Preparing for a knee replacement operation

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What is a knee replacement?

A knee replacement is an operation in which your knee joint is replaced with an artificial joint.

What type of anaesthetic will I have?

There are two main types of anaesthetic given for this type of surgery:

  • general anaesthetic – anaesthetic drugs make you unconscious, so you are completely unaware throughout your operation.
  • spinal anaesthetic – the lower half of your body is numbed by an injection in your lower back. This can be given alone, with sedation (medicine to relax you) or in addition to a general anaesthetic to help with pain relief after the operation. A nerve block might also be used to reduce pain after surgery.

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Preparing for a knee replacement operation