Knee immediately after major surgery
Knee surgery is not something to be taken lightly. It is often the last choice for an injury. But, when surgery is necessary, and has been performed to correct a problem, it is imperative to take care of the joint after surgery. One of the most critical symptoms that will need attention is swelling. Keeping the swelling down will speed healing and assist in rehabilitation.
Treatment for swelling will begin in the recovery room. Your leg will be elevated above the level of your heart, and compresses will be placed on it. You will likely have a pressure stocking from ankle to hip. Ice will not be used so much at this stage as elevation and pressure.
At Home Treatments
The key to keeping swelling down can be summed up with the acronym ICE. This stands for Ice, Compress and Elevate. When you are sent home from the hospital or the doctor's office, you will need to follow these steps constantly until your follow up with the doctor. By following these simple steps, you can minimise the swelling to your knee.
There will be many times after your surgery that your knee will swell, due to stress or strain. If you feel your knee swelling, immediately get off it and begin the ICE steps. If the swelling gets worse, or persists for more than 24 hours, it will be necessary to call your doctor.