Life after Knee Replacement
Damage from arthritis is the most common reason for knee replacement. Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are two major arthritis problems when your knee surgeon can recommend knee replacement after the first-line treatments fail to show their efficacy. During the procedure, the injured or ailing knee is replaced with an artificial joint or prosthesis. The materials of the prosthesis are plastics, polymers, and metals to mimic the function of a knee. However, selecting the prosthesis depends on various factors such as weight, age, overall health, and activity level.
Although the procedure of replacing your old knee with a prosthetic takes less than two hours, recovery and rehabilitation can take months. After a knee replacement, your lifestyle will get back on track just like before surgery, but without the suffering of pain. Slowly and steadily, you can resume your everyday activities but have some limitations. You will have to avoid doing the activities that put excessive stress on your new knees such as jogging and any other high-impact sports.
A recovery and rehabilitation plan can help in the speedy recovery and provide the following benefits –
- Getting discharge from the hospital sooner
- Capable of regaining knee strength and range of motion quickly
- Capable of getting back daily routine
- Help to avoid potential complications
Discharge from the Hospital
After surgery, discharge from the hospital may take 3 to 5 days. It depends on the recovery speed of patient to patient.
Possible Surgical Complications
There are rare cases of medical complications after knee replacement surgery. Some serious infections such as a knee joint infection can occur in less than 2 % of patients.
Recovery at Home
Physical Activity: It is essential to be physically active during recovery. A day after the surgery, you will be monitored and guided by a physical therapist who will suggest some exercises to regain full leg and knee movements. It is necessary to resume several normal physical activities within 3-6 weeks of the treatment.
Exercises: Your physical therapist will suggest some lower impact fitness activities like bicycling, playing golf, and light tennis activities are beneficial for speedy recovery instead of high-impact activities.
You will have to be careful of falling as it can damage the knee and may need further surgery. It is important to take the help of a caregiver or walking devices like a cane, walker, or handrail until the knee gains strength and mobility.
During the initial year of the surgery, it is important to have routine follow-up visits to your orthopedic surgeon who will monitor how your knees are functioning.
Dr. Biren Nadkarni is one of the best knee replacement surgeons in Delhi providing treatments for all bone and joint disorders. He has over 20 years of work experience in the field. He has successfully performed several knee and joint surgeries such as Partial Knee Replacement, revision kneed replacement, total knee replacement, and joint preservation.