EXERCISE You don't have to just accept being in pain. Are You Ready for JOINT REPLACEMENT? Five signs it might be time for surgery to relieve your joint pain, and three signs it's not 20 SP RIN G 2018 Most people can delay or avoid surgery if they first try physical therapy and other nonsurgical treatments, says Wayne A. Johnson, MD, a spokesman for the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. "The key is that you actually had an adequate trial of conservative care," he says. So how do you know if the time is finally right? Consider these reasons you may or may not be ready for joint replacement surgery. ILLUSTRATION BY STUDIO WARBURTON The decision to undergo joint replacement surgery is usually months or even years in the making. Although the procedure is increasingly successful and common-more than 1 million Americans replace a knee or hip every year- surgery is still the last resort.