How do I choose the right knee surgeon?

More and more of us are requiring some form of knee surgery or treatment at some point in our lives – more than 70,000 knee replacements are carried out in England and Wales every year and that number is on the rise.

Pain and lack of mobility associated with knee problems can greatly impact quality of life and your ability to perform daily tasks, so a successful surgical intervention is imperative and the most important decision you’ll make is in choice of your surgeon.

The internet is a fantastic resource, but the amount of information can often be bewildering. It can also be difficult to distinguish between a practitioner that has all the necessary experience and expertise and one that is skilled at marketing themselves and their practice.

#1 Recommendation

Ask friends and family if they can recommend a knee surgeon. Your relationship should be based on trust and communication so a word of mouth recommendation can be worth its weight in gold.

This also covers referrals from your GP and a physiotherapist. They have your best interests at heart and will also have a knowledge of local surgeons and which is best suited for your particular knee concern.

#2 Properly qualified

It is imperative that your knee surgeon holds, or has held, the position of Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon in the NHS. Check if your prospective surgeon is on the specialist register by searching the list of medical practitioners on the General Medical Council (GMC) website.

Membership of leading independent industry groups can also be a good indication; Mr Jonathan Webb is a member of the British Orthopaedic Association, the British Association of Surgery of the Knee, the UK Association of Doctors in Sport and the British Association of Sports and Exercise Medicine.

#3 Experience

Finding an orthopaedic surgeon that specialises in knee surgery is a must. How long they been practicing and how much experience do they have in your specific knee procedure? How would they cope with a complication and what is their revision rate?