Recovering from any kind of surgery is quite a task, and so is the case with Total Knee Replacement Surgery. Knee Replacement Surgery helps you move with better ease than before but it is important to take care of yourself during the rehabilitation period.
Things to follow after a Total Knee Replacement Surgery
- Try to keep yourself comfortable
This is one of the foremost things that you need to pay attention to. Over-exertion is not recommended after surgery. So try not to climb many stairs right away.
Set up your room in a way that provides you with the most comfort. Also try to keep everything of your immediate need with you such as:
- Pillows for elevating your leg
- A telephone or bell to call for help
- A bedside urinal if the bathroom is not accessible
- Comfortable clothes
- Ice packs for the knees, etc.
- Use a walker or a cane for sometime
A walker or cane can prevent you from falling and damaging your new knee. These also work as a signal to strangers to be cautious when around you. You may not need the walker or cane for a long time but only until you are fully recovered and your body has accepted its new knee.
- Do not hesitate to take pain-killers
Many people try to bear the pain and avoid pain-killers for the fear of getting addicted or some other reason. However, if the pain is not controlled, it can become a hurdle in performing the rehabilitation exercises and therefore may slow your recovery process.
If you still feel that too many pain-killers may be bad for your health, you may fix an appointment with your orthopaedic doctor and work out a pain management plan that involves the least consumption of pain-killers.
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- Ask for Help
It is only natural for your body to take some time to adjust to the changes that come after surgery. Therefore you should not force it to do regular household chores or strenuous activities that you did before surgery.
It is best to ask for help from your family and friends during the rehabilitation period. Your body requires some rest and exercises to recover in the best way and as quickly as possible.
- Treat the Swelling
Swelling in the knee after a knee replacement surgery is quite uncomfortable and it makes movement for exercises very difficult, if not impossible. Therefore you should treat the swelling by using ice-packs, elevating your leg for some time, and taking Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce inflammation and pain.
- Speak with your physiotherapist about your priorities
When getting your physiotherapy, it is important to talk to the doctor about your plans. Understanding your concern, your physiotherapist will then personalise a knee rehabilitation program accordingly.
For example, if you want to get back to playing some sport, your physiotherapist will teach you exercises to prepare your knee for that particular sport.
- Follow up with your doctor regularly
You may still need to visit the hospital after getting a knee replacement surgery. Apart from getting physical therapy, it is important to fix yearly appointments with your orthopaedic doctor as well. These appointments can help detect problems with the artificial knee even when symptoms are not visible.
- Try to avoid infections as far as possible
Although no one gets infected on purpose, it is important to be extra cautious after getting a total knee replacement surgery. An infection is extra harmful to the artificial knee and an operation may be required to remove it.
- Stay surrounded by family and friends
Apart from physical changes, a knee replacement surgery can also affect you mentally. The rehabilitation period can be frustrating for several reasons. Some people are even diagnosed with Post-Surgery Depression.
But having someone to talk to and sharing your feelings makes it much better and helps the rehabilitation period pass quickly and with ease.
Following all the above-mentioned things and working on the pieces of advice of your health-care provider can help avoid a lot of problems. If given the right kind of care, you may not experience any kind of changes in your life.