Here at Carrick on Shannon Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic, a total knee replacement operation is one of the common appointments we deal with. We are often (and ideally) involved before the surgery.

Let’s talk through the how a Chartered Physiotherapist can help you make a full recovery. Many people find it helpful to come for a pre-op consultation. This means we can explain what exercises are going to be performed afterwards. We can also start working on building up the muscles around the area giving the new knee a good foundation. Patients agree that it is nice to know what to expect before the procedure. A total knee replacement can be tough but physiotherapy can be a great help prior to and after the surgery!

Knee Replacements are a transformative journey towards greater mobility and improving overall quality of life. The key to a successful recovery is not only in the surgery, but in the pre and post operative care. The Chartered physiotherapist plays a pivotal role in this care but the patient themselves must also take a very active role in their recovery.
Rehabilitation needs to be slow and controlled. It’s also important to mention that each individual is different and recovery time can vary from person to person.
Before the operation, it’s helpful to know in depth about the process of what is involved during the surgery and particularly the commitment required to rehabilitation after the surgery. This education can help you make a decision and from there you can start strengthening exercises on the leg that is going to be affected. If the leg is strong, this can help recovery!

Reclaiming Mobility - The Role Chartered Physiotherapy plays in Knee Replacement Recovery - carrickphysio.com
Reclaiming Mobility - The Role Chartered Physiotherapy plays in Knee Replacement Recovery - carrickphysio.com

Post Operation
Physiotherapy begins shortly after the surgery, focusing on gentle exercises to ensure blood circulation, prevent stiffness and kick start the healing process. This early mobilization is imperative to helping prevent any complications. Gradual controlled movements will be done with the Chartered physiotherapist to restore full range of movement in the joint.
Walking commences the day after your surgery and then other weight bearing exercises to build strength and be able to stand up from sitting down in the early stages after the operation. You will have crutches at this stage, but we will focus on gathering ways to move independently without aids in time. Once we move past the stage of needing a walking aid, we can do more intense exercises in order to become stronger. This might be something we find challenging but it is key to recovering well. Much of the physiotherapy will educate you as the patient to be aware of adhering to exercise routines, pain management, and strategies for doing daily activities. We should feel empowered to actively participate in our recovery.

The early stages focus on range of motion and basic strengthening. After a while, the strength will be more focused on stability and function of the muscles around the hip and knee.
The recovery time for a total knee replacement can vary; and depends significantly on pre-op level, patient compliance with their rehabilitation programme and early intervention.

In conclusion, chartered physiotherapists play a pivotal role in the journey of knee replacement surgery, serving as the bridge between surgery and full recovery. An integral part of the multi-disciplinary team, chartered physiotherapists contribute to the success and long-term benefits of the surgery, enabling you to embrace life and get back to doing what you enjoy, with renewed excitement and mobility.

Reclaiming Mobility - The Role Chartered Physiotherapy plays in Knee Replacement Recovery - carrickphysio.com