Female Joint Replacement

You love going for long walks, playing with your grandchildren, and working in your garden. But the pain in your knee is becoming unbearable. You simply can’t do the things you love anymore.

Sound familiar? It’s time to take back those activities that damaged knees have stolen from you.

WellSpan Orthopedics – Hanover and UPMC Pinnacle Hanover offer the Zimmer “Gender Solutions Knee” implant. Contoured specifically for a woman’s anatomy, the Gender Knee allows for a better fit, greater flexibility, and more natural movement. Theo new genderspecific knee implants are narrower and thinner than those used for a man. For some women, the gender specific implant is the best fit. In other cases, the traditional knee implant may be better.

According to orthopedic surgeon Dr. Samuel D’Agata, the Gender Knee was developed because all knees are different, and consumers want options. “Women comprise two-thirds of the 400,000 knee replacements performed,” he noted, “even though they tend to wait longer to have the procedure done.” He said postponing knee replacement limits the years of benefit which could dramatically improve one’s quality of life.

Dr. D’Agata added that people in their 40’s and 50’s, particularly those who have been very active in exercise and sports, are now looking at knee replacement, so they can continue being active. “Baby Boomers in general are more customer savvy,” he said. “They want to maintain an active lifestyle.”

However, he pointed out that the typical patient has problems with simple walking, not with vigorous exercise or sports. And, knee replacements in general, last longer than in the past. It is not unreasonable to expect them to last over 20 years.

A unicompartmental knee replacement, which only replaces the bad half of a knee is also available. The advantages of this minimallyinvasive surgery include smaller incisions, a shorter hospital stay, and quicker recovery.

In either case, a new knee can help individuals get back to doing the things they enjoy and back on their feet sooner than they thought possible. Joann Neiderer of Hanover is a perfect example. An avid runner and Adventure Race participant, Neiderer’s severe knee pain drove her to seek treatment.

“I am glad I chose to have the knee replacement. Without it, I would not have been able to run anymore,” said Neiderer. “Running is a big part of my life, and without it, I would feel incomplete.” Thanks to the surgery and rehab, she is once again running four miles at a time, with no pain in her knee. She recommends the knee replacement for those who wish to maintain their activity level and quality of life.

If a painful knee is slowing you down, contact WellSpan Orthopedics – Hanover at (717) 632-5259.

Learn more about Orthopedics at UPMC Pinnacle Hanover.