Researchers in Canada have addressed the issue of what criteria should be used in determining who is most likely to have a positive outcome from total joint replacement surgery. They point out the importance of helping a patient determine when to stop simply trying to minimize the symptoms with pain management and move forward with surgery. As surgery is usually a last resort, if the joints are not too badly damaged or deteriorated and the level of pain is acceptable, surgery and its risks can often be delayed.
The researchers also cast doubt on the high rate of success often cited by manufacturers and doctors involved in this type of surgery. However controlling for other factors such as additional health problems or defining what constitutes a successful outcome could have contributed to the lower rate. Definitely check out the link above to read more, especially if you or a loved one is considering joint replacement surgery.