If your orthopedic surgeon has recommended knee replacement surgery to repair damage from an injury or from a disorder, such as arthritis, you'll want to be prepared for the road to recovery after the procedure. Talk your orthopedic surgeon about any concerns you may have, and use this guide to help you through the recovery process.
While your orthopedic team may want to get you up and walking around shortly after your surgery, you may need assistance with mobility. Your doctors may recommend the use of a walker, cane, or crutches so you can begin to move without putting the full force of your weight on the new knee. To prepare for this, consider asking which mobility aid your doctor suggests, and practice using it in the days before your surgery. This will help to give you a better idea of how you will feel as you begin to recover from your surgery.
Physical therapy will be key to helping you recover and gain your strength back after total knee replacement surgery. Your physical therapist will help you to learn new exercises you can use to recover from the procedure. These exercises can help to improve muscle strength and flexibility as well as increase blood flow to aid in the healing process. Talk to your physical therapist about which exercises you can do at home or on your own in the hospital to aid in your recovery, and be sure to practice them with the therapist present so you can be sure you are performing them properly.
You may experience pain or discomfort after the procedure, and your doctor may be able to prescribe medication to help relieve these symptoms. Tell your orthopedist about any medications you currently take, as this will help to prevent serious drug interactions. You'll also want to discuss any medications you are allergic to or that you have had a negative reaction to in the past. If you have arthritis, consider asking your pharmacist for bottles that are easy to open. You may also want to have a friend or family member help to dispense the medication in the days after your surgery so you can focus on feeling better without having to keep track of your prescription schedule.
Ask your orthopedic surgeon in advance about your aftercare plan so you can go over all the details together. Don't be afraid to ask questions if you are unsure about the surgery itself or the healing process. Knowing what to expect can help you to cope with the situation and get on the road to recovery from your knee replacement surgery. To learn more, contact a company like Progress West Hospital.