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Total Knee Replacement Activity Guidelines

Weight-bearing status:____________________________

Continue to use the following guidelines until your doctor tells you otherwise.


  • Avoid placing pillows under your operative knee.
  • Elevate leg by placing pillows under your entire leg and foot to reduce swelling.


  • Avoid sitting for long periods of time (more than 30 to 60 minutes) in one position. Get up and move around.


  • Continue to use your walker, crutches, or cane until your doctor tells you otherwise.
  • Wear well-fitting shoes with non-skid soles.
  • Take short, frequent walks.
  • Be careful on uneven ground or wet surfaces.
  • Maintain your weight-bearing status as instructed until your doctor or therapist tells you otherwise.
  • Avoid pivoting or twisting on the operated leg.


  • You may use a walk-in shower. Otherwise, take sponge baths or purchase a tub bench.


  • Continue to perform your exercises until your doctor or therapist tells you otherwise.


  • Sit down when passing clothing over your feet.  

Household chores

  • Avoid kneeling or squatting.
  • Use a rolling cart to transport items (see picture at right).  

Riding in a car

  • DO NOT drive until your doctor says
    you may.
  • Avoid long car rides (more than 30 to 60 minutes). Stop, get out, and walk around before continuing your car trip.

Sexual relations

  • Do not feel that you have to avoid sexual relations. Discuss this with your doctor or therapist.

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Supplemental content provided by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions. All rights reserved.

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Medical information made available on is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely entirely on this information for your health care needs. Ask your own doctor or health care provider any specific medical questions that you have. Further, is not a tool to be used in the case of an emergency. If an emergency arises, you should seek appropriate emergency medical services.

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