Updated: Mar 3
Do you want to know the fastest way to recover from knee replacement surgery, so you can get back to moving as freely as possibly, and being able to do the daily activities you once took for granted?
If so, this blog contains expert advice for YOU!
In the US, there are around 800,000 knee replacement surgeries each year, with a very high percentage of these surgeries are performed on people over the age of 60.
In our Lexington clinic, we have worked with many patients who have had knee replacement surgery, and they aren’t happy with the level of movement, or the level of pain that they are dealing with.
We appreciate how frustrating this can be - You take the risk of surgery, and it doesn't give you the results you want!
While knee replacement surgery is sometimes inevitable and might be the best option for you, it is by no means a guaranteed fix, and there is important prehab and rehab to do if you want the best results.
The Fastest Way To Recover From Knee Replacement Surgery
If you are recovering from knee replacement surgery, and you want to speed up the process so you can get back to walking, playing with the grandchildren, or you simply want to be able to move freely and pain-free, we have top tips to help you do that.
Move Little and Often, Every Hour
Once your doctor has cleared you to move your knee and walk, it is important to do so little and often (a good target is to aim to move every hour).
This reduces the risk of complications such as blood clots, improves circulation, and the movement helps deliver important nutrients to your knee, so you heal and recover quicker than if you sat for long period of the time each day.
Usually, you will be able to start walking while you are still in the hospital, so this is something that can be done relatively early in your recovery.
Use Equipment Provided To You
You will typically be given some form of walking aids when you are discharged from hospital following your knee replacement surgery, and these should be used to help you safely move at home.
It may be tempting to think that you should avoid using walking aids, however, this is a mistake.
Walking unaided too soon can put too much stress on your knee and the surrounding muscles leading to injury, or delayed recovery.
So, while we understand that you want to get better quickly, be careful not to rush your recovery.
Follow Your Exercise Plan
After knee replacement surgery, you should be given a list of exercises to perform which will help you improve your range of motion (how much you can bend and straighten your knee), and then strengthen the surrounding muscles.
It may be difficult initially, but once you get into the habit of regularly walking and doing your exercise, you’ll feel much better, and recover much quicker.
While we can't prescribe specific exercises for you in a blog, if you are concerned that your exercise plan isn’t helping you, feel free to reach out to our team who can help.
To speak to a member of our physical therapy team and find out how we can help recover faster from your knee replacement surgery, arrange a Free Knee Surgery Recovery Assessment which is great if you are unsure whether physical therapy is right for you.
Avoid Kneeling, Or Putting Pressure Against Your Knee
After surgery, your knee will be very sore and swollen, so avoid kneeling or putting any pressure against it to minimise the discomfort.
In the earlier phases of recovery, one of the main goal is to reduce swelling.
By reducing swelling in your knee, you can increase the range of motion (how much you can straighten and bend your knee).
By kneeling, or putting pressure against your knee, you are likely to make the swelling worse and therefore, this will slow down your recovery.
Avoid High Impact Activities Or Activities With A High Risk Of Falling, Or Twisting Your Knee
Later in your recover, and once you have started to move better and more freely, it is important to be cautious of activities with high impact such as running or jumping, and activities with a high risk of falling, or that could result in twisting your knee.
If you participate in these exercise, your knee - which is still recovering and building strength and stability - is at a greater risk of injury.
Instead you can still keep active in a safe way by choosing low impact activities like cycling or swimming.
Get Great Sleep and Rest
While we have spoken about the importance of exercise and movement, we also need to make sure that when you are getting sufficient rest.
Therefore, aim to get 8 or more hours sleep each night, if not more, and when you are resting, keep your leg elevated, and apply ice (or a bag of frozen peas) wrapped in a towel for 20 minutes every 4 hours to reduce any swelling after your knee surgery.
Seek Additional Support With Physical Therapy
If you have had your knee replacement surgery, and struggling to move freely, still experiencing pain, and still not able to do what you wanted to do, then reach out to our expert team.
We have worked with patients who were disappointed with the results after surgery and came to us looking for more support.
At Titan Physical Therapy, we are able to provide hands on treatment, and complete treatment plans which will not just get you to a minimum quality of life (which is the usual standard of aftercare you'll likely receive) but will enable you to do the things you love again without pain or stiffness in your knee!
To find our more, we offer Free Knee Surgery Recovery Assessment, where you can speak to a member of our team, ask any questions that you have, and find out what’s stopping you from getting the life you thought you were going to have post-surgery.
Arrange Your Free Knee Surgery Recovery Assessment
The Best Way To Prepare For Knee Replacement Surgery
As well as helping people post-operation, we have worked with a number of patients who were on the waiting list for surgery and were able to improve the chances of a full recovery by completing a prehab plan which stabilised and strengthened the muscles around the knee.
Exercises that can help prepare your knee for surgery may include:
By doing great prehab, you are increasing the speed at which you will recover from your knee replacement surgery.
How To Recovery Quickly From Knee Replacement Surgery
If you are currently recovering from knee replacement surgery, or scheduled to have surgery in the near future, our team can help!
We can work with you to end your agonising knee pain, the swelling in your knees or make it easier to get out of the car, out of bed, or up from your chair.
Recovering from surgery and achieving the pain-free movement you are desperate for isn't guaranteed, and we often see people who've not got the results they wanted after their knee surgery.
If this sounds like you, then now is the time to get the support you really need.
At Titan Physical Therapy, we have helped thousands of patients, and helped hundreds of people just like you who are experiencing daily knee pain and unable to move freely.
We have a number of options available to you:
Or if you want to get some more personalised advice, we offer you the opportunity to speak to a member of our physical therapy team on a 1-1 basis in our Lexington clinic…
In this Free Knee Surgery Recovery Assessment, we will discuss your knee pain, and identify the underlying cause, as well as outlining what you natural, drug-free solutions are available to you.
Arrange Your Free Knee Surgery Recovery Assessment
Other Free Resources To Help You Stay Active, Healthy and Pain-Free
Read Our Blog - 9 Ways To Stay Healthy And Reduce Your Fall Risk
Read Our Blog - How To Improve Balance