Techniques Used In Joint Replacement Rehabilitation

by Churchill Orthopedic Rehabilitation Best Physical Therapy in Teaneck NJ

Physical therapists are trained experts in identifying weaknesses of the body and surgical methods and medication interventions after surgery. Most importantly, physiotherapists can tailor their works to improve the overall well-being of a patient with a joint replacement and ensure long-term success.

Joint replacement rehabilitation from a physiotherapist grants the following benefits:

  • Build up power in the joint and surrounding muscles.
  • Restore normal function to the joint.
  • Ease swelling and pain.
  • Guide the patient back to regular activities.
  • Help with circulation, so the individual does not have difficulties with blood clots.

To reach these goals, physiotherapists use the following methods while focusing on areas of concentration.

Stretches of Joints and Muscles

Stretching is essential in maintaining good range of motion for flexibility of muscles and joints. If the patient has tight muscles or stiff joints, activities such as reaching overhead or climbing stairs can be seriously affected. With a program of stretching, these activities can be preserved. Following an injury or surgery, scar tissue forms and tissue contracts. For this reason stretching is extremely important.

Physical therapists use exercises to restore the body to optimal health. Strength training helps the individual to build muscles surrounding the replacement. The goal is to increase strength and improve the range of motion of the joint. In recent years, physical therapists have put more emphasis on strengthening, since the body’s core is its support. Strengthening muscles at the pelvis and in the back improves balance and increases stability, which helps the successful recovery from hip or knee replacement.

Heat and Ice Application

Ice and heat is another technique useful in cooling off and warming up the muscles. Additionally, these methods can decrease swelling and stimulate blood flow, essential to the healing process.


Ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to stimulate the deep tissues in the body, which promotes increased blood flow to these tissues.

Electrical stimulation

This is a therapy that carries an electrical current to the affected area. Nerve conduction surrounding the region is changed, which can, in turn, shift muscle contractility. Blood movement to these muscles is also improved with electrical stimulation. Individuals often experience less pain after electrical stimulation treatment.

Depending on the operation and the individual, particular treatments will be used. For example, patients who undergo knee replacement surgery may need to apply cold packs, wear support stockings, and elevate the leg for up to three months after the replacement to relieve swelling. Patients are encouraged to perform strengthening exercises for the legs, range-of-motion workouts specific to the knee, and balance training. For a person undergoing hip replacement, exercises like ankle pumps and activities to release and contract muscles in the legs and buttocks may be prescribed. In some cases, a physical therapist will work with other occupational therapists to ensure a successful recovery.

Physical therapists are devoted to helping their patients gain back function so that the individual can start enjoying a pain-free life again. These are some of the techniques used by physical therapists for joint replacement rehabilitation. Visit the professionals at Churchill Orthopedic Rehabilitation for a comprehensive evaluation and individualized treatment.

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Created on Nov 30th 2017 11:46. Viewed 338 times.


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