Thousands of adults considering hip or knee replacement can now discover if the operation will really change their lives.
Scientists have developed a new online tool that shows how many patients will benefit from their new joint – and even their risk of death.
The calculator, designed by experts from the University of Sheffield, also tells them how likely it is that they will have to undergo surgery.
To calculate the risks for patients, it asks 18 questions about their pain, mobility and personal information before giving a unique set of results.
A total of more than 220,000 hip and knee replacement procedures are performed every year in Great Britain, most of which are for knees.
But it is currently & # 39; impossible & # 39; for general practitioners and advisers to tell patients about the exact risks and benefits they will encounter, and only give them general information.
Try the tool below for yourself
Without specific information that exists, some patients perform surgery in fear of the risks and others take a gamble.
The Patient Decision Aid For Joint Replacement tool works for adults between 30 and 100 years old.
Hip and knee replacements are most common between the ages of 70 and 79, usually due to wear, conditions such as osteoarthritis and falls.
Researchers used data from one million patients who have already undergone hip and knee replacements to make the tool.
Professor Mark Wilkinson led the creation of the tool, which can be used by patients in their own home or by GPs during appointments with the patient.
He said: & # 39; It is currently impossible for general practitioners and advisers to provide each patient with tailor-made information specific to them and their lifestyle.
& # 39; Everyone has slightly different expectations about what they hope their treatment will mean to them. & # 39;
He said the tool & # 39; more details than ever before & # 39; risks & benefits, and added: & # 39; hopefully the risk calculator will answer their questions. & # 39;
An online tool tells people who are considering a knee or hip prosthesis, how likely their effect is. Patients can weigh the benefits by looking at how much their life will be changed, such as improving their pain and mobility (pictured)
The online tool can reveal how likely it is that every patient has to undergo a repeat operation. Pictured, the probability is one in 11 for this person
The tool asks 18 questions about pain, mobility and personal information before giving a unique set of results based on information from millions of patients. Pictured, questions about the level of pain for someone considering a knee replacement
The researchers also hope that it will improve the success rate of joint replacements.
Sometimes patients find their stiffness, pain and mobility not as much improved as they had hoped.
For example, about ten percent of hip replacement patients experience pain because the joint loosens, according to the NHS.
Each hip or knee replacement costs the NHS a minimum of £ 5,000 to £ 11,000.
Both procedures are important operations, which means that patients are at risk of bleeding and potentially getting serious infections.
Older people run a higher risk of complications after surgery because their immune system tends to be weaker.
They are also more likely to experience other life-threatening health problems such as cancer or heart disease, doctors say.
Professor Wilkinson said: “We hope the tool helps patients make better decisions about undergoing joint replacements based on their personal circumstances.
& # 39; Patients also have the option to see how their results would change if, for example, they lose weight or wait a few years for the operation. & # 39;
Queen Mary University study, published in May, revealed that the & # 39; surgery population & # 39; aging faster than the general population.
As a result, doctors can be forced to have more conversations with their patients about whether surgery is worth the trouble, wrote the experts in the British Journal of Surgery.
A 75-YEAR-OLD WOMAN NEEDING A HIP REPLACEMENT
Martha Holmes, 69, from Sheffield, received her first hip prosthesis four years ago and a replacement for the other hip nine months ago.
She said the tool would have been useful to make her decision since she is an active person.
& # 39; I always try to encourage everyone thinking about a replacement to go for it and go for it as quickly as possible, & # 39; she said.
NUMBER OF PERSONS IMPOSED 75 AND MORE THAN WORK IS DOUBLE SINCE 1999
The number of patients aged 75 years or older needing NHS surgery in England has doubled since 1999, a study by Queen Mary University revealed in May 2019.
Around 1,012,000 people underwent surgery in 2015, a sharp increase compared to the 545,000 recorded before the turn of the millennium.
Researchers say the rising speed is because patients live longer than ever before, thanks to improved public health and advancing medical care.
However, a catch-22 situation means that longer lives cost the cash-tied NHS more money per year.
If current trends continue, more than half a million extra operations will be performed by 2030 for people at least 75 years old.
The most common procedures are for cataracts. From the age of 60, operations including joint replacement are often prevented by joints or conditions such as osteoporosis.
& # 39; I am a big walker and love to walk and it came to the point that I could barely walk into the street. The fact that I could not walk has really let me down.
& # 39; If you decide whether or not to undergo a hip replacement, you should think about things that you enjoy doing and that you cannot do now to think about getting that back again.
Marian Whitney, 85, from Sheffield went to the doctor two years ago after suffering from hip pain that affected her active lifestyle.
She was referred to a consultant earlier this year and is currently waiting for an appointment to discuss a possible replacement.
She said: I have a very active social life and enjoy some hobbies such as croquet, so I have always been concerned about the time it would take to recover from a hip replacement.
& # 39; Using the tool has given me a lot of information that I can now discuss with the consultant during my upcoming appointment.
& # 39; It was very useful and I am sure it will be useful for many people in a similar position to me. & # 39;
The tool is built in collaboration with the University of Bristol, with support from the National Joint Registry and Versus Arthritis.
A 45-YEAR OLD WOMAN NEEDING A KNEE REPLACEMENT
A 60-YEAR-OLD MAN NEEDING A HIP REPLACEMENT
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