My 95-year old aunt had a total knee replacement and died on the operating table. Why do they put older people through this kind of ordeal? It just doesn't seem right.

Research shows that most patients over age 90 do well after a total knee replacement (TKR). They generally have much welcomed pain relief and increased mobility. They can often walk again and even go up and down stairs without help. They live an average of five or more years after the operation.

Complications can occur during or after any operation. Older patients are at increased risk for problems. Doctors try to monitor this closely, but sometimes serious health events like heart attack, stroke, and even death occur. Operations to put in a new hip are safe and reliable for most patients in the over 90 adult group.