Getting Help With My Back

Conditions That May Necessitate Joint Replacement Surgery

by Renee Ruiz

Certain medical conditions can cause severe pain in your hips and knees. Pain can be accompanied by inflammation, limited mobility, redness, increased temperatures over the affected area, and diminished range of motion. If you have one of the following conditions, your physician may refer you to a physician that offers joint replacement services to learn more about your surgical treatment options.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis can cause extreme joint pain and inflammation. Some people who have rheumatoid arthritis are at risk for falls as a result of severe joint pain and weakness. In addition to pain and inflammation, rheumatoid arthritis can cause joint destruction. If your joints become damaged as a result of rheumatoid arthritis, replacing the diseased knee or hip may enhance the quality of your life.

Osteoarthritis can also cause joint pain and inflammation, and in severe cases, significant joint damage. The symptoms of osteoarthritis are typically localized to the affected joints, while rheumatoid arthritis can also cause systemic symptoms such as fever, muscle pain, severe fatigue, an increased risk for infections, and suppressed immune function.

Rheumatoid arthritis is considered an autoimmune disorder; however, osteoarthritis is not. Joint replacement surgery may also eliminate the need for pain medications, which can cause significant side effects. 


Osteoporosis is a degenerative bone disease that is common in postmenopausal women. It is commonly caused by declining estrogen levels that occur during the menopausal years; however, it can also be caused by parathyroid disease, hormonal imbalances, smoking, and certain medications.

It causes brittle bones as a result of decreased bone density, and in addition to an increased risk for fractures, osteoporosis can lead to joint damage. If your physician suspects that you have osteoporosis, he or she may recommend a bone density test, a complete blood count, a chemistry profile blood test, and blood tests to evaluate the health of your parathyroid gland and thyroid gland.

If your knees or hips have lost significant bone density, your doctor may recommend that you undergo joint replacement surgery. While joint replacement surgery will help relieve your pain, the underlying cause of your osteoporosis will need to be determined and treated to prevent further progression of your disease.

If you suffer from joint pain as a result of rheumatoid arthritis or osteoporosis, make an appointment with your healthcare provider. After a comprehensive examination, he or she will determine if you are a good candidate for joint replacement surgery. 

To learn more, contact a resource that offers joint replacement services.