Who Should Consider Total Knee Replacement Surgery
It is usually reasonable to try a number of non-operative interventions before considering knee replacement surgery of any type. Prior to surgery an orthopedic surgeon may offer medications knee injections or exercises. A surgeon may talk to patients about activity modification weight loss or use of a cane.
The decision to undergo the total knee replacement is a “quality of life” choice. Patients typically have the procedure when they find themselves avoiding activities that they used to enjoy because of knee pain. When basic activities of daily life–like walking shopping or reasonable recreational pastimes–are inhibited or prevented by the knee pain it may be reasonable to consider the surgery.
Knee Replacement Recovery Exercises
Initially, as you increase your activity the knee can be sore, but with appropriate medication and gentle exercise, your recovery should proceed smoothly.
Well prescribe a set of exercises for you to do at home. Every programme is different, but here are a few exercises we regularly ask patients to do. You should aim for 3 sets of 10 reps per exercise every day:
- Stair lunges: Stand at the base of the stairs and place your operated foot on the first stair. Lunge forward slowly bending at the knee only as far as is comfortable
- Bed exercise: Push the knee flat into the bed to fully straighten the leg
- Mini-squats: Stabilise yourself by holding on to a kitchen bench, door frame or heavy table. Keeping your back straight, lower you buttocks bending, at the knees. Only go as far as is comfortable.
Tips For A Smoother Recovery
Physicians and patients share their insights for safely and efficiently getting back on your feet:
If you have concerns or if youre experiencing something you dont understand, speak up. Your doctor and physical therapist will know if its normal or not. In my case I mentioned a muscle spasm issue to my physical therapist, and she got on the phone with my doctor and I ended up needing a medication change to address it. Patient Sharon Barnes
Walking is the best therapy you can do. Walking in the park or around your neighborhood is really how youll be able to get back to normal life quicker. Dr. Courtney
Ive had both done, 14 and 15 years ago. Best advice: Do your before exercises and build up your strength, then after surgery, do your exercise as soon as youre able and keep doing them to get your best range of movement. Its going to hurt, but its so worth it. Healing pain is different, its pain with an end in sight. My father-in-law told me before I had my first one done, to remember, short-term pain for the long-term gain, and that was my mantra. Patient Kathy M., via Facebook
I had bilateral knee replacements done two years ago. My advice? Build up your leg muscles before surgery. I started three months before so the muscles were in tip-top shape. It made a huge difference in making therapy so much easier. Cheryl W., via Facebook
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What Can I Expect At Hss
Hospital for Special Surgery has been at the forefront of modern knee replacement since the operation was first introduced in the late 1960s. We have led the field ever since in a number of ways:
- : HSS has been ranked the No. 1 hospital for orthopedics by U.S. News & World Report for 11 years straight.
- Along with high rankings in patient satisfaction, HSS performs the most knee replacements with the lowest reported infection rates in the United States.
- Research and advancement: Smaller incisions, new implant materials and design, and sophisticated instrumentation have been â and continue to be â the areas of expertise of the hip and knee replacement surgeons of the HSS .
- HSS routinely uses the latest surgical techniques and technology, such as robotic-assisted and computer-assisted surgery.
- : Isolating the anesthesia to a particular body area helps avoid the potential problems that may accompany a general anesthetic. These techniques have been developed and refined by the HSS . Learn more about
Looking After Your Knee Replacement
Your new knee will continue to improve for as much as two years after your operation as the scar tissue heals and you exercise your muscles. You’ll need to look after yourself and pay attention to any of the following problems:
Stiffness Sometimes the knee can become very stiff in the weeks after the operation for no obvious reason. Try placing your foot on the first or second step of the stairs, hold on to the banister and lean into your knee. This should help to improve movement and flexibility in your knee. Its very important to continue with the exercises you were working on in the hospital.If the stiffness doesnt improve after about six weeks your surgeon may need to move or manipulate your knee. This will be done under anaesthetic.
Pain Pain caused by bruising from the operation is normal in the first two months, and you’ll probably still need to take painkillers at six weeks to help you sleep through the night. You may still have some pain for as long as six months. If you still have pain after this, speak to your physiotherapist or GP.
Infection You should speak to your GP or hospital if you notice any signs of infection, for example:
- breakdown of the wound with oozing/pus or sores
- increased pain
- redness and the affected area feeling warmer than usual or smelling unpleasant.
You should also look after your feet see a doctor or podiatrist if you notice any problems such as ingrown toenails that could become infected.
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Recovery After Knee Arthroscopic Surgery:
Take the prescribed medicines on time:
At the very first, do not forget to check out the prescribed medicines. Medicine plays an integral role during the recovery after arthroscopic knee surgery. Make sure to ask the doctor about the duration for which you need to continue with the same medicine. During the recovery period, after a particular duration, the doctor changes the medicine.
Go for a regular checkup:
Regular checkups are also important for an individual to understand. The regular checkup will allow the doctor to diagnose your condition, and they will understand the medicine requirement. According to the condition of the artificial implants, they will suggest you the medicines.
Continue with Physiotherapy sessions:
Do not forget to go for Physiotherapy sessions. Physiotherapy sessions are important to retain mobility. If you are avoiding it or making yourself in mobile completely, it will contribute to immobility to an extent, and you will not be able to move. Therefore dont create such problems for you.
Make sure to check on to recovery:
Get an idea about the recovery as well. During the recovery period, you need to notice all the changes. If there is any swelling and redness around the artificial implant, let the doctor know about it immediately. It is essential to keep track of the same because sometimes, due to irresponsive behavior leads to unnecessary trouble.
Avoid physical exercises:
Be on a proper diet:
Managing Your Recovery At Home
To begin with, its normal to experience:
- tiredness get plenty of rest, but then its important to slowly increase your activity
- swelling to ease this, keep your leg raised when sitting and use the cryocuff cold compress we gave you, or apply an ice pack wrapped in a tea towel
- pain take any painkillers weve prescribed until youre pain free
Here are a few things you can do to strengthen your knee, avoid damaging it and help your wound heal:
- Keep your wound dry for 45 days afterwards, and use a waterproof dressing when you have a bath or shower
- Continue the exercises the physiotherapist showed you
- Try low-impact activities like walking and gradually increase how far you walk
- Keep using your crutches or walking stick for as long as you feel you need to
- Dont lift anything heavy or do any strenuous exercise
- Youll be able to bend your knee 90-120 degrees, but you should avoid kneeling down
- Dont sit with your legs crossed for the first 6 weeks
- Avoid twisting at your knee
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Think That Walking And Moving Around Is The Major Achievement
Patients mistakenly think that walking is a major achievement after surgery and that walking without a walker is even better. Other healthcare professionals can misguidedly feed into that misconception making the problem even worse. The truth is that getting up and moving around after surgery is encouraged but for the first two weeks you should be protecting the joint from full weight bearing forces by using the walker. This allows you to carry a percentage of your body weight through your arms instead of on your surgical knee.
During your knee replacement surgery, the ends of your long bones have been cut and a prothesis placed over the top. Bone that has been cut can be very painful, just ask someone who has had a small piece of bone taken from their iliac crest for use in a back surgery. That bone removal site can ache for months.
If you walk around without any protection for your new knee you will likely inflame and aggravate the bones. This can cause a person to have a real problem controlling their pain. All things considered you dont want to be dealing with more pain than is already associated with the post surgical period. So use your walker.this means actually putting weight through your arms. A 4 wheeled walker is a horrible choice for this. Get the regular 2 wheeled walker and slow down a bit. Your knee will thank you and your recovery will go much faster.
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Providing Better After Care For Patients
We’re funding research which aims to provide a standardised approach and assessment for virtual clinic follow-up of total joint replacement patients and subsequent management of patients identified as ‘at risk’ by this approach. This study would enable us to deliver better and more streamlined after care for patients.
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How Long Is It Before I Can Walk After A Knee Replacement
Most patients progress to a straight cane, walker or crutches within two or three days after surgery. As the days progress, the distance and frequency of walking will increase.
Patients are usually able to drive a car within three to six weeks after surgery and resume all other normal activities by or before six weeks. Complete recuperation and return to full strength and mobility may take up to four months. However, in many cases, patients are significantly more mobile one month after surgery than they were before they had their knee replacement
Total Knee Replacement Recovery: What To Expect After Knee Replacement
Nearly 1 million total knee replacement procedures are performed in the U.S. each year and that number is expected to continue rising exponentially to over 3 million in the next 15 years!
So it comes as no surprise that the most common joint replacement procedure Physical Therapists rehab in the outpatient clinic is a total knee arthroplasty or total knee replacement.
Many candidates want to know what to expect after a total knee replacement before they choose to have the surgery. Patients usually elect to have this procedure after nonoperative treatment options or knee replacement alternative surgeries fail to maintain knee function and pain levels.
For those patients that do decide to have total knee surgery, keep reading to learn more about the total knee replacement recovery process.
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Types Of Double Knee Replacement Surgery
Double knee replacement surgery may involve one surgery or two surgeries.
When both knees are replaced at the same time, the surgery is known as a simultaneous bilateral knee replacement.
When each knee is replaced at a different time, its called a staged bilateral knee replacement.
Either surgery may involve any combination of total knee replacement or partial knee replacement.
About Total Knee Replacement Surgery
Total knee replacement surgery involves capping off the ends of the thigh bone and shin bone with metal and plastic. In some instances, the kneecap may be also be covered with a plastic cap or button. These new, artificial knee joint components are usually attached using cement.
Patients sometimes ask about different approaches to surgery they have heard or read about, including robotic-assisted or computer-navigated procedures, or custom cutting blocks. While robotic-assisted procedures are the right option for some of the patients we treat, they represent a very small number of the procedures we perform. Your surgeon will discuss the best options for your specific situation.
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The Research On Stem Cell Therapy For Meniscus Tears Does It Work Or Not
At our center, we have seen bone marrow aspirate stem cell therapy help many people. There are many types of stem cell therapy including Amniotic, cord blood, placenta stem cell therapy. We DO NOT USE THESE PRODUCTS. This is explained in our article: Amniotic, cord blood, placenta stem cell therapy.
What Happens During Surgery
Prior to surgery, your physician and surgeon will consider things like weight, the condition of existing bone and cartilage, and other medical factors, and will have a plan in place post-surgery for optimal healing.
During knee replacement surgery, your doctor will make an incision, moving your knee cap, and cutting away any damaged bone, cartilage, and joint surfaces. This is then followed by the attachment of artificial joints, which are tested by rotating and bending the new knee replacement, before the incision is closed up with stitches and/or surgical staples.
Factors during the surgery, including blood loss, and unforeseen medical issues involving the condition of the bone, cartilage and underlying muscle can have an impact on recovery time and post-op pain following a knee replacement surgery.
Pain after knee replacement surgery is sometimes caused by biological factors present before the surgery, while others may be caused by complications and conditions during the surgery itself.
Arthritis is an example of a biological factor that may be present before the surgery, which can flare up after knee replacement surgery. Similarly, patients with pre-existing concerns about fibromyalgia may find their pain response heightened after knee replacement surgery for as much as six months.
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What To Expect After Knee Replacement
A patients recovery and rehabilitation plan is crucial to the overall success of knee replacement surgery. A recovery and rehabilitation plan can help the patient:
- Leave the hospital sooner
- Regain knee strength and range of motion more quickly
- Resume independent living sooner
- Avoid potential complications
Typically, knee replacement patients are able to leave the hospital within 1 to 5 days , and they can take care of themselves and resume most activities 6 weeks after surgery. The majority of patients are 90% recovered after 3 months, though it can take 6 months or longer before they are 100% recovered.
Some knee replacement patients do not follow the typical recovery timeline. For example:
- Patients who did knee-strengthening exercises in preparation for surgery sometimes recover more quickly.
- Patients who are older, smoke, or have other medical conditions may take longer to heal.
Deviation from the typical recovery timeline cannot always be predicted, but these differences are usually okay as long as the patient, doctor, and physical therapist, continue to work together towards a full recovery.
How Does Partial Knee Replacement Differ From Total Knee Replacement
Most arthroplasties target the entire knee joint, an operation called a total knee replacement. But some people choose to have a partial knee replacement.
To understand the difference, it helps to know the knees compartments, or sections. It has three:
- Inside .
- Outside .
- Under the kneecap .
The partial approach fixes a single section. So healthcare providers call it unicompartmental replacement. A total knee replacement addresses all three sections. Generally, only younger adults with symptoms in one knee section benefit from partial replacement.
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How Long Does The Pain Last After Arthroscopic Knee Surgery
Pain is quite common, most often in the area where you had pain before surgery, in the soft tissues below the knee cap, over the athroscopy wounds and occasionally the whole knee. The pain settles usually within two to three weeks, but may take upwards of six weeks. Swelling in the whole knee up to six weeks.
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How Long Will The New Knee Joint Last
For 8090% of people who have total knee replacement, the new joint should last about 20 years, and it may well last longer.
If you’ve had a partial knee replacement, you’re more likely to need a repeat operation about 1 person in 10 needs further surgery after 10 years.
The chances of needing another operation is greater if you’re overweight and/or involved in heavy manual work.
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How To Prepare For Knee Replacement Surgery
Youll want to weigh the pros and cons of knee replacement surgery its a major operation.
Risks are rare, Dr. John Wang, a hip and knee surgeon at the Hospital for Special Surgery Florida, told TODAY. Infection tops the list of knee replacement problems after surgery and occurs in 1 to 2% of patients, he said. People who are sedentary, overweight or have health conditions that arent well controlled are at higher risk for knee replacement surgery complications.
Theres no upper age limit for the surgery. When doctors evaluate the risks of knee replacement surgery in the elderly, they are more concerned with other health conditions, overall strength and cognitive function rather than a specific age cutoff. .