While total knee replacement is considered a pain-relieving procedure, even the American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons says it may not relieve all pain, and there is a possibility of residual stiffness and swelling.
Anecdotally, Dr. Paul Mogannam, medical director of Flexogenix®, can attest to many of their patients presenting with pain that continues way past surgery.
And what if you’re one of them?
Complicated complications after a knee replacement
Once the knee replacement has been done, and if pain continues beyond the recovery period, treatment becomes a little trickier. “You can’t do injections into a replaced joint,” says Dr. Mogannam.
- Metal can’t be treated the same way.
- There’s the increased risk for infection.
- Plus, it’s difficult to discern exactly why the pain is continuing in the first place, although nerves may be involved.
But there’s still hope.
A course of customized physical therapy is often initially recommended. At Flexogenix®, the certified physical therapists work directly with the board-certified physicians to address patient’s specific complaints.
And if that doesn’t work?
Giving pain the cold shoulder
Always evolving and incorporating cutting-edge treatment options, Flexogenix® now offers genicular nerve blocks. “It’s very similar to cryoneuromodulation except that different nerves are targeted,” says Dr. Mogannam. “It’s been beneficial to patients with knee replacements who are experiencing post-surgical pain.”
Dr. Mogannam says that cryoneuromodulation had an efficacy rate of between 50 and 80 percent. But with genicular nerve blocks, the success rate climbs significantly.
- The patient is first given a test or diagnostic block. A positive response to the numbing agent indicates he or she is a good candidate for the procedure.
- Local anesthesia is administered
- A small probe is inserted, which is comprised of a hollow cannula that contains a smaller inner lumen.
- The pressurized coolant travels down the lumen and expands into the tip of the cannula, which is cooled by the expansion of the pressurized liquid..
- The coolant stays within the cannula; however, the tip of the cannula then freezes the targeted superior medial genicular nerve, superior lateral genicular nerve and inferior medial genicular nerve located near the bone and which frequently are the source of joint pain after knee replacement surgery.
Including prep time, the procedure takes about 20 minutes. The conduction of pain is typically blocked for three to six months.
Imagine: pain-free months to play 18 holes of golf or frolic with the grandchildren. Contact Flexogenix® today to give yourself the gift of post-surgical comfort.