Total Joint Replacement

Recovering from a total joint replacement is a breeze with Mid-County Physical Therapy!

In the United States, due mainly to an aging population and scientific advances, total joint replacements are becoming increasingly common and routine. However, total joint replacement is not a procedure to take lightly, and medical professionals should attempt every non-surgical alternative within reason before replacement is performed.

Total joint replacements are primarily successful because of what comes after the surgery itself. Extensive physical therapy that emphasizes movement and strength in the patient is the key to maintaining good health in the surgically replaced area.

Mid-County Physical Therapy is the ideal place to recover from a total joint replacement because we take an individualized approach to our patients. Mid-County Physical Therapy has a solution for you regardless of the replaced joint that requires recovery. Read on for more information regarding total joint replacement and our processes.

What Is Total Joint Replacement?

A total joint replacement might be necessary when arthritis or other damage is inflicted upon a person’s joint. If you feel severe pain and stiffness in your joints, it may be time to consider serious treatment. For decades, surgeons performed most joint replacements on people over 55 years old, but recent procedural and surgical techniques have allowed younger people to receive total joint replacements.

Total joint replacements are conceptually simple to understand. As the name would suggest, a surgeon removes the damaged joint and replaces it with a sturdier material to stabilize the area and relieve discomfort. Regardless of whether you are going to get a total shoulder replacement or a total knee replacement, four material sets are seen as the industry standard:

  • Metal on plastic
  • Ceramic on plastic
  • Ceramic on ceramic
  • Metal on metal

Each material combination that can replace damaged joints offers pros and cons to consider before surgery. The length of time each material can hold up, and the potential health concerns each of them bear should be discussed with a medical professional so that you are entirely comfortable with the procedure to come.

A person bends their heavily wrapped shoulder

How to Recover from Total Joint Replacement

The physical therapy process for a total joint replacement begins before any surgery. In that way, the recovery process does not take on a physical therapy vs. surgery flair. Physical therapy and surgery are linked closely, and preparing for each with attention will result in a more straightforward recovery process.

Doctors will likely ask patients to manage their weight and stop activities such as smoking before their surgery is scheduled. In addition, it is recommended that patients start performing the exercises they will need to do in recovery before surgery. Taking some of these steps ahead of time will make the recovery process more manageable.

After surgery, patients will be required to stay at the hospital as they regain their vitality. Though total joint replacements are becoming more common, they are still significant surgeries that knock patients down for a few days. After a few days, however, patients should be ready to perform some light exercises.

Once more structured post-op rehabilitation and physical therapy sessions begin for the recovering patient, some basic exercises and motion work can begin. At first, the patient will be tasked with daily activities such as walking with good posture and walking up and down steps. These sessions can be relatively short as the patient slowly reestablishes their muscle memory and strength. However, the frequency and intensity of each activity can ramp up as the patient advances further into the recovery phase.

No one way can rehabilitate every patient. Every total joint replacement comes with its own trials, and each patient will need individualized care to ensure the best recovery. For example, different types of shoulder replacements will require different solutions, and each patient of those replacements will require care specific to their needs and weaknesses.  

Regain Your Strength at Mid-County Physical Therapy

Mid-County Physical Therapy can help you regain your strength after total joint replacement. The broad spectrum of causes and recovery needs associated with joint replacements make it so that each patient must be treated individually, and we can provide that brand of care.

Our physical therapy resources and techniques will satisfy you or your loved one as they recover from total joint replacement. Give us a call today to learn more about what we offer.


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