There are many causes for needing a bone replaced, a common one being arthritis. The hip and knee are both effective bones in the body when uncompromised by osteoarthritis because they are structurally designed to manage stress from loading in effective ways. In hip and knee replacement surgery, common surgeries, there are advantages and disadvantages relating to recovery time and lasting bone health. By examining the structure and functionality of the knee and hip with an emphasis on artificial bone, researchers are continuing to expand upon the field of bone replacement surgery.
Lubricin, encoded for by the PRG4 gene is a glycoprotein in cartilage and is plays a major role in lubrication and wear protection of cartilage. A mutation in this gene may cause the autosomal recessive disorder camptodactyly-arthropathy-coxa vara-pericarditis syndrome (CACP). Cartilage is a common denominator when it comes to knee and hip replacement surgeries. A flexible, connective tissue, cartilage is found in many places and Cartilage has a limited ability to repair itself so once it has been damaged it is difficult to recover. Cartilage displays viscoelastic properties, meaning that it is both viscous and elastic and these properties are what help the cartilage to maintain the smooth gliding motion between joints. Bone on bone grinding happens when damage has occurred to the cartilage. This grinding causes inflammation, joint stiffness, and pain. This phenomenon is known as arthritis.
Factors that can enforce or inhibit the affects of arthritis are diet, bodyweight, and exercise. All three of these factors go well together because through a balanced diet and adequate exercise an optimal bodyweight may be achieved under normal circumstances. Overweight individuals are putting more stress on their body through the effects of gravity and their ability to exercise meaning that overweight individuals are more likely to end up having arthritis in bones that have carry a lot of stress and have a large range of motion such as the knee and hip.
There can be options for those needing bone replacement surgery. One may receive an allograft, an autograft, or use another alternative such as synthetic bone, to replace the original bone. In an autograft, bone is taken from the patient’s body, usually from the pelvis. The advantage of this is that bone is coming from elsewhere in the individual’s body, however the disadvantage is that this requires a two part surgery causing an additive effect when it comes to recovery time and risk for infection.
In an allograft, bone is taken from a cadaver. The advantage is that this bone comes from another source and two surgeries are not needed, but this process may take longer when it comes to finding a compatible match and may introduce foreign bodies into the receiving patient. Lastly, one may consider a synthetic product. There are many products on the market to replace defective bone that are more...