After knee replacement surgery, you will be taken to the intensive care unit or recovery room. In a few hours, you will go to your hospital room. You may see a metal triangle called a trapeze over your bed. You can use this to help move yourself around in bed. You will be very tired and will want to rest. Your nurse may also help turn you as you rest.
You will probably still have a tube that drains urine from your bladder (urinary catheter), and you will be getting fluids into your vein through an IV tube. You may also have a tube called a drain near the cut (incision) in your knee.
You may not feel hungry. You may feel sick to your stomach or constipated for a couple of days. This is common. Your nurse may give you stool softeners or laxatives to help with constipation.
You may have stockings that put pressure on your legs to prevent blood clots. Your nurse will also give you medicine and exercise instructions to help prevent clots.
Most people get out of bed with help on the day of surgery or the next day. You may spend 2 to 7 days in the hospital after your surgery.
This care sheet gives you a general idea about how your recovery will begin in the hospital. Each person has a different experience and recovers at a different pace.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd
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Current as of: March 21, 2017
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& David Bardana, MD, FRCSC - Orthopedic Surgery, Sports Medicine
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