Take my knee. Please.

Posted on December 22, 2011


NBC News yesterday evening came out with a breaking (No pun intended. But I wouldn’t believe that last sentence, if I were you.) story about the upsurge in hip and knee replacements among boomers. 

Boomers have long felt that they were only as old as they believed themselves to be. For this reason, they consider questions about age on online dating sites to merit artistic license, and they and refuse to stop engaging in the kinds of physical activity they have always engaged in. The result is a lot of people not trusting online dating site profiles and a lot of people having hips and knees blow out on them.

 It is common knowledge that boomers have never had to consult anyone, anytime, anywhere and they refuse to do so now.  They are happily biking, hiking, running, dancing, and doing knee marathons, with little or no regard to their aging joints.  When asked about the damage she was doing to her joints by Zumba dancing, one boomer responded, “My knees are 56, but they look 46, so it’s no problem.” Her knees, on the other hand, having come reluctantly to the party, eventually gave out.

Enter the era of hip and knee replacement to save the day.  Knee replacement surgery was first performed in 1968, utilizing rocks and a primitive system of levers and pulleys.  Actual construction of the joint followed the general principles of the building of the Great Pyramid of Giza. Boomers, then occupied somewhere between kindergarten and their senior year in college, had other things to think about.  Mostly homework and wishing for a snow day.

And so joint replacement booms. Modern Medicine reports that between 2000 and 2004, the number of primary hip and knee replacements performed increased by 37 percent and 53 percent, respectively. The increase was particularly marked in individuals aged 45 to 64. It projects that 600,000 hip and 1.4 million knee replacements will be performed in the year 2015, more than double the number performed in 2004.  By 2025, the number of replacement knees will be more than double the number of existing people.

This author has had first-hand experience of total knee replacement.  Be advised that you can do the same thing as she did to prepare, which is basically nothing.  Except to complain a lot when she was walking up and down steps.  And use a lot of profanity. And then, after the replacement, to get stuck in airport security. A lot.  And to watch hundreds of nefarious people streaming by, all eyeing her suitcase, with thoughts of stealing her underwear. And then to get Clunk.  Which is an actual disorder after knee replacement that results in one’s knee sounding like road drilling equipment.

So good luck with all that, you Boomer Athletes, you.