For those being discharged home after a total hip or knee replacement, the questions and uncertainties are many. Having had a whole team of doctors, nurses, and therapists at your disposal for days now, you may wonder how you and your loved one will manage safely while at home. Whether you are the patient or their caretaker, having an extra set of hands to help with daily tasks is essential in order to stay safe and progress well through recovery.

How Can Home-Care Help Those Recovering at Home From a Total Hip or Knee Replacement?

A caregiver leaning over to speak with a senior man in a wheelchair.

Mobility

After a hip or knee replacement, there are physical restrictions imposed to prevent strain or over-extension of the operated joint. Under the guidance of a physical therapist, these exercises were performed several times a day during the hospitalization. Now at home, it is important that you continue doing these exercises daily to prevent the development of blood clots and to maintain the mobility and strength of the newly operated hip or knee. An at-home caregiver can assist you or your loved one with performing these daily exercises, providing a safer environment under their supervision.

Medication

After surgery, it is likely that there will be new prescriptions, perhaps a blood-thinning medication or antibiotic to prevent post-op infection. Incorporating these new medicines into an existing medication regime may be difficult to remember at times. An at-home caregiver can help to organize the pillbox and give needed reminders on when to take these pills.

Transportation

For at least 6 weeks following surgery, the patient will not be able to drive a vehicle due to physical restrictions or narcotic pain medications. Getting to medical appointments, shopping for groceries or simply keeping social appointments may be impossible without someone to drive. The inability to get out of the house daily can be stiffing.  Having an at-home caregiver at your disposal to drive you or your loved one as needed will give you the freedom that you are accustomed to. 

Why is excellent home care so important following a knee or hip surgery?

Readmission to the hospital after a total knee or hip replacement is, unfortunately, a risk. According to Forbes, as many as 34 in 1,000 patients readmit following these surgeries. This could be related to an injury sustained while in the home or because of failure to take medications as prescribed. Any hospitalization increases the risk of contracting a hospital-acquired infection or delaying physical rehabilitation, so taking the necessary steps to prevent this is imperative.  

Would you like to know how our caring and skilled caregivers at Family Tree In-Home Care can assist you in keeping your loved one safe at home following a knee or hip surgery? Contact us about the services our caregivers offer such as bathing, medication reminders, cooking, light housekeeping, and transportation.