How long does it take to recover from
a knee or hip replacement?
September 26, 2018
A common question that we encounter at Hinton Orthopedics is "How long does it take to recover from a knee or hip replacement?" This is a very important question—and one that depends on a variety of factors. However, there is a general recovery process that we can expect following a normal, complication-free operation.
After Surgery While the entire process of recovery can last several weeks, recovery actually begins immediately following the surgery. Once Dr. Hinton inserts the new joint during the procedure, the new knee or hip is ready for use!
Many patients are under the impression that they should be careful after surgery because they think the joint is tender or needs time to heal before it is ready to be used. On the contrary, it is almost impossible for a patient to "mess up" their new joint. It is very strong and durable, despite having just been inserted into the body.
Patients may feel a slight pain around their joint, which many mistake as joint pain. They are actually recovering from the muscle being moved to put the joint in place. The joint itself is as strong as it will ever be.
Physical Therapy On the day of surgery, the physical therapist will stand and walk with the patient to get them comfortable and used to their new joint. Therapy continues the day after surgery as well. While back at home, patients continue therapy with Home Health on a daily basis.
Most patients graduate from having to use a walker to being able to walk with just a cane within the first two or three weeks. By weeks three, four and five, many patients are walking independently. Finally, patients reach full recovery when they are moving around in their everyday lives without even remembering that they had surgery within the last six months or a year. This is how we know we’ve done our job well and how patients know that they made the right choice in getting their joint replaced.
Using Your New Joint It’s important to understand that patients should use the joint often, especially by walking around. The reason patients have this surgery is so that they can get around more comfortably, naturally and pain-free. Don’t be afraid of using the joint!
Hinton Orthopedics does not believe in putting restrictions on patients as to how they use their new joint. Activities such as golf, tennis and dancing are not only permitted, they are encouraged! The knee can be knelt on or bent when playing sports, exercising, climbing and a variety of other fun activities.
Recovering from joint replacement surgery is a breeze with Hinton Orthopedics! If you have any questions for Dr. Hinton or our staff about recovery or joint replacement, please do not hesitate to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at (337) 477-5252.