Gold bead implantation as alternative to knee replacement surgery

Leading experts in Denmark since 1996

Gold bead implantation vs knee replacement surgery

Every year, several thousand people have knee replacement surgery due to chronic pain and osteoarthritis of one or both knee joints. This is done by replacing the joint with a prosthesis. Unfortunately, many believe that “a new knee” provides total pain relief. This is far from the case in most patients.

  • After a knee replacement, 44% of patients continue to experience chronic knee pain of varying severity.
  • One in six patients experience severe knee pain for several years after the surgery.

That’s why it’s important to have tried other treatments before deciding to have a knee replacement – you also need to know that knee surgery carries a risk of complications, as well as rehabilitation for at least a year after the operation.

In our clinic in Denmark, Europe, our doctors use gold bead implantation when treating patients with chronic knee pain. This is a very gentle treatment, which is carried out under local anaesthetic. Tiny 24-carat gold pieces are implanted around the knee joint via thin needles at acupuncture points. The tiny gold beads work as a form of permanent acupuncture stimulating the points. This treatment is an excellent option when you have chronic pain in your knee and you do not want a large operation including knee replacement surgery where the surfaces of the knee joint is replaced with artificial components. Gold bead implantation helps most of our patients without any risk of complications or worsening of pain.


I've got my quality of life back after my treatment with gold beads.

It’s amazing. I just got back from vacation. Last year, I could barely walk a mile. This year I have walked far distances every single day. It’s almost too good to be true that I no longer have any pain.

Vita, 66 years old

Below you can read more about osteoarthritis of the knee, knee replacement surgery (including long-term rehabilitation after the surgery, risk of complications and risk of chronic pain after knee replacement surgery) and what other options there are to relieve chronic knee pain. We will also discuss gold bead implantation as an alternative to knee replacement surgery.

Facts about gold bead implantation of osteoarthritis of the knee

There are many benefits using gold bead implantation instead of knee replacement surgery. Some of the benefits of gold bead implantation are listed below:

  • Gold bead implantation is scientifically proven and gives long-lasting pain relief in patients with chronic knee pain.
  • Implanting gold beads around the knee joint can provide permanent or long-term pain relief. Hence, most patients can avoid a large operation replacing the knee joint with artificial components.
  • A single treatment implanting tiny 24-karat gold beads around the knee joint is usually enough to provide lasting pain relief.
  • Lasting pain relief or freedom from pain is seen in most of our patients. Please note that we have been using this method since 1996, making our doctors the leading experts in Europe. Gold bead implantation has been used by veterinarians to cure joint pain in dogs and other pets since the 1980s.
  • The need for painkillers after the treatment is reduced or eliminated.
  • No need for hospitalization after the treatment.
  • Can be done regardless of age and cardiovasculare disease.
  • No side effects.
  • No need for rehabilitation after a gold bead implantation.
  • All kind of daily activities can be resumed just after the gold bead implantation.

Thus, gold bead implantation is an excellent treatment and can be used instead of knee replacement surgery. A gold bead implantation is used to treat predominantly moderate to severe arthritis pain in the knee, but is also suitable for treating knee pain where other therapies, such as exercise therapy, painkillers and weight loss, have no or little effect.

As mentioned, the majority of our patients experience long-lasting or permanent pain relief or freedom from pain after a single gold bead implantation. Therefore, in many cases, a gold bead implantation can make knee replacement surgery completely unnecessary.

Gold bead implantation is a gentle procedure that requires no hospitalisation, rehabilitation or sick leave.

  • Hence, a large operation replacing the knee joint is by far not the only way to get rid of arthritis pain in the knee. Gold bead implantation is an excellent and gentle treatment compared to knee replacement surgery.

It's a miracle

It’s amazing – mum has no pain in her knee since yesterday after she had gold in her knee. She’s been out for a walk on the road with a walker without any pain, which she hasn’t been able to do for a long time […] It’s a miracle.

Thank you so much – we are so happy.

Daughter of 92-year-old woman

When should you suspect osteoarthritis of the knee?

At first, the pain varies in severity. Most patients experience both good and bad days. Osteoarthritis of the knee should be suspected if you have:

  • Chronic joint pain
  • Knee pain that worsens when walking
  • Stiffness of the knee
  • Swelling of the knee

At first, you feel stiffness and pain in your knee when you start walking. The pain usually eases after some few minuts, but if you take for a long walk, the pain usually gets worse.

As the disease progresses, there may be resting pains and pain at night, leading to a reduced quality of sleep.


I am SO happy that my pain is gone

Now, almost three months have passed since I got gold in my left knee on the 3nd of November.
I’m happy to tell you that the pain was pretty much gone immediately after my gold bead implantation. The pain briefly returned at the end of November but then the pain disappeared again.
I still get some swelling of my knee (less than before) when I walk far. But my knee doesn’t hurt anymore and the swelling goes away fairly quickly. I can fully stretch my knee, which I couldn’t do before.

I am SO happy that the pain is gone and to have my full mobility back and it seems like it is still getting a little better day by day👏🏻😊.


What does it mean to have a knee replacement (effect, operation, risk of complications and rehabilitation)?

Below, you’ll find more info about knee replacement surgery. The information comes from different scientific articles and include a lot of facts about the operation that most patients don’t know about before it’s too late. It’s also worth noting that knee replacement surgery doesn’t necessarily provide pain relief.

How much pain relief can be expected after knee replacement surgery?

  • The majority of patients become pain-free and experience improved knee function.
  • 44% continue to have chronic pain after having knee replacement surgery. The pain is usually milder and less frequent than before the operation. This means you can resume activities such as cycling, swimming and walking.
  • 15% of patients experience no improvement after knee replacement surgery. These patients might even experience severe or very severe chronic knee pain for many years after the operation.
  • After a large operation such as a knee replacement you should always expect the need for rehabilitation for at least a year after the surgery and a risk of complications.

How is a knee replacement performed?

The operation itself involves that the surgeon opening up the knee through an incision in the front of the knee. The damaged joint surfaces are then removed and replaced with a prosthesis. Once the prosthesis is in place, the knee can be closed again. Knee surgery typically involves 2-4 days in hospital and a lot of pain in the knee after the surgery.

In comparison, a gold bead implantation is a much more gentler procedure, without any risks of complications.


The pain is gone

After I had gold beads put in my knee, the pain is gone.

Listen to Irene’s story in the video here.

Irene, 69 years old

Severe pain in the first days after knee replacement surgery

Knee replacement surgery is a huge operation. Although painkillers are prescribed after the operation, most patients experience pain in the first days following the procedure. How much pain you experience is individual.

There will also be swelling in the knee, which contributes to the pain. The swelling and tenderness in the knee lasts for a few months, and gradually subsides. Some patients experience swelling of the knee and leg for up to a year after knee surgery.

In some orthopedic departments, the surgeon inserts a small, thin plastic tube into the knee towards the end of the operation, through which painkillers are administered. The tube is removed the day after the operation.
In addition, you will be offered a combination of different painkillers (such as morphine), which are often enough to take away the worst pain.

Some patients experience constipation, nausea and possibly vomiting from the medication given during and after the operation.

Rehabilitation after knee replacement surgery

After knee surgery, the rehabilitation lasts for many months. Today, it is recommended that rehabilitation is maintained for at least one year after the knee replacement surgery. The patient should exercise the knee every day to get the best result after the treatment.

Rehabilitation is important to avoid too much scar tissue inside the knee after the operation. Scar tissue is the body’s reaction to the surgical procedure. If the knee joint is not exercised after surgery, scar tissue makes the knee stiff.

To reduce the risk of stiffness of the knee after the surgery, you should start making knee exercises from the day after surgery. A physiotherapist can instruct you on how to do the knee exercises.

When you are discharged from the hospital after the knee replacement operation, it’s important that you continue to exercise on a daily basis for at least a year after the knee operation.

Rehabilitation initially consists of knee exercises and walking on stairs using crutches. Crutches are usually provided by the hospital and are needed for a few weeks to months after surgery before the patient can walk normally again after the operation. Some patients need crutches more than 3 months.

The aim of the rehabilitation is to get better and being able to walk again. Gradually, knee exercises can be supplemented by cycling or swimming. Cycling is great exercise after knee replacement surgery.

By comparison, there is no need for rehabilitation after implanting gold beads around the knee joint. Gold bead implantation is a very gentle treatment, performed under local anaesthetic, where tiny pieces of 24-karat gold beads are implanted around the knee joint via thin needles to provide pain relief. The risk is some few bruises at most.


The pain in my knee is gone

Hi, My Miracle Doctor.
I had gold implants in my left knee on the 30th of November 2016. I was in terrible pain before my gold treatment. After just two weeks I experienced an improvement. My pain is now gone.

I tell it to anyone who cares to hear about it😊

Lene, 41 years old

Sick leave after knee replacement surgery

After a large operation such as a knee replacement you cannot go to work but have to take a sick leave. The duration of the sick leave depends on your occupation. For most patients, the duration of sick leave is typically 3 months.

If you have heavy manual work, you might need to take more than 3 months off work after the knee operation.

In comparison, there is no need for sick leave after a gold bead implantation of the knee. You can simply go back to work the day after the treatment.

Are there any restrictions after knee replacement surgery?

As a rule of thumb, you cannot support with all your weight on the operated knee in the beginning after surgery Knee exercises are part of the rehabilitation after the operation.

It is also recommended to engage in physical activity on a daily basis for more than a year after knee replacement surgery. Exercises can help you lose weight, strengthen your thigh muscles and relieve pain.

You may start doing some light activities such as light gymnastics, swimming, walking and cycling after a while after the knee replacement surgery.

After knee replacement surgery, however, you should:

  • Avoid contact sports
  • Avoid heavy lifting, including repetitive work or a lot of standing/walking
  • Avoid long walks

It is recommended not to drive (sit in the driver’s seat) until the operated knee is stable and with good muscle strength; Hence, you have to be able to walk safely without crutches before you start to drive again. Most patients can drive safely after 1-3 months.

An interesting story from our clinic concerns our first patient, who had tiny 24-carat gold beads implanted in his knee in 1996 due to severe chronic knee pain. Last time we heard from him some years ago, he still played football in his leisure time. That wouldn’t have been possible if he had had a knee replacement instead.

What are the complications and risks of knee replacement surgery?

In major operations such as hip and knee replacement surgery, there is always a risk of complications. Complications occur with varying frequency.

The most common complications after knee replacement surgery are listed below (% risk in brackets):

  • Chronic knee pain of varying severity (44%). 15% of knee surgery patients experience severe knee pain for several years after the procedure
  • Loosening of the knee prosthesis (2-5%) and need for replacement of the knee prosthesis
  • Infection around the prosthesis (1-3%). This often requires replacement of the artificial knee joint
  • Infection of the surgical wound (1-2%). In some cases, this requires antibiotics and surgical debridement of the wound including thoroughly cleaning of the wound and removing all infected, and nonviable (necrotic or dead) tissue.
  • Sensory disturbances in the leg or drop foot due to nerve damage (1%)
  • Deep vein thrombosis (blood clot in a vessel) in the leg (1-7%)
  • Urinary tract infection (4%)
  • Deaths (fortunately rare, but occasionally due to complications of the operation)

There is no guarantee how long an artificial knee will last. The durability of the prothesis is limited. In total, 5% will need a replacement of the artificial joint within 10 years after the initial knee replacement, while 10% will need a new knee replacement within 15 years.


Completely pain-free after a gold bead implantation

Three months ago, my husband had a gold bead implantation in your clinic. Immediately after the treatment, his hip pain was gone and has been ever since. He is completely pain free today. We are incredibly grateful.

Wife of the patient

When to consider knee replacement surgery?

There is no doubt that chronic knee pain can be very debilitating and have a negative impact on quality of life.
So it’s natural to consider knee replacement surgery in the hope of getting better – especially when you don’t know about other treatment options.

The chronic knee pain must be of a certain severity before it makes sense to have a joint replacement. However, surgeons have in recent years become more than more reluctance to operate (at least here in Denmark). The reasons might be:

  • There is a risk of complications
  • Long-term rehabilitation is needed
  • 15% have severe chronic knee pain after knee replacement surgery and in some cases the chronic knee pain even gets worse than before surgery.
  • There are other treatments that are much more gentler than knee replacement surgery and should be tried before committing to major surgery.

In other words, knee replacement surgery should always be considered as the last resort when you suffer from chronic knee pain.

Alternatives to knee replacement surgery for mild to moderate knee pain

Below, you can read more about different treatments that can delay or eliminate the need for knee replacement surgery.
Before considering knee replacement surgery, it is important to explore these much more gentle treatments.

The pain management strategy depends on both pain severity as well as how much the pain affect daily activities and quality of life. Other treatments to consider include:

Mild to moderate arthritis knee pain

  • Acupuncture
  • Physiotherapy, exercise and physical activity
  • Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS)
  • Gold bead implantation
  • Painkillers
  • Heat and cold application on the sore joint
  • Weight loss

Patients with mild to moderate knee pain usually benefit from light exercise. If you are unsure about which exercises can help, you can seek advice from a physiotherapist. A physiotherapist can help you to create an exercise programme that is adapted to your knee problem.

In addition to light exercise, weight loss is recommended for people with a high BMI (above 25). The weight loss should be at least 10% of the body weight. For example, if you weigh 80 kg, you need to lose at least 8 kg to achieve pain relief. Losing weight reduces the weight on the arthritic knee. In many cases, weight loss can postpone surgery and, at best, make surgery unnecessary.

Weight loss is achieved through exercise and diet. Light to moderate physical activity (such as exercise therapy, cycling, swimming or low-intensity aerobics) can be a way to lose weight.

Over-the-counter painkillers can also be used to relieve mild to moderate pain in the knees. In some cases, opioid pain medication can be prescribed by your own doctor for short-term use.

If these types of painkillers do not relieve the pain, you can ask your doctor to prescribe NSAIDs, which are medicines that are widely used to relieve pain and reduce inflammation. However, long-term treatment with NSAIDs is not recommended because of the risk of serious side effects, including ulcers, kidney failure and heart attack.

If the treatments mentioned abouve fail to provide long-term pain relief or if the knee pain has lasted longer than six months, we recommend gold bead implantation, which helps most of our patients.

We have used gold bead implantation in our clinic in Denmark since 1996 and have treated numerous patients with knee problems due to arthritis with excellent results. The patient below is a good example:


New quality of life

I am the happiest patient. You saved my two knees, and gave me new quality of life and mobility after my gold implantation in both my knees.
I’m just incredibly lucky. Again, I can live normally with great activity and hunting trips with heavy backpack.


Bertrand, 62 years old

Alternatives to knee replacement surgery for moderate to severe knee pain

We recommend gold bead implantation as the best alternative to a knee replacement.

Below, you’ll find a number of treatments that can be tried for relieve moderate to severe knee pain:

Moderate to severe arthritis pain in the knees

  • Gold bead implantation (long-term pain relief can be expected)
  • Physiotherapy to maintain knee function (limited pain relief)
  • Injection of hyaluronic acid (short-term pain relief)
  • Injection of corticosteroid into the knee (short-term pain relief and only indicated for joint swelling)
  • Knee replacement surgery
  • Stronger painkillers
  • Weight loss

In moderate to severe arthritis pain, exercise therapy is still recommended to maintain knee function, although most patients do not experience sufficient pain relief.
Sometimes, strong painkillers such as morphine might be necessary (for short-term use only). Unfortunately, this treatment has side effects including drug addiction, lethargy, constipation and nausea. Treatment with morphine should only be prescribed by your doctor for short-term use and for flare-ups of knee pain.

Repeated injections of hyaluronic acid into the knee joint can be used for severe osteoarthritis pain. The treatment only provides temporary pain relief. Hence, it cannot be recommended for chronic osteoarthritis pain in the knee.


I have slept without waking up because of pain

Tonight is the 2nd night I have slept without waking up because of pain. I can sit and stand up from a chair without any problems. I can walk as fast as most. Today my goal is to go riding.
I’m just so happy and relieved. Thank you so much.

Vivian, 60 years old


Gold implantation is an excellent alternative to knee replacement surgery when you have chronic joint pain. The treatment is scientifically proven and helps most of our patients. In our clinic in Denmark, Europe, we have used this technique for treating chronic pain conditions in humans since 1996 with good results. Likewise, veterinarians have used gold bead implantation since the 1980s to treat joint pain in dogs and other pets.

As a rule of thumb, knee replacement surgery should always be considered a last resort in cases of osteoarthritis of the knee, as the treatment cannot be undone. Unfortunately, not everyone experience pain relief after knee replacement surgery. Knee replacement surgery also carries a risk of complications and requires months of rehabilitation and sick leave. Implanting tiny 24-carat gold beads around the knee joint is a very gentle procedure which carries no risks of complications. There is no need for hospitalisation, rehabilitation or sick leave after a gold bead implantation.


I am the happiest person in the world

4 weeks after my gold bead treatment 90% of my pain is gone. I am the happiest person in the world. I am so grateful to you. Before the treatment I could nearly walk 30 minutes through the city and every step with pain. Now I walk 3 hours and more without pain. Thank you very much.


Before implantation of gold beads:

To be considered for a our chronic pain treatment with gold implants, please do as follows:

  1. Contact the clinic to make an appointment (you’ll find our contact informations here). You can also contact us if you need to know more about the treatment before you decide to book an appointment.
  2. We need to see X-ray or CT- /MRI scanning images of the painful joint or painful area prior to your gold bead implantation. Your X-ray or CT-/MRI scanning should not be older than 2 years.
  3. You can always contact the department where you have had the examination. They can send you the images or description of the X-ray or CT- /MRI scanning The department is obliged to send you the images.
  4. Please send us the X-ray images in advance of your consultation.
  5. If you are taking anticoagulants, you should pause the medication some few days prior to your gold treatment. Always make sure to consult with us regarding any medications that you might take prior to your gold treatment. Please let us know if you take any kind of medication when you book your appointment.
  6. Please bring a relative or friend to transport you home after your gold bead implantation. We advise you not to driving your car for some few hours after your treatment due to the local anaesthetic.

Please, let's talk.

Our specialists have used gold implants for pain relief of chronic pain since 1996. Hence, we’re the clinic with most experience treating long-term and chronic pain in humans with gold beads. Please, let’s get in touch if you want to know more about the treatment.

Hans Kjerkegaard

Doctor Hans Kjerkegaard

Læge Ulrik Kjerkegaard

Doctor Ulrik Kjerkegaard

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Gold bead implantation

Everything you need to know about chronic paint treatment with gold implants (gold bead implantation). We have used this method since 1996 for treating chronic pain and sore joints in humans. Hence, our doctors are the most experienced in Europe.


With time, we have received a lot of positive feedback from our patients. Some of our patients have no pain after their treatment with gold beads. Hence, the treatment might reduce pain and improve quality of life.

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Hans Kjerkegaard

Hans Kryger Kjerkegaard

Doctor, MD,
Risskov (Aarhus), Denmark

Læge Ulrik Kjerkegaard

Ulrik Kjerkegaard

Doctor, MD,
Risskov (Aarhus), Denmark

Hans Kjerkegaard

Hans Kryger Kjerkegaard

Doctor, MD,
Risskov (Århus), Denmark

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