Knee Replacement? Not Quite Yet.

Genicular Artery Embolization (GAE) Is Helping Patients Postpone Knee Replacement Surgery and Live Life to the Fullest

Living with chronic knee pain can be debilitating, affecting every aspect of daily life. For many individuals suffering from osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee, the traditional solution involves knee replacement surgery. However, one particular advancement in medical technology has opened up new avenues for pain relief, offering hope to those who don’t feel ready to undergo knee replacement surgery. This minimally invasive procedure is known as Genicular Artery Embolization (GAE), and it’s had a transformative impact on individuals like Lenny Holmes, who have found freedom from knee pain without a joint replacement.

Understanding Genicular Artery Embolization (GAE)

Genicular Artery Embolization (GAE) is a minimally invasive procedure designed to alleviate knee pain by targeting the genicular arteries responsible for supplying blood to the knee joint. Performed by board-certified interventional radiologists, GAE utilizes advanced imaging techniques and specialized embolizing agents to reduce blood flow to the affected area, breaking the inflammatory cycle that perpetuates pain. The procedure involves accessing the genicular arteries of the knee joint through tiny incisions and blocking blood flow using specialized particles. Benefits of the procedure include:

  • Effective at reducing or eliminating knee pain due to osteoarthritis
  • Minimally invasive
  • Swift and long-lasting results
  • Short recovery period
  • Fewer risks and complications than with joint replacement
  • By reducing inflammation, it helps protect the joint from further damage
  • Postpones the need for a knee replacement

Lenny Holmes’ Journey

Lenny Holmes, a 66-year-old skier, golfer, runner, and motorcyclist, shares his experience undergoing this life-changing procedure. As an active senior, Lenny found himself facing increasing knee pain exacerbated by a recent skiing injury. Having undergone a meniscus repair five years prior, Lenny was hesitant to pursue total knee replacement surgery due to the lengthy recovery and potential complications. However, upon learning about GAE as an alternative, Lenny consulted with Dr. Garrett Shroeder at Vascular Interventional Specialists of CORA in Bend, Oregon.

Under Dr. Shroeder’s care, Lenny underwent GAE for both knees. Within just two weeks post-procedure, Lenny noticed a significant improvement in his pain levels. By six weeks, he described his knees as feeling “normal” again. “Now I don’t even think about my knees,” Lenny stated after his recovery.

Dr. Schroeder emphasizes the significance of GAE as a valuable tool in the management of knee pain. While GAE does not replace knee surgery, it offers a bridge for patients who are not yet ready for surgery but require relief from debilitating knee pain. Dr. Schroeder notes that any complications are usually mild and temporary, offering reassurance to patients considering the procedure.

Freedom From Knee Pain

GAE gives patients like Lenny Holmes a chance to reclaim their mobility and pursue their passions without the limitations imposed by chronic knee pain. VIS of CORA is pleased to be able to offer this revolutionary treatment to patients in central and eastern Oregon.

Do you or does someone you know suffer from chronic knee pain due to osteoarthritis? Contact us to see if GAE for knee arthritis might be an option.