“Very often, we see people put off an important knee replacement surgery because they’re worried about the recovery period” says Dr. Nitiraj Oberoi. “They think they’ll be in a lot of pain for a long time and getting better will be difficult. But that’s not always the case.”
This is a valid fear. Any surgery, whether it’s major or minor, comes with its risks and benefits, so the decision to have one should be taken with careful consideration. Still, there’s no reason to be afraid of a knee replacement.
“A knee replacement surgery can help immensely” says Dr. Nitiraj. “Most times, people who have a knee replacement surgery can get significant relief from their pain and are able to move more easily than before. You’re looking at an overall improvement in the quality of life.”
Recovery After a Knee Replacement Surgery
Generally, recovery after a knee replacement surgery takes between three to six weeks, and the rehabilitation begins almost immediately after your procedure.
According to Dr. Abhishek Mishra, people are asked to move their ankles and feet as soon as their surgery is done and movement is initiated the same day or the next day. This is done in order reduce blood-flow related complications and to help patients feel more confident about their abilities.
“Physical therapy is essential for the recovery period” Dr Aman Sachdeva reminds “which will begin while you’re still admitted in the hospital. Our goal is to facilitate as much movement as possible before you go back home.”
Immediate recovery after your surgery will include knee strengthening exercises with your physiotherapist. You will also be encouraged to move around using crutches or a walking stick. “You may feel some initial discomfort because of the swelling in your legs” says Dr. Biren Nadkarni “but it will pass.”
Resuming Normal Activity after a Knee Surgery
While complete recovery after a knee surgery can be a long process, most people can resume light activities like walking and simple household chores with a couple of weeks. Other low-impact activities like swimming, long walks, or biking can be resumed after around six weeks of therapy.
“Your doctor will prescribe exercises and precautions for you to follow once you’re back home” says Dr. Dhaon. “We want you to be careful about avoiding pressure and strain on your knee, so make sure you follow those instructions closely. Wear the right shoes, use you walking aids, keep your leg raised when you’re sitting. All of these little things add up for a faster recovery.”
We hope we’ve answered all your concerns. Please leave us a comment if you have any further questions.