Our Eye Center has answers to your vision health questions. Visit today.
by Katharine Greider, AARP Bulletin, August 19, 2008
Recovery from knee or hip replacement can be difficult and long, but in the end older patients get significant relief from the pain and debility of osteoarthritis, confirms a study by doctors at Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
The study, published July 14 in the Archives of Internal Medicine, followed 174 patients age 65 and older with severe osteoarthritis. On average they scored 56 on a commonly used 100-point scale of osteoarthritis symptoms; those who had surgery to replace a knee or hip enjoyed a substantial, 24-point drop on the scale a year later.
The rewards were hard-won. Nearly 40 percent reported pain more than four weeks after the procedure, and just half the patients were walking independently in fewer than 12 days. The median time for regaining the ability to perform household chores was 49 days.
The detailed findings on recovery are “exactly the kind of information people are longing for,” says Gillian Hawker, M.D., an osteoarthritis researcher at Women’s College Hospital in Toronto. Joint replacement is an effective treatment that’s underused by older people, especially women, in part because they “can’t fathom how they are going to manage postoperatively,” she says.
Please leave your comment below.
You must be logged in to leave a comment.
Visit the AARP state page for information about events, news and resources near you.
Free chapter from AARP’s book by Dr. Sanjay Gupta
Members save 15% on medical alert service.
WW will help you build a customized weight loss plan
AARP members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.
You are leaving AARP.org and going to the website of our trusted provider. The provider’s terms, conditions and policies apply. Please return to AARP.org to learn more about other benefits.
Your email address is now confirmed.
You'll start receiving the latest news, benefits, events, and programs related to AARP's mission to empower people to choose how they live as they age.
You can also manage your communication preferences by updating your account at anytime. You will be asked to register or log in.
In the next 24 hours, you will receive an email to confirm your subscription to receive emails
related to AARP volunteering. Once you confirm that subscription, you will regularly
receive communications related to AARP volunteering. In the meantime, please feel free
to search for ways to make a difference in your community at