About Joint Replacement

When will I be able to go back to a normal daily routine?

This is a decision only you and your surgeon can make. Every patient’s experience is different.

However, there are some general guidelines your doctor may give you:

  • You'll practice stair — climbing in the hospital and should be able to do this by the time you leave
  • You should have no restrictions on leaving your home as long as your safety and comfort are assured. Just don't tire yourself out; a good balance of exercise, rest, and relaxation is best for helping your body heal and gain strength
  • When to resume driving a car, going to work, and/or participating in sports activities are all highly individualized decisions. Be sure to follow your doctor's or orthopaedic surgeon's advice and recommendations

After Surgery — Limitations

For approximately 12 weeks after surgery certain limitations are placed on your activities. When fully recovered, most patients can return to work. However, some types of work may not be advisable for individuals with a joint replacement. These types of work include:

  • Construction work
  • Certain types of carpentry
  • Occupations that involve repeated high climbing

Athletic activities that place excessive stress on the joint replacement will need to be avoided. Examples of these activities include:

  • Skiing (snow or water)
  • Basketball
  • Baseball
  • Contact sports
  • Running
  • Frequent jumping

Realistic Expectations

Physical Activities
After joint replacement, acceptable physical activities should:

  • Not cause pain — including pain felt later
  • Not jar the joint — running and jumping should be avoided
  • Not place the joint in the extremes of its range of motion
  • Be pleasurable

Longevity of Joint Replacement
It is impossible to predict in individual cases how long a joint replacement will last. Many factors determine the outcome including:

  • Age
  • Weight
  • Activity level
  • Bone strength