Open Accessibility Menu

Knee Replacement Recovery Tips

Use the menu below to uncover recovery tips.

Pain After Total Knee Replacement

  • You will experience some postsurgical pain in the area that has been operated on after your knee replacement.
  • There will be some discomfort in the knee up to around 6 weeks following the surgery and in some patients, this may even persist up to 3 months following the surgery.
  • You will use a walker until your therapy team transitions you to a cane.

How Much Should I Be Walking After a Knee Replacement?

  • Following a knee replacement, you may walk freely.
  • Walking is an excellent exercise to help promote recovery and healing in the knee.
  • Use a stationary bike or an elliptical trainer with walking to promote recovery.

Knee Replacement Recovery Exercises

  • Focus primarily on the exercises that your orthopedic team assigns you to do.
  • When you feel comfortable doing so, use a stationary bike or an elliptical trainer to assist in developing quadriceps strength.
  • Ice and elevate extremity 4-5 times a day for 20-30 minutes at a time to reduce pain and swelling.
  • Moving the joint with walking and exercise can alleviate stiffness and lessen pain.
  • Narcotic pain medicine as prescribed by your provider will assist with pain in the first few weeks after surgery.

Knee Replacement Exercises to Avoid

  • Don't do too much too quickly. Work your way up to more intense exercises gradually.
  • Avoid resisted knee extensions and resisted squats too early in your recovery process.
  • Don’t twist on your knee. Make turns slowly, stepping with small movements to turn.

What Not to Do After a Knee Replacement?

  • Do not remove dressing too early.
  • Try not to do too much too quickly.
  • Avoid strenuous exercise or sporting activities too early.
Related Providers