There are different types of knee surgery, and each has its advantages. Your orthopedic surgeon will recommend the best option depending on your condition. These procedures aim to relieve your symptoms, like pain, stiffness, and immobility, and help you live an active life.
Patients undergoing knee surgery are likely to resume normal activities once they recover fully. Let’s talk about the three keys to a successful and speedier recovery and where you can go for world-class knee surgery in San Antonio, TX.
1. Prepare Your Homeand Yourself Before Surgery
You must get your home ready before you undergo surgery. In particular, knee surgery will cause limited mobility within the initial days after the procedure.
You will want your surroundings to be easy to navigate while you recover.
Get Your Home Ready
Find out how you can simplify your life during recovery. Then, make the necessary changes and improvements at home.
To prepare your home:
- Inspect each area for potential tripping hazards or path blockages
- Clear out all loose cords and wires
- Stow away slippery mats, carpets, and rugs that you could trip over.
You should also install supportive fixtures along the areas you usually pass through. Add a handrail inside the bathroom to help you when you shower and use the toilet. Place non-stick floor stickers in your room and living room.
Make sure that your kitchen has a stock of food, beverages, and other snacks that you might want. Have your usual devices ready as well to keep you occupied during recovery.
Get Yourself Ready
Your doctor will prescribe a list of medical screenings, tests, and evaluations for you to undergo before surgery. You should start completing them at least one month before the procedure.
Orthopedic surgeons also recommend strengthening your body during the weeks and days leading up to the operation. They may suggest light physical training to ensure you are strong enough for surgery and recovery.
2. Light Exercise and Physical Therapy After Surgery
While some light physical training may be beneficial before surgery, it is even more vital after. Your doctor will refer you to a therapist to help speed up your recovery.
Knee surgery patients typically spend, at most, three days in the hospital after the procedure. Your healthcare providers will encourage light movement to begin strengthening the knee within that period. That includes gradually sitting, standing, and walking around.
Once discharged from the hospital, you will coordinate with a physical therapist regarding a rehabilitation plan. Usually, the sessions occur twice or thrice weekly for about six weeks after surgery.
Within three months of regular physical therapy, you should be able to stretch and extend your leg. You may also be capable of bending the knee to at least 110 degrees.
The following months will consist of a standard workout plan to strengthen the knee joint further. You may expect some pain and discomfort during this time.
Just keep in mind not to overdo it when you exercise. You may be overworking yourself if you notice any pain that won’t go away or inflammation in the knee area.
Some helpful tips to follow during recovery are:
- Avoid standing still for extended periods to prevent swelling in the ankles
- Use walking aids such as crutches, walkers, and walking sticks to support the knee joint
- Do not bend down for the first couple of weeks after surgery
- Do not carry or lift heavy objects for the first couple of weeks after surgery
- Follow your exercise plan diligently to gain back mobility
You must also observe your knee for any blood clots, infections, or potential pulmonary embolisms. Lastly, place your knee on a footstool or pillow while you sit to keep it raised.
3. Monitor the Wound Regularly After Surgery
Following the operation, your surgeon will discuss specific aftercare instructions for your wound. You must always keep the surgical site dry and clean, especially if the surgical stitches and staples are fresh.
Elevate your knee while sitting down and sleeping to minimize inflammation. You may also apply a cold compress to the area.
For any pain, your doctor will prescribe a painkiller to reduce soreness and discomfort. Be sure not to take aspirin because it makes you more prone to bleeding.
An infection may occur if you don’t care for your wound properly. Contact your doctor if you observe or experience:
- Severe pain around the affected area
- Inflammation, redness, and bleeding
- Drainage or fluid leakage from the wound
- Foul odor from the incision area
- Chest pain
- Pain in your foot, ankle, or calf that won’t go away or worsens
- Fever that reaches 101 degrees Fahrenheit or higher
- Shortness of breath
Orthopedic Clinic in San Antonio, TX
Are you looking for an orthopedic clinic near you? The Center for Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine provides top-notch treatment and rehabilitation services for people recovering from knee issues. Our team of talented knee replacement surgeons is board-certified and well-trained in caring for knee surgery patients. You can expect hands-on guidance before, during, and after your procedure to ensure a successful recovery.
To know more, call us today at (210) 692-7400. You may also schedule a consultation with our orthopedic surgeons by filling in our online request form.