JOPLIN, Mo. – Doctors at Freeman Health System in Joplin have been using a new technique on patients before knee replacement surgery, so there’s less pain afterward.
The new treatment is called Iovera and is performed two weeks before replacement surgery, and deadens the nerves around the knee for up to four months afterward. Ultrasound technology is used to find three nerves which are then injected with a chemical that literally freezes them, blocking the signal they send off to the brain which causes the feeling of pain.
“We are definitely seeing patients requiring fewer pain medication, both narcotic and non-narcotic, and as a result they just feel better, they just do better, they get home quicker and as a result they just have an overall better experience, but we know the hard part about knee replacement has always been the soreness afterwards.”Dr. Derek Miller, Freeman Orthopedic Surgeon
Dr. Miller says reducing post-surgical pain can actually speed up the recovery process. He says patients with less pain can often take on more physical therapy sooner than those with more pain.