A 101-year-old woman now holds the Guinness Book of World Records title for being the oldest person ever to receive a total knee replacement, according to a recent news article from the Preston Citizen. Although it’s probably not a title she would have wished to have, considering it all stemmed from a serious fall in which she broke her hip, the surgery marks a notable feat for the medical community.
Prior to the fall accident, the woman had been dealing with serious knee pain for many years. Doctors felt there was no choice but to do a total hip replacement procedure if she was ever going to walk again, even with the assistance of a walker. After the hip replacement surgery, she was able to move the hip joint again, but she was having a lot of difficulty healing. The reason for this was due to her knee trouble. With the knee also being very week and deteriorated, she was unable to walk normally, and this was causing her to not heal properly following the total hip replacement procedure.
She had tried to treat her knee over the years with non-surgical methods like physical therapy, cortisone injections, and other similar methods, and, while many of these treatments helped to somewhat to alleviate the pain, none of them proved to be a realistic long-term solution. It was due to this treatment history that her orthopedic surgeon suggested having a total knee replacement operation, even though her age was so advanced. There are various reasons doctors will not typically do a surgery like this on a patient who is so old. One major reason is that the older a person is, the more dangerous general anesthesia can become. Many patients will have to have a spinal block similar to what is done with an epidural during labor, and the patient is awake during the procedure.
Despite the risks, including the increased risks of infection, the patient decided to undergo the procedure even at her age. While there is not a special book for surgical records, the doctor and patient joked that they could be in the Guinness Book of World Records. As it turned out, that is exactly where this event was recorded. She is said to have recovered well, even though she is not fully healed, and is glad she decided to undergo the total knee replacement.
While it seems that everything went well for this patient, as our Boston knee replacement injury lawyers have seen in far too many cases, if the artificial knee replacement device itself was defectively designed, there is a good chance the device will fail. If the device fails, there will likely be a considerable amount of pain and suffering, as well as the need for a second or even subsequent surgery. We have even seen cases where it took three separate surgical procedures to replace the defective artificial knee. This results in a lot more pain and suffering and a lot of time missed from work.
Call the Boston Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment — 1-888-367-2900.
Wilde breaks hip, sets record for getting knee replacement, September 29, 2016, By Necia P. Seamons, Preston Citizen
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