Total knee replacement surgery, or arthroplasty, is a major medical intervention that can profoundly relieve those suffering from severe knee arthritis or injury. While the surgical procedure is a significant aspect of the treatment, post-operative care is equally crucial for a successful outcome.
Central to this post-operative care is physiotherapy. Here are ten compelling reasons post-operative physiotherapy for total knee replacement is indispensable.
#1. Facilitation of Early Mobilization
After undergoing total knee replacement surgery, early mobilization is a primary goal. Post-operative physiotherapy for total knee replacement focuses on moving patients, gradually increasing their range of motion. Early movement speeds up recovery and reduces the risk of post-operative complications, such as blood clots or joint stiffness.
#2. Pain Management
Pain and swelling are common after the surgery. Physiotherapy introduces modalities like ice, elevation, and gentle exercises to help manage and reduce post-operative pain. Furthermore, pain typically decreases as muscles get stronger and joint function improves through therapy.
#3. Prevention of Scar Tissue Formation
After surgery, there’s a natural tendency for scar tissue to form around the joint. If unchecked, this can limit the joint’s range of motion. Post-operative physiotherapy for total knee replacement focuses on exercises and techniques to minimize scar tissue formation, ensuring the knee remains flexible and mobile.
#4. Improved Muscle Strength and Endurance
It’s common for individuals to experience muscle atrophy (weakening of muscles) due to limited movement before surgery. One cannot overlook the role of physiotherapy in muscle recovery; therefore, post-operative rehab emphasizes strength training. It ensures that the quadriceps, hamstrings, and calf muscles regain strength and effectively support the new joint.
#5. Increased Confidence in Movement
One overlooked benefit of post-operative physiotherapy for total knee replacement is the psychological aspect. After surgery, patients might feel apprehensive about moving, fearing pain or re-injury. Under trained professionals’ guidance, physiotherapy sessions instil confidence in patients, helping them trust their new joints and gradually return to daily activities and hobbies.
#6. Guidance on Long-term Joint Care
Beyond the immediate post-operative phase, physiotherapy provides patients with knowledge and tools to care for their new knee joint in the long term. This includes advice on avoiding activities, exercises to continue at home, and signs to watch for that might indicate a problem.
#7. Optimization of Gait and Posture
Post-operative physiotherapy for total knee replacement addresses the patient’s walking pattern or gait. Individuals often develop compensatory gait patterns due to prolonged pain or discomfort before surgery. These patterns can persist even after a successful operation. Patients are taught to walk correctly through physiotherapy, ensuring even weight distribution and preventing undue stress on the new joint or adjacent structures.
#8. Reduction of Potential Complications
While total knee replacement is a common procedure with a high success rate, there are potential complications like joint instability, infection, or prosthetic joint issues. Regular post-operative physiotherapy sessions ensure that any potential complications are spotted early. The close monitoring provided by physiotherapists can be instrumental in the early identification and intervention of complications, ensuring timely medical attention if needed.
#9. Promotion of Independent Living
For many patients, a primary goal after surgery is to return to an independent lifestyle, especially among the elderly. Post-operative physiotherapy for total knee replacement teaches patients essential skills, such as safely getting in and out of bed, using the bathroom, climbing stairs, or transitioning between sitting and standing. By addressing these daily tasks in therapy, patients are better equipped to resume independent living, improving their overall quality of life.
#10. Restoration of Joint Function
The main objective of the surgery is to restore knee function. Post-operative physiotherapy for total knee replacement provides targeted exercises and movements that strengthen the muscles around the new joint, ensuring optimal function and stability. It’s not just about movement but about efficient, pain-free, and stable movement.
A total knee replacement is a life-changing procedure, offering patients a chance at a pain-free life with improved mobility. However, the surgical procedure is only half the journey. Post-operative physiotherapy for total knee replacement is pivotal in ensuring that the new joint serves the patient efficiently and effectively for years. Ignoring this critical aspect of recovery might limit the surgery’s benefits, emphasizing why physiotherapy post-operation is not just recommended but essential.
Book your post-operative knee surgery physiotherapy session
Undergoing knee surgery is a significant step towards reclaiming mobility and quality of life. But the journey doesn’t end once you leave the operating room. Proper rehabilitation bridges surgical intervention and a full, active life. Our Calgary physiotherapists specialize in guiding patients through this critical journey as they are trained in the latest rehabilitation techniques specifically tailored for post-operative knee surgery patients.
With years of experience under our belts, we’re adept at handling unique challenges and ensuring optimal recovery.
Book your post-operative knee surgery physiotherapy session with Vista Physiotherapy today!
Let our team of experts guide you through a structured, evidence-based recovery process. Your knee deserves the best, and so do you.