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Even though we can get you home quicker with today’s advances, this is still a BIG surgery. It takes time to recover from. Sometimes when people feel “recovered” already, their body hasn’t completely recovered from surgery yet. Daily walking is important, increasing the number of blocks as your pain level sees fit, but I recommend against any vigorous activities such as running, jumping, biking, climbing on ladders etc for at least 6 weeks after surgery. Stick to walking and normal day-to-day activities and give your body time to heal.

  • Make sure to schedule your outpatient physical therapy no later than 14-17 days after surgery.
    • This should have been done before surgery
  • Sit up SLOWLY! It is normal to be lightheaded the few days after surgery. Go from laying down, to sitting at the side of the bed, then when you are ready, go from sitting to standing slowly.
  • Most of our patients will have Home Physical Therapy for the first 10-14 days after surgery
  • You should continue to do home exercises that are prescribed to you by your therapist
  • Work on motion!
    • Your goal is to achieve 0 degrees of extension (i.e. “fully straight”) and 100 degrees of flexion (i.e. “bending”) by 3 weeks after surgery.
    • Write your range of motion numbers down after each PT session on the “TKA Range of Motion Graph” sheet (this is located at the back of this handout)
    • ***Make sure to bring this “TKA Range of Motion Graph” to your first office visit with Dr. Bremjit! He will ask to see it!
  • Ask your physical therapist at every visit what your range of motion is.
  • MOTION IS LOTION! The more you move your joint or are up and about walking, the better it will feel in the long run
  • Don’t worry about “strengthening” or building muscle. You will have plenty of time to regain this. The most important thing is motion. As your swelling subsides and pain decreases, you will begin to work on strengthening (usually after the first 6 weeks).
  • With regards to your knee range of motion, remember – you never get a second chance at this first 6 weeks after surgery!


  • ACE wrap can be removed 1-2 days after surgery and then converted to a thigh high compression stocking (this may have already been done in the hospital)
  • Do not remove the beige dressing (Aquacel) until 7-10 days after surgery
  • You may shower starting 48 hours after surgery. Your Aquacel dressing is waterproof unless indicated otherwise. This is a special dressing that has antimicrobial properties and provides an optimal environment for wound healing. If you have a Purple Dressing with a canister attached (Prevena), this is because you have risk factors for infection that we are trying to provide extra protection against - this is NOT waterproof and you should sponge bath for the first 7 days.
  • Some drainage/oozing of blood is NORMAL on your dressing. If your dressing becomes completely saturated, please remove it and apply a dry dressing directly on to the skin (simple gauze and tape). You can put this in between the compression hose and skin if you prefer not to use tape. Gauze and tape is NOT waterproof, so should be removed for showering. Please call or message us if there is any confusion regarding this
  • If your dressing should come off or be removed for any reason, please place a clean dry dressing over it. Don’t stress out! You have a reinforced skin closure underneath. However, please do let the office know if you are draining any fluid or blood after the 5-7 days after surgery
  • At two weeks after surgery, you can leave the incision open to air and you can shower. No bathing, pools, hot-tubs, or standing water for 4-6 weeks after surgery.
  • DO NOT clean the wound with alcohol, Neosporin, betadine, hydrogen peroxide, or any materials unless instructed to do so by Dr. Bremjit or his staff

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4011 Talbot Road S,
Ste 300,
Renton, WA 98055

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Proliance Surgeons First Hill Orthopedics

515 Minor Avenue,
Suite 200,
Seattle, WA 98104

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