Knee replacement surgery is a major operation. If you are a candidate for knee replacement, it is important to take the necessary steps to prepare for the actual surgery and life after it. Recovery is different for everyone, but it typically takes six weeks to return to daily activities. As early as now, you can make arrangements to guarantee a smooth recovery process.
What Is Knee Replacement Surgery?
Knee replacement surgery is also known as knee arthroplasty and involves removing diseased or damaged parts of the knee joint. Your surgeon will then replace those parts with prosthetic parts. This procedure is a safe and highly effective treatment for knee pain and injury. Knee replacement surgery can be either partial or total, depending on the extent of the damage.
Recovery From Knee Replacement Surgery
For a couple of weeks after knee surgery, you might have to rely on a walker or crutches as you get used to your new joint. It would be wise to acquire these mobility aids before the procedure. You may also want to request assistance with daily tasks like bathing, doing laundry, shopping, and cooking, especially if you live alone.
Avoid any movement that strains your new joint, like jumping, heavy lifting, and running. These rough and repeated motions before full recovery can damage the prosthetic and may cause it to come loose.
You can also make the necessary adjustments to your house to make it easier and safer to navigate. If you prepare for your recovery period, it will become less challenging to go about your daily life. Here are things to consider before you go to the operating room:
- Arrange a living space within a single floor as it might be hard to climb stairs.
- Install a handrail or safety bars in the bath or shower.
- Make sure handrails are secure.
- Prepare a chair with a firm back and cushions, as well as a footstool to keep the leg elevated.
- Get loose cords and rugs out of the way.
- Buy a stable chair or bench for showers.
Resumption Of Physical Activities
Your physical therapist will craft a personalized exercise plan to help you get used to your new joint. This program usually starts with mild stretches and gradually progresses to strengthening and range of motion exercises.
It is helpful to keep moving every day, even if it’s only walking for a few minutes, to maximize the benefits of the prosthetic. After two to three months, you should be able to resume physical activities.
Long Term Care
With proper care and maintenance, the prosthetic should last for fifteen to twenty years.
Make sure to go to regular appointments to keep your doctor aware of your status. During these checkups, your doctor may order X-rays and other diagnostic procedures to check the health of your knee joint.
In some cases, an infection can develop in the skin at the incision site. If you experience any of these symptoms, get in touch with your orthopedic doctor immediately:
- Persistent fever over 101 degrees Fahrenheit
- Chills or shaking
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
- Worsening tenderness, swelling, or redness of the wound
- Worsening pain with rest and activity
- Drainage from the wound
If you like having a physically active lifestyle, try to avoid high-impact sports. High-impact activities can wear out your replacement joint faster, leading to further surgeries. Consult your doctor for what the best physical activities for you would be after surgery.
Knee Replacement Surgery In North Dakota
Knee replacement surgery is a safe and effective procedure to relieve knee pain. It can help you get back to the life you love.
If you would like to learn more about knee replacement surgery, visit The Bone & Joint Center today. Founded in 1974, our orthopedic practice is dedicated to delivering general and specialized care to patients. We have eleven convenient locations all over North Dakota to serve you. You may call us at (701) 946-7400 / (866) 900-8650 or book an appointment online today.