A Lincolnshire patient has become the first in the county to undergo knee replacement surgery in just one day, and she is looking forward to long walks with her dog.
Andrea Rodda, 55, from near Gainsborough, started having problems after an accident 20 years ago when she was working at Gatwick Airport and was struck by a passengers’ trolley full of bags.
She had surgery at the time but her knee got steadily worse in the time since, so she jumped at the chance to have the new day knee replacement surgery.
Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon Prasad Antapur and his team have pioneered new ways of working to make day-case knee surgery possible for patients at Grantham and District Hospital.
Mr Antapur said: “Knee replacement surgery usually requires a stay of around three days because of issues with pain, joint mobility and recovery.
“Enhanced recovery and getting patients mobile and pain-free as soon as possible is something I am very enthusiastic about.
“Introducing advance physiotherapy support, better pain relief and faster recovery is getting patients home quicker.”
He believes that day-case knee surgery will now become the norm for most regular knee replacements carried out at Grantham.
Although, more complex cases will still need to be carried out at Lincoln County Hospital.
“We have worked with physiotherapists and anaesthetists to make small tweaks to how we work to speed up the process and get people home sooner.”
Patients see physiotherapists in advance of their surgery so they already know what to expect and what exercises they will need to do, speeding up the process.
The success is also down to the use of modern anaesthetics, which are short-acting and wear off quicker, enabling patients to start their recovery sooner.
“Pain is often the big issue for knee replacement patients, and advances in medicines have meant that we now have better pain killers that can help people to get mobile sooner,” said Mr Antapur.
“The other little trick is giving patients a sugary drink just before surgery. This takes effect so that they feel more lively when they wake up, giving them a good head start on recovery.”