Total knee replacement has a very high success rate in relieving pain and bearing upon the ability to mobilize. Overall, 95% of these operations are highly successful and we know that at 10 – 15 years after the surgery 95% are still working very comfortably. In general, the knee replacement will last longer in older and lighter people.
1. Care your knee after knee replacement
It will take 4-6 weeks to return to normal daily activities. To preserve your knee replacement for as long as possible- it helps to avoid heavy impact loading in long distance running, heavy lifting and kneeling. It will help to keep your body weight BMI under 30 as heavier you are the more weight the knee has to carry.
2. Back to Work
Although you may be eager to start back to work, it’s important to give enough time for recovery as well. It also depends on the nature of your work. If you do work from home and sit most of the day, you may be good to go in 10-15 days! Otherwise, it could take four to six weeks before you are well enough to return to work. And if you do physical work, it could even take a few months. You should be able to return to light duties and slowly progress to full duties over 6-12 weeks if your work is physically demanding.
3. Activities of Daily Living
As soon as you feel comfortable standing and can move around, you can resume daily tasks like cooking or cleaning. This might take about three to five weeks. You can also use a pad to cushion your knees if you are required to Kneel
4. Regular Exercise
Regular Exercise after total knee replacement is very important!It will help you regain strength in your knee and speed up your recovery. After 10 to12 weeks, you can start walking longer distances and engaging in activities like bike riding, dancing, yoga and swimming.
This is a very popular question, “How soon can I get behind the wheel again?” If your left knee was replaced, you can probably start driving after a couple of weeks. But if your right knee was replaced, it will be at least three to Six weeks before you can drive again. However, the law is not clear when it comes to your car insurance cover. If you are taking any narcotic analgesia, it is highly advisable not to drive. Make sure you can bend your knee enough to operate the pedals, and if necessary, obtain a disabled placard to avoid walking long distances after parking.
If you need assistance for knee replacement recovery or rehabilitation, the Townsville Lower Limb Clinic team is happy to help you through the process. Dr Kaushik Hazratwala is one of the best orthopaedic surgeons in Townsville region. He has a keen interest in hip and knee replacement. You can contact us by calling 07 4727 4111.