Efficiency of immediate postoperative inpatient physical therapy following total knee arthroplasty: an RCT

BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2006 Aug 31;7:71. doi: 10.1186/1471-2474-7-71.


Background: The main goal of physical therapy treatment (PT) in the clinical stage following total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is to prepare patients for discharge from the hospital as soon as possible after their operation. Although aggressive rehabilitation is believed to be important, evidence of effects of different exercise programmes following TKA is limited. This led to the question whether the intensity of PT (once versus twice daily) following TKA affects short-term recovery, measured as range of motion.

Methods: A randomised controlled trial compared an exercise regimen of two sessions per day with a similar programme administered once daily. Primary outcome measure was ROM.

Results: At the time of hospital discharge, there was no difference between the experimental and control groups in range of motion.

Conclusion: This study shows that in our setting twice daily PT sessions do not produce different results as daily PT sessions. It may be questioned whether multiple daily therapy sessions are needed as an in-hospital PT regimen in OA total knee patients.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Appointments and Schedules
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee / rehabilitation*
  • Critical Pathways
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Inpatients
  • Length of Stay
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / surgery*
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Physical Therapy Modalities*
  • Postoperative Care / methods*
  • Range of Motion, Articular
  • Treatment Outcome