A surgery is usually performed on patients having severe arthritis where the main focus is to eradicate pain, although surgeries will exempt you from high impact exercise such as running and jumping. Preventive measures need to be taken care of to avoid post-operative complications after surgery.
Using walker/cane: you will be unable to get out of the bed the same day or day after your surgery. However, if your knee isn’t strong enough to get adequate control you won’t be able to walk any further. You may be provided with a walking aid like a cane, stick or brace. When using a walking aid you should move the walking aid forward first followed by operated leg then the normal un-operated leg last. This puts lesser stress on the operated leg and helps healing process to speed up without any stress.
Manage the swelling: as an outcome of surgical procedure your knee may well for up to three months or more after operation. If this happens, elevation of your leg by using a pillow as a support under your backside of knee cap will reduce the swelling. Use of an ice –pack gives a soothing effect as well and reduces the pain at surgery site. Ice –pack or a gel pack must be wrapped in a towel or tea towel before being placed on the knee. Do not keep the ice-pack any longer than 10 minutes. If you keep the ice-pack for more than 10 minutes of time your body will increase the blood flow to the area in an attempt to warm up the tissues again. This will make the swelling worst. Keep a gap of 20 minutes before each application.
Physical therapy exercises: some proper expert exercises are advised by a physiotherapist to restore full functionality of your knee so avoid immobilization and prevent blood clots in the calves. Blood clots can lead to other severe complications. To avoid this physiotherapist will give you a few exercises to practise on daily basis.
Avoid infection: your knee slightly remains warm for up to 3-6 months after surgery. If your wound leaks and your dressing needs changing before your appointment contact you orthopaedic surgeon immediately. If you feel your knee has become redder, increasingly more painful or discharging pus. You feel unwell with high temperature it is a sign of infection.
Manage pain: after your knee surgery it will relieve the arthritic pain from the joint itself, but because of the trauma to the soft tissues surrounding the joint during surgery you may experience some pain. Taking some painkiller to relive the pain will be helpful. Some painkiller post-surgery will also be advised by your surgeon to get you comfortable rest and painless sleep for a speedy recovery.