Recovery is a very crucial part of total knee replacement surgery. The time taken for recovery can vary depending on the individual and the type of surgery done (unilateral or bilateral total knee replacement surgery).
After a total knee replacement surgery, it may take up to 12 weeks (3 months) to recover. However, you may be able to resume your typical household chores after about 4 to 6 weeks by committing to your rehabilitation exercises and performing the activities as advised by your surgeon and physiotherapist. You will take 6 months to a year to fully recover from TKR surgery,
But the main question that hovers in everyone’s mind is, “What can I expect one year after my total knee replacement?” Read on to understand this better.
What is Total Knee Replacement?
Total knee replacement (TKR) is a surgical procedure in which the damaged or worn-out parts of the knee joint are removed and replaced with artificial components. The knee joint is made up of three bones: the thigh bone (femur), the shin bone (tibia), and the kneecap (patella). In a TKR, the damaged or worn-out surface of the thigh and shin bone is removed and replaced with artificial components, usually made of metal and plastic. The patella may also be resurfaced. TKR aims to relieve pain and improve knee function by replacing the damaged or worn-out parts of the knee with artificial components.
What Are The Changes You Will Notice After 1 Year of TKR Surgery?
One year after a total knee replacement (TKR) surgery, most people experience a significant improvement in their knee function and decreased pain. However, the specific recovery and outcome will depend on factors such as the patient’s age, overall health, and the type of surgery performed. Here are some general guidelines for what to expect one year after TKR surgery:
- Pain: Most patients will experience significantly less pain one year after TKR surgery. Some may have occasional discomfort, but it would be manageable with over-the-counter pain medication.
- Range of motion: After one year, most patients will have regained a normal range of motion in their knee. They should be able to bend and straighten the knee with ease.
- Strength: After one year, most patients will have regained significant strength in their knees. They should be able to walk, climb stairs, and perform other activities without difficulty.
- Physical activity: Most patients will be able to return to low-impact activities such as walking, swimming, and cycling. High-impact activities such as running and jumping may be limited or not possible.
- Functionality: Most patients will be able to perform routine daily activities without difficulty one year after TKR surgery. They can walk, climb stairs, and perform other activities without difficulty.
It’s important to remember that recovery and healing time can vary from person to person. Even though most patients will have a significant improvement in their knee function one year after TKR surgery, it’s still important to follow your surgeon and physical therapist’s instructions and guidelines to ensure proper recovery and healing, and to maintain proper knee function.
Will There be Any Limitations In Knee Movement 1 Year After a TKR Surgery?
After a total knee replacement (TKR) surgery, most people experience a significant improvement in their knee function and a decrease in pain. However, some limitations in knee movement may still be present one year after the surgery. The specific limitations will depend on various factors such as the patient’s age, overall health, and the type of surgery performed.
Some common limitations that may be present one year after TKR surgery include:
- Some stiffness and discomfort may still be present, and can be managed with occasional icing, cold compression and painkillers.
- Range of motion may be slightly limited compared to a normal knee, but most patients will have regained a normal range of motion iby this time and would be able to bend and straighten the knee with ease.
- High-impact activities such as running and jumping may be limited or not possible as it may cause excessive stress on the artificial knee.
- Patients may still need to avoid deep knee bends and prolonged sitting with a fully bent knee to prevent excessive stress on the artificial knee.
- Some patients may experience difficulty with stairs, uneven terrain or other activities that require maintenance of balance and coordination.
It’s important to remember that recovery and healing time can vary from person to person. Even though most patients will show a significant improvement in their knee function one year after TKR surgery, it’s still important to follow your surgeon and physical therapist’s instructions to ensure proper recovery and healing. This will help you to regain the normal functionality of the knee.
What Are The Activities I Cannot do After Complete Recovery From TKR?
After complete recovery from TKR, your surgeon will advise you to indulge in normal daily activities. But they would also make you aware of some of the activities you should avoid even after complete recovery:
- You should not ski or play sports that require pushing, twisting, running, etc. (like football and soccer), as these might cause damage to your artificial knee. You will be advised to do activities like gardening, swimming, golfing, etc., that are low-impact.
- You should take small steps while taking a turn during walking and not pivot on the operated leg.
- You should avoid jerking on the operated leg.
- You should not lift heavy weights as it may cause strain on your artificial knee. This includes not lifting any grocery bags, laundry, heavy weights, hard gymming, lifting pets, holding children, etc.
Recovery After One Year of TKR
As the knee heals and becomes stronger, you will gradually be able to put more weight on it and do more activities. Most patients will return to their normal activities, such as walking, climbing stairs, and driving, within 3 to 6 months. However, it may take up to a year or more for patients to fully recover and for their knee to feel completely normal again. It’s important for patients to follow their physical therapy routine and to continue with exercises at home to help aid in their recovery.
Almost all patients experience significant improvement in their pain and mobility after 3 to 6 months of TKR surgery and are able to return to their normal activities, such as walking, climbing stairs, and driving. Complete recovery is seen within a year after the surgery. The success rate for TKR is typically around 90-95%, with most patients experiencing a significant reduction in pain and an improvement in their quality of life. It’s also important to follow up with the orthopedic surgeon and physical therapist to ensure that the recovery is going well. Make sure you go for expert advice when it comes to your health. Contact us at Medfin for any guidance on total knee replacement surgery.
Disclaimer: The content on this site is the copyright of Medfin and is intended for informational and educational purposes only. This should not be considered as a substitute for medical and surgical expertise. Results from any treatments or surgeries are subjective to an individual patient and the type of procedure/surgery performed. Please seek professional help regarding any medical concerns. Medfin will not be responsible for any act or omission arising from the interpretation of the content present on this page.