Preparing for your revision total knee replacement
Preparation begins prior to your admission to hospital. Your surgeon will discuss your surgery and what to expect.
Arrangements should be made in advance to prepare for your recovery including:
- Ensuring your home is free from tripping hazards,
- Ensuring regularly used items are easily accessible,
- Arranging to have someone at home with you or to check in on you when you are discharged.
- A referral to the pre-admission service at the hospital you are having your surgery at can be very useful in helping you plan your discharge following your stay.
Your surgeon may refer you to have:
Routine blood tests and other investigations prior to your surgery.
A pre-rehabilitation physiotherapy review to ensure you are as fit as possible prior to your surgery
A review by peri-operative physician, if you have medical problems that need to be managed around the time of your surgery
You will be given instructions regarding your medications and it is important you follow these. These may include:
- Cease blood thinning medication such as aspirin and anti-inflammatory medications up to 10 days prior to your surgery
- Cease naturopathic or herbal medications 10 days prior to your surgery
- Ceasing certain medications used to treat inflammatory arthritis such as Rheumatoid arthritis
Certain lifestyle risk factors can slow your healing following your surgery. In preparation for your recovery aim to:
- Eat healthy
- Quit smoking
- Limit alcohol intake
- Reduce weight if overweight (follow medical advice on safe exercise prior to and following surgery)
Remember to bring your x-rays with you to hospital.
Following your surgery, you will usually remain in hospital for 5-7 days. In this time, you may require antibiotics and pain relief. A physiotherapist will start you moving and help you with post-operative exercises as soon as your are assessed as being safe to move, which in most cases is the day of the surgery. It is important you follow the instructions of the physiotherapist to ensure you get the best out of your new knee.
You will need to use a walking aid initially following the surgery. Once you are assessed as safe, you can also stop using this.
On discharge, you will be given an appointment to see your surgeon as an outpatient. You will also need to continue physiotherapy as instructed.
Recovering from revision knee replacement surgery takes time, patience and commitment. You will often start noticing rapid improvement in mobility, comfort and ability to perform normal daily actives around 4-12 weeks. You will, how ever, continue to improve following your surgery up to and beyond 12 months.