HEADLINE: JOINT REPLACMENTS
ANCHOR LEAD: KNEE AND HIP REPLACMENTS ARE SKYROCKETING, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
The number of knee replacements has increased by almost 70% between 1997 and 2005, with hip replacements increasing by over 30% during that same period, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Tariq Nayfeh, an orthopedic surgeon at Johns Hopkins, talks about the trends in joint replacments.
NAYFEH: I think our technology has gotten better, and we’re also starting to do them in our younger patients. And as our patient population becomes younger, our total population is increasing with the baby boomers, etcetera. The other thing is years ago, people were more willing to tolerate having some joint pain and slowed activities, but now there’s a higher demand for pain relief and a return to activity and so our patients are coming in younger, wanting their surgeries sooner, and therefore our number are going up. :24Nayfeh says minimally invasive surgical techniques also allow patients to recover much faster than previously. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.