Knee and Hip Replacements: Good for the Heart

By April 21, 2015Aging in Place

In a study done on older adults with severe arthritis, a shocking result was found. The study took 153 older adults who needed to have a hip or knee replaced. Then, researchers also took another 153 older adults that did not have arthritis, nor did they need to get a hip or knee replaced. Over the course of 7 years, researchers recorded their data.

In a surprising find, over the course of those seven years, 111 incidents of cardiovascular attacks occurred. These included heart attacks, strokes, heart failure, bypass surgery, and angioplasty. The surprising thing was that those who had a joint replaced were found to have a 40 percent less chance of having the cardiovascular attack. On top of that, those who were found to have at least one risk of cardiovascular complications benefitted from their joint replacement. It was shown that there was a 29 percent decrease risk for a cardiovascular complication.

These finding can be explained by the change in a person’s physical activities after their joint replacement. Arthritis is a very painful disease that can affect plenty of joints. Whether you have arthritis in your hands, feet, knees, or hips the pain can be bad enough to keep you from being active. As a result, older adults with arthritis might not get the required exercise in order to maintain proper heart health.

On the other hand, older adults with arthritis who get their joints replaced get the feeling of rejuvenation. The lack of pain is enough to help anyone rejoice, thus causing them to be even more active than they were previously. This allows older adults to get the proper amount of exercise to reduce their risk at a heart attack, stroke, or any other cardiovascular complication.

The moral of the story is the importance of exercise. It helps reduce the risk of premature death from heart disease. There are even studies that show exercise can reduce the level of pain due to arthritis, which is a big reason why some older adults don’t get the required physical activity they need as this recent study shows. If your elderly loved suffers from arthritis, it might be best to come up with an exercise routine he or she can do everyday. Make sure it’s not too strenuous or they might hurt themselves as opposed to getting healthy. The recommended amount is 30 minutes a day. Even if that includes a mile long walk, sets of jumping jacks, or any other workout you can think of, raising the heart rate is good for your loved one.

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