What to Expect from Physical Therapy and Recovery After a Knee Replacement

You may be surprised to learn that you will be encouraged to begin moving around very soon after your knee replacement surgery. Whether at our facility or at home, walking and completing knee-strengthening exercises are a critical part of your post-surgery recovery. Here’s a look at what you can expect from your physical therapy and recovery period following a knee replacement.

Physical Therapy

During your post-surgery physical therapy, you will be guided through a variety of basic exercises designed to strengthen your knee, maintain your leg’s range of motion, and reduce scar tissue buildup. At first, your exercises will include simply putting weight on your new knee and walking around, bending and straightening your knee, and flexing your leg muscles. As your recovery progresses, you will gradually be able to walk longer distances and can practice climbing steps and moving around without assistance.

Getting Used to Your New Knee

If you’ve grown accustomed to living with knee problems, it may take a while for you to get used to your new knee after surgery and physical therapy. For example, you may notice that your replacement knee feels different from your natural knee, especially when climbing stairs, kneeling, or getting in and out of chairs. You may also experience changes in your range of motion or unusual sounds or sensations in your new knee.

Lifestyle Adjustments

As you gradually make progress after physical therapy, you will still need to take care of your knee replacement and make a few lifestyle adjustments. By avoiding high-impact activities such as running and jumping, for example, you can prevent wear and tear and prolong the lifespan of your knee replacement. You may also need to take extra precautions while driving until you’re fully used to your new knee.

Knee pain, stiffness, and weakness can significantly impact your comfort, mobility, and quality of life. As part of our full range of orthopedic services, 360 Orthopedics offers Sarasota-area patients several knee treatment options and physical therapy assistance. To schedule an appointment, contact us today by calling 941-951-2663.