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What is the Best Form of Physiotherapy after Knee Replacement

In less than two decades, the number of knee replacement surgeries (specifically, total knee arthroplasties) in Australia has more than doubled

We perform more than 50,000 of these surgeries per year. This can put a major strain on national healthcare spending. One cost-saving opportunity is to shift as much of the physiotherapy to outpatient settings as possible. Outpatient physiotherapy achieves results on par with inpatient, but costs much less. Inpatient physiotherapy is ideal for patients who need significant assistance with daily living tasks that they cannot get at home. Outpatient physiotherapy, on the other hand, is ideal for people who can live comfortably at home and who can manage to travel to and from the office for appointments.

Leaving no stone unturned for finding cost-saving opportunities in healthcare, the new question arising is whether knee replacement patients need supervised rehab at all.(2) If patients could manage their own therapeutic exercise program with only normal, follow-up, outpatient doctor visits, the healthcare system could save nearly one thousand dollars per surgery. To explore this question, Jason Falfey and colleagues crafted a study evaluating the Medicare records of 5,697 patients with knee replacements.(2) They tracked the number of outpatient, supervised exercise sessions patients received. They also tracked how much each patient improved independence with activities of daily living (ADLs) such as walking, bathing, toileting, etc. Researchers concluded that the more physiotherapy visits patients received, the greater their improvement in ADLs.  

  • 0-5 Physiotherapy Visits: baseline ADL comparison
  • 6-9 Physiotherapy Visits: 25% greater ADL improvement
  • 10-13 Physiotherapy Visits: 40% greater ADL improvement
  • 14+ Physiotherapy Visits: 50% greater ADL improvement

It turns out that physiotherapy is an important part of knee replacement recovery. The more, the better.

Advanced Physiotherapy has the Alter G, the most advanced equipment in unweighted gait training. What’s more, we know knees. With over 7,000 knees treated, Advanced Physiotherapy has a specialized lower-limb team of physiotherapists. Our patients can use our gym between appointments at no additional charge. When it comes to knee, ankle, and hip pain, remember Advanced Physiotherapy for truly advanced care.


  1. Australian Orthopaedic Association. Australian Orthopaedic Association National Joint Replacement Registry (AOANJRR). Hip, Knee & Shoulder Arthroplasty. Table ST30. Adelaide: AOA. 
  2. Falvey JR, Bade MJ, Forster JE, Burke RE, Jennings JM, Nuccio E, Stevens-Lapsley JE. Home-Health-Care Physical Therapy Improves Early Functional Recovery of Medicare Beneficiaries After Total Knee Arthroplasty. JBJS. 2018 Oct 17;100(20):1728-34.



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