After Knee Replacement: Controlling Swelling

After Knee Replacement: Controlling Swelling

Swelling is common after total knee replacement. It may be worse after exercise. To help control swelling, follow the steps below.

Woman sitting on chair with her foot raised on pillows

Ice Your Knee

Wrap an ice pack or bag of frozen peas in a thin cloth, then place it on your knee. Don’t place ice directly on the skin. Don’t use ice for more than 20 minutes at a time. If you have an ice machine, use it as directed.

Elevate Your Leg

Elevate your leg above your heart. Ask your healthcare provider about safe positions to do this.

Person flexing foot
Ankle pumps help reduce swelling and prevent blood clots.

Do Ankle Pumps

Continue doing ankle pumps. They help reduce swelling, improve circulation, and prevent blood clots. Point, then flex both feet slowly. Repeat this 10–30 times each hour.