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How "bad" does my joint pain have to get before I should consider having joint replacement?

This is a very personal decision that only you can make with the help of an orthopaedic specialist's evaluation of your pain and its effects on your daily life. For example, experiencing knee pain day after day without relief can lead to "staying off" the joint - which often weakens the muscles around it, so it becomes even more difficult to move. When other more conservative treatment options - including medication and physical therapy - no longer provide pain relief, joint replacement may be recommended.