Top 5 Mistakes After Knee Replacement Surgery

top 5 mistakes after knee replacement

Knee replacement surgery is a major medical procedure that involves removing the damaged or diseased parts of the knee joint and replacing them with artificial components. People who have severe knee discomfort or have lost mobility owing to illnesses such as osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis are usually recommended for surgery.

While knee replacement surgery can provide significant relief from knee pain and improve quality of life, it is important to note that the success of the procedure largely depends on how well the patient follows post-surgical care instructions. Unfortunately, many patients make common mistakes after knee replacement surgery that can hinder their recovery and even cause complications.

In this blog post, we will discuss the top 5 mistakes after knee replacement surgery that patients should avoid. 

1. Not Following the Rehabilitation Plan

Rehabilitation after knee replacement surgery is critical for a successful outcome. A comprehensive rehabilitation plan typically includes exercises to improve flexibility and strength, as well as walking and other activities to improve mobility. However, many patients make the mistake of not following the rehabilitation plan or not completing it as prescribed. They have the misconception that they should not walk after a knee replacement as they fear of damaging the knee implants.

This can lead to a slower recovery and may even result in the need for additional surgeries. Patients should work closely with their physical therapist and follow their prescribed exercises and activities to ensure a successful recovery.

2. Walking program example:

  • Week 4 post-surgery: walk for 5 minutes twice a day.
  • Week 5 post-surgery: walk for 6 minutes twice day.
  • Week 6 post-surgery: walk for 8 minutes twice a day.
  • Week 7 after surgery: walk for 10 minutes twice a day.

3. Ignoring Pain and Discomfort

While it is normal to experience some pain and discomfort after knee replacement surgery, patients should not ignore these symptoms. Pain and discomfort can be a sign of an infection, blood clot, or other complications. Patients should immediately notify their healthcare provider if they experience any unusual symptoms, including fever, swelling, redness, or warmth in the affected leg. Early detection of signs of joint infection and blood clots can make treatment more effective. 

4. Poor Stress Management

Maintaining a healthy weight is important for overall health and well-being, but it is especially important for patients who have undergone knee replacement surgery. Excess weight places additional stress on the knee joint and can slow down the healing process. Chronic stress suppresses the immune system, making it difficult for the body to fight illnesses and heal properly. This raises the possibility of post-operative problems such as wound infections or delayed healing. Patients should work with their nutritionist to develop a healthy eating plan and exercise program to maintain a healthy weight. 

5. Returning to Activities too Quickly

While it is important to resume activities and exercise after knee replacement surgery, it is equally important to do so gradually and under the guidance of a healthcare provider. Patients should avoid activities that put too much stress on the knee joint, such as running, jumping, or high-impact sports, until their healthcare provider gives them the green light. Exercise, like medication, demands an adequate dose. Overuse injuries such as tendinitis and bursitis can result from excessive exercise, but insufficient activity can induce muscular atrophy and deconditioning.

It is normal for people to be less active before surgery and more active afterwards. Your physical therapist can help you establish the proper amount of post-surgical activity and advise you on the essential rest days between sessions to ensure a complete recovery.

6. Not Taking Medication as Prescribed

Following knee replacement surgery, patients are often prescribed medication to manage pain and prevent complications. However, many patients make the mistake of not taking their medication as prescribed. This can lead to increased pain and discomfort, as well as complications such as blood clots. 

Patients should carefully follow their healthcare provider’s instructions for taking medication, including the dosage and frequency. They should also notify their healthcare provider of any side effects or concerns.


In conclusion, knee replacement surgery can provide significant relief from knee pain and improve quality of life. However, it is important for patients to follow post-surgical care instructions to ensure a successful outcome. Patients should avoid the common top 5 mistakes after knee replacement discussed in this blog post, including not following the rehabilitation plan, ignoring pain or discomfort, not maintaining a healthy weight, returning to activities too quickly, and not taking medication as prescribed. By avoiding these mistakes, patients can improve their chances of a successful recovery and enjoy the full benefits of knee replacement surgery.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *