Scientists have investigated the reasons why some people delay having knee replacement surgery, a decision that means they endure unnecessary knee pain for longer.
Study lead Dr Ann Jacobson, associate professor in Kent State's College of Nursing, revealed that her study sought to better understand the pre-and post operative experiences of patients undergoing total knee replacement surgery.
"These patients' perspectives have rarely been the topic of research, yet numerous existing studies of total joint replacement of the hip or knee indicate that eligible patients delay or decline the procedure for reasons that haven't been well understood," she explained.
Dr Jacobson, whose findings are published in, discovered that some patients put off knee surgery because they keep hoping they will get better, while others worry that something will go wrong.
She also found that many patients long to become a 'normal' human being again.
The expert concluded that patients should be given more education and support to ensure they can make an informed decision about whether, and indeed when, to under knee replacement surgery.