A New Solution for Long-Term Joint Replacement Pain

1 in 5 people who have undergone a major joint replacement surgery have long-term pain afterwards. (1)

Modern Total Hip Replacements (THRs) and Total Knee Replacements (TKRs) have been a very common surgical procedure since the 70’s, focusing on returning the range of motion and mechanics of the replaced joints to patients worldwide. (2) While there have been considerable advances in the last 50 years regarding overall success, favorability of results, and more effective technology, one thing that hasn’t changed too much is the number of people who report long-term pain after undergoing major joint replacement surgery.

In 2022, the American Joint Replacement Registry annual report registered a procedural volume growth of 14% compared to the previous year, including data from over 2.8 million hip and knee procedures in the US. (3) While the procedures are typically considered highly successful, many people continue to experience significant pain and functional problems after the procedure. (4) In fact, a study done in 2016 reported that about 7-23% of patients undergoing THR and 10-34% of patients undergoing TKR experienced moderate to severe long-term pain after the procedure. (5) 

While the causes of chronic pain after major joint replacement surgery are not yet fully understood, many doctors and surgeons are doing everything they can to find solutions to this rampant problem.

One Scottsdale-based orthopedic surgeon in particular has been doing just that. Dr. Theodore Firestone, MD, reported his success in using a lesser-known modality and therapeutic process provided by ARPwave (Accelerated Recovery and Performance).

“ARPwave was the first therapeutic modality that I offered at the Joint Replacement Center of Scottsdale, which I started in 2006. It was my own personal experience following a two-level neck fusion in 2009 that led me to embrace the technology as an alternative or adjunct to conventional physical therapy.”

ARPwave LLC is a company established over 18 years ago by a man named Denis Thompson. Inspired by the world of orthopedic surgery, Denis set out to determine the reason for atrophy and chronic pain in patients who were not experiencing favorable results with standard therapy options. Specifically, what he found was that chronic pain, particularly in the joints, is typically caused by the body’s inability to absorb force. When the nervous system isn’t sending signals the way it’s supposed to, the muscles never get the instructions telling them what to do. This then allows the force to be redirected to damaged tissue that is not built for handling it.

Using a combination of proprietary steps and their ARPwave devices, the company boasts incredible results, with a higher than 95% success rate, by focusing on why the pain is occurring instead of the pain itself. As a result, it is able to work towards fixing the cause of the problem instead of just offering temporary symptom relief. According to an article published in The Pain Medicine Journal, chronic post-surgical pain after total knee replacement surgery is attributed to neuropathy when surgery-related causes are ruled out. (6) This study focuses on how the nervous system interacts with muscles and joints and forms the basis of the NeuroTherapy process and is one of the major reasons for the company’s widespread success.

“I would encourage any healthcare provider who thinks outside the box of conventional PT to look into ARPwave.” Said Dr. Firestone. “In many cases, it took just one or two sessions with Sarah, my talented ARPwave technician, for these patients to report a noticeable difference in their condition.”

The DC current used during the therapeutic process works to communicate in a way similar to that of the nervous system and helps promote blood flow, increase strength, and improve range of motion. Not only does this help manage or eliminate pain, but it also works to promote the body’s natural healing processes and can speed up recovery from major surgeries like joint replacements, just by resetting the nervous system to do what it was originally designed to do.

Typically, treating long-term pain is expensive and difficult to treat; however, ARPwave offers a solution that allows the body to rely more consistently on its natural healing processes, avoiding the need for long-term medication or even additional potential surgeries. The ARPwave NeuroTherapy Process also addresses the fact that psychological health impacts long-term outcomes and underlines that recovery is equally as mental as physical and provides a workable solution for both.

For additional information on ARPwave and the NeuroTherapy Process, visit their website here and speak to a representative today.

(1) https://evidence.nihr.ac.uk/alert/personalised-follow-up-after-knee-replacement-reduce-long-term-pain/#:~:text=Ongoing%20pain%20after%20knee%20replacement,the%20replacement%20joint%2C%20and%20depression.

(2) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8054655/

(3) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10182168/#:~:text=The%202022%20American%20Joint%20Replacement%20Registry%20(AJRR)%20annual%20report%20includes,and%20the%20district%20of%20Columbia.

(4) https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/2/1/e000435

(5) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK379628/

(6) https://academic.oup.com/painmedicine/article/15/10/1781/1941806

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