients should attempt to treat their arthritis conservatively. Early cases of arthritis can be successfully treated through conservative means, including physical therapy, rehabilitation, anti-inflammatory medications, and injection therapy. Conservative treatments aim to manage the painful symptoms of arthritis and restore the joint's function.

While many patients may be able to successfully manage arthritis symptoms and live an unencumbered life, these nonsurgical treatments may be insufficient for more severe cases of arthritis. When pain and immobility persist despite the treatments outlined above, joint replacement surgery may be the best option for alleviating musculoskeletal pain.

Joint Replacement Surgery

Joint replacement was introduced to the United States in the 1960s, quickly becoming one of the most frequently performed procedures in America. Removing the diseased joint and putting a prosthetic implant in its place significantly diminishes the pain and immobility associated with arthritis. Hip replacement and knee replacement are the most common, due to their nature as weight-bearing joints.

Knee Replacement Surgery

The knee is the body's largest joint, comprised of the femur (thighbone), tibia (shinbone), and patella (kneecap). Knee arthritis causes pain whenever patients move through normal range of motion, including walking, climbing stairs, and cycling.

Surgical options for knee arthritis include total knee replacement surgery, partial knee replacement, and MAKOplasty® for partial knee replacement, a minimally invasive, robotic-assisted surgical technique. Depending on the patient's anatomy and arthritic disposition, Dr. Ballard can help determine the best treatment option for the patient's unique case.

Hip Replacement Surgery

Because the hips bear the body's weight when sitting, standing, and walking, many patients will develop experience joint pain and osteoarthritis as a result. Hip arthritis makes many routine activities, such as getting up from a chair, extremely painful.

Surgical options for hip arthritis include total hip replacement surgery and minimally invasive hip replacement. As with knee replacement surgery, Dr. Ballard can help the patient determine the best surgical option for the unique case of arthritis.

Patients undergoing joint replacement surgery may require several weeks of post-operative physical therapy and rehabilitation to accelerate recovery. Within 3-6 weeks of surgery, patients should be able to resume most normal activities, such as walking, climbing stairs, and bathing.

Joint Replacement Surgery in Portland, OR

Dr. James Ballard is a Board-certified, Fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon practicing in Portland OR, with offices located in Oregon City and Tualatin. Dr. Ballard specializes in joint reconstruction, minimally invasive hip replacement, robotic-assisted surgery, and custom-fit knee replacement. For more information about treating arthritis, schedule an appointment with Dr. Ballard to discuss potential conservative or surgical treatment options.