Many people suffering from Osteoarthritis follow a similar path. The level of pain and suffering, they must endure, escalates over the years and eventually becomes too much to bear. People suffering from severe, end-stage Osteoarthritis are often forced to resort to joint replacement surgery. In recent years, joint replacement has become the de facto method for treating severe Osteoarthritis; most patients respond well to the procedure and regain significant use of their joints.
There are a number of issues with joint replacements. Joint replacement parts are not intended to be permanent; most last for anywhere between 10 and 20 years before requiring another replacement. While this generally works for elderly patients, younger people often need further replacements and can only withstand a few in their lifetime.
Joint replacement surgery is also accompanied with a high risk of infection. The incidence of post-operative infection in joint replacement is higher than in many other surgeries because a known foreign body is left behind; this foreign body is the mechanical joint. Joint replacement is reported to be painful, has a prolonged recovery time and requires extensive physical therapy after the surgery. On top of that, joint replacement surgery is an expensive procedure with many risks and complications. It should be and is regarded as a last resort treatment and not a primary intervention.