April 26, 2012 10:48 ET

There's No Need to Live in Chronic Pain When it Comes to Joints

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - April 26, 2012) - At 47, Peter Liber had given up doing many of the important things that made him happy. He had given up walking with his dog or going out on neighbourhood strolls with his wife. He avoided stairs because of the constant ache of bone-on-bone grinding in his left knee and was descending into a morose state of chronic pain that was severely limiting his quality of life.

Despite two decades consisting of multiple surgeries, physiotherapy and Hyaluronic acid shots to help ease the pain, Liber finally requested his family doctor give him a referral to an orthopaedic surgeon who specialized in knee replacements.

He had made the right choice. Within two months of seeing the specialist, Liber had a partial knee replacement and began his six-month road to recovery. He no longer had chronic pain and was happy he hadn't waited any longer.

Waiting too long for surgery has its consequences. There are established waiting lists for knee replacement surgery across Canada, with a goal of having surgery performed within 26 weeks of the decision to treat by the specialist and the actual start of treatment. But add up the complete wait time (i.e. the time to see a specialist and/or the time waiting to have diagnostic testing), and the total wait can be much longer. For those in severe pain, the consequences of delayed treatment can lead to abandoned activities, altered relationships, reduced or modified work, prolonged sick leave and even job loss.

Liber, now 52, is leading a full and active life. He knows his other knee is ready to be replaced as well, and he isn't going to wait. Feeling good is too precious to him.

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About MobilizeCanada

MobilizeCanada is the national communications hub of the Canadian Orthopaedic Care Strategy Group. It informs the 45-plus age group about Canada's mobility crisis while offering practical solutions to maintain mobility and motivate healthy changes. The goal is to improve the quality of life as Canadians age while making the most efficient and beneficial use of our healthcare system.





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