Successful Knee Replacement Surgery
Successful knee replacement traditionally requires a considerable investment of time and energy in rehabilitation following the surgery. Since the beginning of modern knee replacement in the 1960’s there has been a constant improvement in the hardware available to replace the human knee. Post surgery rehabilitation, however, has seen very little change over the years. Rehabilitation begins in the hospital, usually the day after surgery. During this period a strict timetable of exercise, rest, and medication is of paramount importance to the success of the surgery. You will feel pain immediately after knee replacement surgery (from muscles disturbed during the operation, rather than from the implant itself). Managing pain (dialing in the right pain solution) can be a difficult challenge for some.
Recovery after knee replacement surgery requires your active participation. You will focus on building strength and regaining flexibility. If you engage a physical therapist, he/she may use techniques such as massage and application of cold to minimize swelling (which hinders flexibility). There are some useful exercises to perform at home. Use of continuous passive motion therapy using a (CPM) machine for rehabilitation has not been shown to increase motion or to improve recovery. Patient outcomes from the use of a PMKR machine (specifically the X10 Knee Machine) has consistently outperformed conventional hands-on physical therapy as well as the CPM machine.
After Knee Replacement Surgery: Traditional Rehabilitation
With traditional hand-on rehabilitation, recovery from a knee replacement when measured by range of motion is usually 50% complete within six weeks after knee replacement surgery. At six (6) months range of motion recovery reaches about 108º which is almost full function. Full recovery (including full strength, range of motion and pain elimination) can take a year, sometimes even longer. At one year 50% of patients do not achieve full functional range of motion although most have virtually eliminated knee pain.•
A Reasonable Body Weight: You can increase your chances of having a successful recovery by keeping excess weight off. After surgery, overall complication rates are more than double in obese people. Some studies show that obese people are more likely than individuals of a normal body weight to develop infections after surgery. Experts attribute the increased risk to the difficulty of keeping adjacent skinfolds clean as well as other common problems in obese people, such as diabetes and poor blood circulation that predispose them to infection. Blood clots and pneumonia also occur more often after knee replacement surgery in obese people than in individuals at a near-normal body weight. Because of all of these risks, some surgeons refuse to operate on obese patients unless they lose weight before the operation.
After knee replacement surgery rehabilitation has traditionally been a significant challenge for obese and clinically obese people facing knee replacement surgery. After the operation, it is important to get the affected joint in motion again, and the larger the joint and limb, the more difficult this will be. However, the record of recovery success for obese individuals is no different when using PMKR machines (specifically the X10 Knee Rehabilitation Machine). Studies have proven that obese people recover as quickly as those with a moderate BMI on the X10. Every bit of weight loss helps, reducing the risk of complications and making a quick recovery more likely.
More on Knee Replacement Surgery
The most common type of arthroplasty (joint replacement) is total joint replacement. In this procedure, the entire diseased or damaged knee joint is removed and replaced with an artificial one (a prosthesis) to relieve pain and restore function.
Knee replacement surgery has its risks. Complications, such as blood clots and infections, can occur. Precautions can be taken to control them. In addition, the road to recovery after knee replacement surgery can be challenging and time consuming if you do not use the best approach to recovery.
You may worry that you are too old too benefit from having a total knee replacement. Do not worry Even osteoarthritis patients 75 and older appear to benefit from joint replacement surgery, as a study in the Archives of Internal Medicine has indicated. Researchers followed 174 elderly patients with severe knee or hip osteoarthritis—average age 75—for 12 months, assessing them at six weeks, six months, and one year.
Surgeons continually seek ways to make joint replacements and repairs easier, safer and less arduous for the patient. A number of new techniques are currently under development for both the operating room and after surgery. Most notably the new class of rehab machine, PMKR machines, have made recovery much easier.
Designed specifically to fit a woman’s knee, female knee replacements have been available only in recent years. Prior to 2006, when the Gender Solutions knee was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), knee replacements were unisex—designed to fit both men and women.
If you are facing a knee replacement or have already had one, you should talk to your physician about the risks of physical activity, such as a loosening or dislocation of the replacement and the possible need for a repeat surgery (called a Revision). Odds are that a knee replacement won’t get in the way of your tennis game or keep you off the driving range.
Back to Top After Knee Replacement Surgery: Rehab and Recovery
Pressure Modulated Knee Rehabilitation | Accelerated Knee Surgery Recovery
The X10™ is a PMKR™ Machine. It is Pressure Modulated, reading your knee’s comfort and pressure to deliver productive therapy at each moment during a session. With the X10™ you will regain your range of motion and strength much more quickly after ACL, MCL, Knee Replacement Surgery and Manipulation Under Anesthesia (MUA).
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