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Doctor insights on: Infection Following Knee Replacement

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Dr. David Fisher
Board Certified, Orthopedic Surgery
33 years in practice
178K people helped
1

1
What should I do if I have an infection following a total knee replacement?

What should I do if I have an infection following a total knee replacement?

See your surgeon: Infection is a serious condition in a total knee replacement and needs urgent treatment. If it is caught early, a surgical washout of the joint with antibiotic therapy may cure the infection. If not, the implants may need to be removed in order to cure the infection. Once accomplished, a total knee may be redone to restore knee function. ...Read more

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Dr. Ward Dean
Board Certified
37 years in practice
804K people helped
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Dr. William Singer
9 doctors shared insights

Infection (Definition)

Infections are invasions of some other organism (fungus, bacteria, parasite) or viruses into places where they do not belong. For instance, we have normal gut bacteria that live within us without causing problems; however, when those penetrate the bowel wall and enter the bloodstream, ...Read more


Dr. Barry Waldman
Board Certified, Orthopedic Reconstructive Surgery
23 years in practice
519K people helped
2

2
How can you know if you have an infection in your knee after having a partial knee replacement?

How can you know if you have an infection in your knee after having a partial knee replacement?

Pain and Swelling: Infections in joint replacements can be very hard to diagnose. Generally, doctors with use blood tests, radiographic tests, aspirations (a tap of the fluid in the knee) and some times biopsies to determine if there is an infection. ...Read more

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Dr. Ward Dean
Board Certified
37 years in practice
804K people helped
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Dr. Frederick Buechel
Board Certified, Orthopedic Reconstructive Surgery
20 years in practice
1M people helped
3

3
How would you know if you have an infection in your knee after having a partial knee replacement?

How would  you know if you have an infection in your knee after having a partial knee replacement?

Red, pain, drainage: The common signs of an infection can include the following: -fever -redness around the incision -swelling with redness -drainage from a red and swollen knee -pain with weight bearing in a red swollen knee -blood test that show an elevated WBC count, elevated c-reactive protein, elevated esr - the gold standard is to drain fluid out of the knee and send it to the lab for gram stain and culture. ...Read more

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Dr. Frederick Buechel
Board Certified, Orthopedic Reconstructive Surgery
20 years in practice
1M people helped
4

4
How do you know if you have an infection in your knee after a partial knee replacement?

How do you know if you have an infection in your knee after a partial knee replacement?

Red swollen hot pain: The clinical findings that are concerning for an infected knee are: 1. Redness/pinkness around the incision or knee. 2. Increased swelling around knee 3. Increased pain with bending or weight bearing 4. Fever, chills, lethargy, loss of appetite 5. A knee draining fluid from the incision or a new hole 6. Blood tests with elevated wbc, crp, esr. See your surgeon with any concern asap, don't wait! ...Read more

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Dr. Ward Dean
Board Certified
37 years in practice
804K people helped
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Dr. Scott Russinoff
Board Certified, Orthopedic Reconstructive Surgery
15 years in practice
21K people helped
5

5
I had a knee replacement a year ago and the same knee suddenly got hot and swollen, should I be worried about an infection?

I had a knee replacement a year ago and the same knee suddenly got hot and swollen, should I be worried about an infection?

Yes: You definitely need to worry about infection! see your surgeon who will probably order some bloodwork and aspirate your knee to have the fluid aspirated. ...Read more

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Dr. Shawn Dalton-Bethea
Board Certified, Pain Management
14 years in practice
358K people helped
6

6
How do I know that my doctor has chosen the knee replacement of a manufacturer with the fewest problems, i.e. fsilure, infection, etc. Do I have any?

How do I know that my doctor has chosen the knee replacement of a manufacturer with the fewest problems, i.e. fsilure, infection, etc.  Do I have any?

Knee arthroplasty: Your orthopedic surgeon should be very open to your valid concerns. She or he should be willing to tell you which manufacturer they prefer and why. Then you can do your own research to "validate" what was stated in your patient encounter. I would hope that they prefer placing hardware that has the best outcome for you. ...Read more

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Dr. John Dearborn
Board Certified, Orthopedic Reconstructive Surgery
24 years in practice
177K people helped
7

7
How to determine if I have an infection in my knee after having a partial knee replacement?

How to determine if I have an infection in my knee after having a partial knee replacement?

Pain, swelling fever: A bacterial infection always produces pain and swelling. A severe one with strep or staph aureus will create a hot knee with fever and constitutional symptoms. Taking fluid out of the knee for analysis is the most definitive test. ...Read more

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Dr. Peter Ihle
Board Certified, Orthopedic Surgery
48 years in practice
6M people helped
8

8
Total knee replacement because of mrsa, i may need a revision because of reoccurring cyst, will 2nd time be as hard? No infection now 1st is cemented

Very tough? : If u mean u need a revision because of MRSA infection in the knee now, the process is long. When the implants r removed cultures r taken ; no new implants. Antibiotic impregnated cement is left in ; u r treated with the proper antibiotics. When CRP ; other studies return to normal, the area may b aspirated ; cultured again ; if clean u then can talk 2 ur surgeon about the next step. ...Read more

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Dr. Tracy Lovell
Board Certified, Rheumatology
15 years in practice
6M people helped
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Dr. Virginia Klaas
Board Certified, Nuclear Medicine
26 years in practice
88K people helped
10

10
I had a bone scan on knee replacement feb, 2012. My gp said report said could be infection, loosening or trauma. Please help me understand.

Needs correlation: A bone scan looks at the metabolism around the replacement. If there is lots of uptake, that means there is lots of bone turn over. Unfortunately several different things can cause increased turn over..Like infection, a loose prosthesis or even recent trauma and fracture. This must be assessed along with symptoms and possibly blood work. ...Read more

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Dr. Frederick Buechel
400 doctors shared insights

Knee Replacement (Definition)

It is when a surgeon removes and exchanges some are all of the componets of your knee. The bottom end of the thigh bone(femur), the upper end of the shin bone(tibia) and the undersurface ...Read more


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Dr. Ward Dean
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37 years in practice
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