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Rediscovering Mobility: When Surgery Delivers a New Lease of Life on the Farm

Rediscovering Mobility: When Surgery Delivers a New Lease of Life on the Farm | UPMC Ireland

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Feeling changes in your joints as you age is normal. However, some changes can result in discomfort and limited mobility. For someone working daily on a farm, these issues can significantly impact your ability to perform tasks efficiently and quickly.

With knee pain specifically, it is easy to brush it off as a normal part of ageing. However, delaying treatment can prolong the issue. Early intervention allows healthcare professionals to address the problem, offering better outcomes for patients and minimising the need to be missing from the farm for long periods of time.

Patrick and Denis Roche | Dairy Farmers, Wexford
Partial Knee Replacement

Patrick and Denis Roche, Wexford.

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Putting It Off

Fear of being advised to rest or reduce physical activity, can often cause farmers to avoid seeking medical advice. However, contrary to what you might think, the goal of medical professionals is to keep you active for as long as possible. While most knee pain does not require surgical intervention, when it does, advancements in medical technology and expert rehabilitation support means there are surgical solutions that can restore mobility and improve quality of life, without enduring significant recovery times.

Partial Knee Replacements

If you're experiencing persistent knee pain or stiffness, a simple consultation with your GP or physiotherapist can help you explore your options.

While physiotherapy is often a first line of treatment for many joint pain issues, sometimes it cannot resolve the issue alone. If there is persistent localised pain and limited mobility, a partial knee replacement may be recommended.

Unlike total knee replacements, which involve replacing the entire knee joint, partial knee replacements preserve healthy tissue and bone, resulting in quicker recovery and improved function.

One of the primary advantages of partial knee replacement is its ability to restore mobility and alleviate pain while preserving more of the original knee joint. This minimally invasive procedure often leads to shorter hospital stays, reduced post-operative pain, improved knee function, and faster recovery times compared to total knee replacement. By targeting the affected area, partial knee replacements offer patients a chance to regain an active lifestyle and for farmers, or those whose job requires a lot of movement, this can have a huge positive impact on both physical and mental health.

The Role of Physiotherapy

While surgery is a crucial step in the journey to improved knee function, the road to full recovery doesn't end there. Physiotherapy plays a vital role in helping patients regain strength, flexibility, and range of motion both before and following a partial knee replacement. Through tailored exercises and rehabilitation techniques, physiotherapists work closely with patients to optimise their preparation for, and recovery from surgery, allowing for a smooth transition back to normal activities, on the farm or elsewhere.

Seek Help When You Are in Pain

If knee pain is impacting your daily activities, help is available. Ignoring the pain, or persevering through it, may lead to complications which can potentially lengthen recovery time and the time it takes you to get back to life on the farm.

Partial knee replacements can offer hope to farmers struggling with knee pain and limited mobility. By seeking advice early, exploring your surgical and non-surgical options, and engaging with physiotherapy, significant quality of life improvements can be achieved.

With the right treatment and support, you can rediscover the joy of movement without pain.

Read more about UPMC’s orthopaedic care for farmers.