I had a similar procedure 6 weeks ago, and was given a sheet of exercises at discharge. I have also been doing PT, which I think has been a huge help. Here's some links to the exercises that they have had me doing - starting with earlier, more basic exercises - ankle pumps
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kVt4fgia1jc&feature=relmfuheel slides
(putting a plastic bag over your foot helps your foot slide easier)quad contraction
The most important thing on this one is to try to straighten your knee as much as possible during this exercise, and really try to push the back of your knee down into the towel. The towel gives you the stimulus against your knee to do this - but you can do it without the towel too.straight knee lift
- I was told to hold for 10 seconds at the top of the lift, which is not shown in the videolunges on step
- I couldn't find a great video of this one, but the video I am linking you to at least shows you the motion. In this video, the guy is doing them on the floor, very quickly, which you don't want to do. I was instructed to do them slowly, placing the foot from my surgical leg onto to a step and slowly lunging forward. (Now that my range of motion has increased, I am lunging to the 2nd step - allows for a better bend) Use your hands on the step if needed. Lunge into the "bad knee" slowly, and slowly pump at the end of your range of motion. Do about 30. This is the one that I found most helpful to loosen up the front of my knee and increase my range of motion during flexion. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3BYD0bXXIwcalf raises/stretches
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wGTZyp1sbuw&feature=relmfuheel walk
- the worst part for me was trying to straighten my leg. Walking across the room on my heels was the best of the exercises to help loosen up the back part of my knee. I will do these any time during the day when I feel my knee stiffening up and wanting to stay bent.walking backwards on a treadmill
- this helped a lot with straightening too. You can go as slow as you want, (.5 to 1.0) and it's fine to hold on. The important part here, which is not shown that great in this video, is to be sure to exaggerate the toe to heel motion and have a long stride. When you first put your foot down, reach right back with your toe and role fully to the heel, flexing the toe up towards your head at the end.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hNAMw5JnHS8&feature=relatedwall sits
(if you do these against a door, you can tip to the side a little and use the door jam to help straighten when you're done)unweighted squats
- I couldn't find a great video of this. This video shows the guy squatting down to 90 degrees - I started only going maybe 45 degrees or less - just until I started feeling pain. Also, in this video, the band is connected to something on the floor - you will want to use a resistance band and loop it around a bannister, or if you can find something overhead, that's even better to start (I went to the gym and looped it overhead at first - on a piece of equipment)step ups
- you can do these as shown in this video, or laterally - instead of facing the step, you turn your body 90 degrees so that instead of facing the step, your hip faces the step. These can be done on a regular step, and you can use a railing if needed. Also, if you are not able to lower your foot flat foot down, once you raise up, point your toe to the floor, and lower down with weight on your toe:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_RaJyG61RA
A couple of very helpful things that my PT told me -
- concentrate your work at the end of your range of motion, where applicable
- respect pain - a little pain is OK, but not too much - basically, you have to find the balance between being a baby and pushing too hard
- ice for about 20 minutes after exercising
- if you are still limping, a couple of things that helped me was to be sure to land with your heel, roll to your toe, extend you hip bakwards, and lift your leg high enough so you don't come close to dragging your toe.
- it's a good idea to do these on both sides
- Flexibility is important - Be sure to stretch - hamstrings, quads, hip flexors, calves - you can search on you tube if you don't know how to do these.
- Balance is also a very important component - to strengthen the small stabilizer muscles- again, you can youtube balance exercises.
- Hamstring, glute and quad strength are all important, as is core strength. Once you are doing good with the these exercises, working on strength in these areas will be helpful....youtube again!
Hope this helps. There are more, but this should get you started. From what I have seen, a lot of the exercises that I am being given parallel those for knee replacement, so you can do some searches on that if you need more.