Knee replacement surgery is a major surgery, but it can be a life-changing procedure for people who are suffering from severe knee pain and limited mobility. If you are considering knee replacement surgery, it is important to understand what to expect before, during, and after the surgery.
Preparing for Knee Replacement Surgery
There are a number of things you can do to prepare for knee replacement surgery. These include:
- Talking to your doctor about your expectations. Be sure to discuss your goals for surgery and any concerns you may have.
- Getting a physical exam and blood tests. Your doctor will need to assess your overall health and fitness to make sure you are a good candidate for surgery.
- Stopping certain medications. Your doctor may ask you to stop taking certain medications, such as blood thinners, in the days leading up to surgery.
- Preparing your home. Make sure your home is safe and accessible after surgery. This may involve removing tripping hazards, installing grab bars in the bathroom, and setting up a temporary sleeping space on the first floor.
- Exercising regularly. Strengthening your muscles before surgery will help you recover more quickly.
- Eating a healthy diet. Eating nutritious foods will help your body heal properly.
The Day of Surgery
On the day of surgery, you will arrive at the hospital early to check in and prepare for surgery. You will be given anesthesia to keep you comfortable during the surgery.
The surgery itself typically takes about 1-3 hours. The surgeon will make an incision in your knee and remove the damaged cartilage and bone. They will then replace the damaged joint with artificial implants.
After surgery, you will be taken to a recovery room where you will be monitored until you are awake and alert. You may spend the night in the hospital, or you may be able to go home the same day.
Once you are home, you will need to follow your doctor's instructions carefully to ensure a proper recovery. This may include:
- Taking pain medication. Your doctor will prescribe pain medication to help you manage pain and discomfort.
- Elevating your leg. Elevating your leg will help to reduce swelling.
- Doing physical therapy exercises. Physical therapy exercises will help you to regain range of motion and strength in your knee.
- Avoiding strenuous activity. You will need to avoid strenuous activity for several weeks after surgery.
The recovery time from knee replacement surgery varies from person to person. However, most people are able to walk without assistance within 2-3 months of surgery.
It is important to be patient and realistic about your recovery. It takes time for your body to heal from major surgery. Be sure to follow your doctor's instructions carefully and listen to your body.
Contact Dr. Herrick J. Siegel
If you are considering knee replacement surgery, Dr. Herrick J. Siegel is a highly experienced and skilled orthopaedic surgeon who can help you achieve the best possible outcome. Dr. Siegel serves patients in the greater Birmingham, Alabama area.
To schedule a consultation with Dr. Siegel, please call (205) 930-8339.
Additional Tips for Knee Replacement Surgery Patients
- Eat a healthy diet. Eating nutritious foods will help your body heal properly. Be sure to eat plenty of protein, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
- Get enough sleep. Sleep is essential for healing. Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep per night.
- Manage your pain. Take your pain medication as prescribed by your doctor. If you are experiencing severe pain, be sure to contact your doctor.
- Be patient. Recovery from knee replacement surgery takes time. Most people are able to walk without assistance within 2-3 months of surgery, but it may take longer to regain full range of motion and strength.
Knee replacement surgery can be a life-changing procedure for people who are suffering from severe knee pain and limited mobility. If you are considering knee replacement surgery, be sure to talk to your doctor about your expectations and any concerns you may have.