Have a new knee or hip? How to get back to normal

apmr-knee-replace-t86535480About 7 million Americans have new hips or knees, according to research presented at a recent American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons conference.

Five percent of people over 50 have replaced a knee, and more than two percent have received a new hip. The main reasons: obesity, which stresses the body’s joints, and arthritis. A Physical Therapist (PT) can help ensure that your operation will be successful by treating you before and after surgery.

When it comes to knee replacement, your PT will offer advice on how to prepare your home, such as removing loose rugs or positioning a chair so you can sit instead of squat to get something out of a low cabinet.

After the surgery, while you’re still in the hospital, your PT can show you how to walk with crutches or a walker; teach you how to safely get in and out of your bed and a chair; and help you with flexibility and strengthening exercises.

As you recover, your PT can help you return to your usual activities quickly by teaching you range-of-motion exercises; how to strengthen the muscles in your thigh and lower leg so you can stop using a cane; and how to make quick stops and starts without falling down.

If you need a hip replacement, a PT can help you prepare and recover. Before surgery, your PT can teach you flexibility and strengthening exercises for your legs and how to use a walker or crutches. After surgery, he or she will help you safely get out of bed and sit; walk and climb stairs; move your new hip and leg; and strengthen your muscles to improve your ability to walk and stand independently. 

For more information on how physical therapy can help with knee and hip replacement, contact us here.

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