Knee

UR Medicine offers the widest range of treatment options in Upstate New York. In many cases, we can treat your knee pain with medication, physical therapy, or injection therapies. In other cases, surgery may be required.

UR Medicine surgeons are all fellowship-trained and specialize in joint replacements, minimally invasive arthroscopic surgeries, and the treatment of orthopaedic fractures. In other cases, surgery may be required. If knee pain is interfering with your everyday life, call (585) 275-5321 for a consultation with a UR Medicine joint surgeon.

Knee pain can force you to give up activities you enjoy. Many medical conditions can lead to knee pain, so it’s important to get an accurate diagnosis before you make a decision about therapy, treatment, or surgery.

Osteoarthritis in your knee is the most common condition that leads to knee replacement surgery. Knee pain may also be related to ligament injuries (ACL, PCL and LCL), torn meniscus, bursitis in the kneecap, runner’s knee, and fractures, but these conditions do not generally result in total knee replacement surgery.

We have the widest range of treatment options in Upstate New York, and your best options will be discussed with you. In many cases, knee pain can be treated with pain medication, physical therapy, or injection therapies. Others require knee surgery:

  • Total Knee Replacement. This is the right option for people with severe osteoarthritis in the knee joint. The surgeon removes the damaged bone and cartilage and replaces it with a combination of artificial parts specific to your needs.
  • Partial Knee Replacement. This procedure may be appropriate for patients who are too young for a total knee replacement, or who have arthritis in just one area of the joint.
  • Knee Revision Surgery. In the unusual case of an implant loosening or wearing out, or if a patient has further bone loss or a fracture, our surgeons can perform revision surgery to replace an artificial knee.
  • Arthroscopic Knee Surgery. In this minimally invasive procedure, the surgeon makes small portal incisions and inserts a tiny camera to find the problem. The surgeon then inserts instruments through the portal to remove debris or make repairs. This is widely used for knee ligament repair.
  • Knee Osteotomy. Some patients—particularly young athletes—may develop osteoarthritis because of strenuous physical activity that damages just one side of the knee. A surgeon can relieve pressure on the knee joint by cutting and realigning the bones around the knee.

We break down your journey into manageable steps, which we cover in our Guidebook to Hip and Knee Total Joint Replacement and Total Joint Replacement Education Class, and highlight below:

Your surgeon’s office will provide you with a packet of information and necessary forms to complete. This will include instructions to prepare for your surgery, information about anesthesia and your Presurgical Screening Appointment, as well as your surgical pre-admission form that you will bring to your Presurgical Screening Appointment.

The Evarts Joint Center offers a free presurgical class for patients who are scheduled to have joint replacement surgery at the Evarts Joint Center. So you are well informed and prepared for a successful surgery, joint replacement patients are required to attend our free total joint replacement class. Not only must you attend, it is equally important that a member of your support team attend.

You'll find out about:

  • The joint replacement procedure
  • How to prepare for surgery
  • Anesthesia options
  • Your hospital stay
  • Pain management
  • The recovery process
  • Equipment you may need after surgery

To sign up or to ask questions about the class, call (585) 784-2966. You can also download the class presentation materials.

If you are not yet scheduled for a surgery, but joint pain is interfering with your everyday life, call (585) 275-5321 for a consultation with one of our joint surgeons or learn more about the Evarts Joint Center experience.

Our scheduler will call you to arrange a Presurgical Screening Appointment, which you will attend approximately 3-4 weeks before your surgery.

The appointment will take about 3 hours, and will include: blood work, urine sample, EKG, X-rays (if requested by your surgeon), health history screening, presurgical education, and MyChart signup.

Bring the following with you to your Presurgical Screening Appointment:

  • Your surgeon’s name, date of surgery, and type of surgery
  • Medication names, dosages, how often and time(s) of day you take them; this includes vitamins and over-the-counter medications
  • Insurance cards, photo ID, health care proxy or living will (if you have one); if you do not have a health care proxy form, we can provide one
  • Your surgical pre-admission form received from your surgeon’s office

Presurgical Screening is located on the main level (Floor 2) of the hospital. Enter the hospital through the main lobby and check in at the information desk.

Weeks before your surgery, get your home ready!

  • Clear clutter out of living areas.
  • Remove throw rugs.
  • Put nightlights in your hallways and bathrooms.
  • Determine if you need to move a bed downstairs.
  • If your mattress is on the floor, place it in a frame.
  • Check stairway railings to be sure they are secure and stable.
  • Stock up on healthy foods, and make and freeze meals to have handy for easy preparation.
  • Catch up on laundry and housekeeping.

Before your surgery date, it is important to be familiar with the exercises you will do in the hospital and at home. To speed your recovery, we recommend that you perform each exercise 10 times, three times a day, if able to do so pain-free. If you are in too much pain, simply familiarize yourself with the exercises.

Exercises for Knees

 

You’ll receive compassionate care in the comfort of a community hospital, backed by the leading-edge technology and research at UR Medicine. Our entire team is focused on your success, made easier by our dedicated state-of-the-art orthopaedic operating rooms, joint surgery recovery unit, and rehabilitation gym.

All UR Medicine joint replacement surgeries are performed in Highland’s dedicated, state-of-the-art orthopaedic operating rooms at the Evarts Joint Center.

On the day of your surgery, you’ll go to the Highland Surgery Center. The elapsed time from operating room to leaving the post-anesthesia care unit is usually about 4 hours.

After surgery, you will go to your room in the Evarts Joint Center, again dedicated to our Orthopaedic patients.

Your companions can track your progress and will be notified when you have arrived in your room.

Once in your hospital room, your nurse will assess your needs and review your individualized care plan. Your nurses will be your primary point of contact and will start you on your road to recovery with understanding, compassion, and a steady drive to get you back to a life in motion.

A Patient Care Technician (PCT) will assist the nurses with vital signs and hygiene routine, and can help you get in and out of bed.

Your Physical Therapist (PT) will help you do your exercises, walk, go up and down stairs, and get in and out of a bed and a chair.

Your Occupational Therapists (OT) will focus on Activities of Daily Living (ADL) that help you achieve independence, such as dressing and personal hygiene. Getting stronger at these activities will help you make a smooth transition to home.

A social worker will work with you to discuss your discharge, and your nurse will review your discharge instructions with you.

The social worker will provide information on home care agencies. Please note that your insurance plan may dictate which agency you choose and what is covered. A Home Care Agency Coordinator from your chosen home care agency will visit with you in the hospital to arrange services and delivery of needed equipment for home use.

Some patients need more care and a skilled nursing facility (a nursing home that provides rehab services) may be recommended. Your insurance plan will dictate whether a skilled nursing facility is an option for you. You should discuss your coverage with your insurance provider.

You Make the Difference! You will play a huge role in the success of your surgery and your recovery. It’s important that you be proactive and participate in your physical therapy program. The more committed and enthusiastic you are, the quicker your improvement will be.

During your first few weeks at home, you will adapt what you’ve learned at the hospital to your own setting.

A few key reminders for when you first return home:

  • You must protect yourself from falling and keep your new joint in safe positions while you heal.
  • You might need to use adaptive equipment to help you with tasks.
  • You should plan for someone to stay with you for several days when you first go home.
  • You will not be able to drive until your doctor says it is okay, so you will need someone to take you to your first doctor’s appointment and physical therapy.

It is normal to experience discomfort when doing your exercises and you may need to take pain medication prior to doing your physical therapy exercises. It is important that you perform your assigned exercises exactly as instructed by your physical therapist and with the appropriate number of repetitions. Do not add or subtract any exercises!

Here the are answers to questions we have heard most often about knee surgery. Please feel free to contact us to get your specific questions answered.

Your time in surgery is about 2-3 hours, but the actual elapsed time from operating room to the post- anesthesia care unit (PACU), where you will recover from anesthesia, is usually about 3-4 hours.

Most patients will be discharged 1-2 days after surgery.

Though there is an adjustment period, you will get 80% of the benefit in the first three months.

Your surgeon will let you know when it is safe for you to drive. Although everyone heals differently, a safe assumption is that you shouldn’t plan on driving for at least 4 weeks.

Typically the modern replacement joints we use will last at least 15-20 years. Many factors influence the joint’s life, including your activity level and overall l health.


To review a longer list of questions and answers about your surgery and your Highland experience, visit our Frequently Asked Questions Page.