What You Can do Now to Prepare for Your Postponed Knee Replacement

Orthopaedic & Spine Center
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Dr. John BurrowJohn D. Burrow, DO

I’m hearing a lot of pent up frustration from my patients about having their knee replacement surgeries postponed due to the Coronavirus pandemic.  I hear things like, “They just don’t know how much pain I’m in” or “I can barely walk, how much longer do I have to wait?” or “I can’t work, cause I can’t go up and down a ladder anymore!  If I can’t work, I don’t eat!”  I get it, this waiting game for a hospital procedure seems difficult, because your planned knee replacement surgery is important to you and your family.

Let’s talk about what you can do to get this waiting period to work in your favor.  When we discussed your surgery, I mentioned doing certain things, like pre-surgery exercise (pre-habbing), eating right, and quitting smoking. Some of my patients listen to this advice and follow my instructions before surgery. Some don’t. Whatever category you fall into, you now have time to get more fit, conditioned and healthy before having your knee replacement.

Have you done the strengthening exercises pictured in the pre-surgical packet that we gave you when you scheduled your knee replacement surgery? If so, congratulations, you’re on the road to a better recovery!  If not, get that packet of information out and get moving. Do those exercises faithfully, and include another form of exercise every day, like walking or biking, and don’t forget to stretch before you exercise.

If you need to do so, lose some weight before your surgery.  Carrying excess weight is hard on your knees before AND after knee replacement surgery. Getting some of that aforementioned exercise can help with weight loss, but you can lose weight even if you’re pretty much chair bound.  It all has to do with your food intake and simple math. We all have a BMR – Basal Metabolic Rate – which predicates how many calories a day we need to keep our body functioning well at rest. If you consume less calories and burn more, you’ll lose weight.  You can easily calculate your BMR on-line and add your daily activity level, which will then show you what your calorie intake needs to be to lose weight.

Take a few simple steps to get ready for your knee replacement surgery.  It may seem hard at first, but I know you’ll be happy that you did so after your surgery.


Make an appointment with Dr. Burrow or another OSC provider by clicking the “Request Appointment” button below or by calling (757) 596-1900.