Total Knee Replacement

Shelley Milner – Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Tuscaloosa

Shelley Milner is Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Tuscaloosa

Say hello to Shelley Milner, Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Tuscaloosa!  

Shelley is used to being on the go with her family and friends so when she had a total knee replacement, it was important to her to recover quickly. She chose Encore Rehabilitation-Tuscaloosa to be her rehab provider because the clinic was close and convenient.

Happily, Shelley is on the go again doing the things she loves: visiting amusement parks, spending time with outdoors with her grandkids, exploring haunted houses, taking day trips, and so much more!

Congratulations, Shelley! We wish you many more adventures!

Shelley Milner is Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Tuscaloosa

Encore Rehabilitation-Tuscaloosa
6561 Highway 69, Suite A
Tuscaloosa, Alabama 35405
Find Encore Rehabilitation-Tuscaloosa on Facebook by clicking here

Patty Headley -“I looked forward to coming each day”

Patty Headley is Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Clanton! #encorerehab

Ms. Patty Headley recently had knee replacement surgery. She chose Encore Rehabilitation-Clanton to be her rehab provider.  Ms. Patty says, “I liked the Encore Rehab workers and the care I got. I looked forward to coming each day.”

The rehab staff enjoyed having Ms. Patty, too! Her Physical Therapist, Taylor Phillips, says, “Ms. Patty was a joy to have in therapy. At 82, she is a model patient and stayed very positive throughout her rehab.”

Congratulations to Ms. Patty for being selected Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Clanton! We wish you the best!

Encore Rehabilitation-Clanton
674 Ollie Avenue
Clanton, Alabama 35045
Find Encore Rehabilitation-Clanton on Facebook by clicking here

“I would recommend Encore Rehabilitation” – Cathy Shands McGee

Madison Taylor – Athlete of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation Clanton

Emilio Sanchez- Encore “goes above and beyond with service and care”

Emilio Sanchez is Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Decatur

Emilio Sanchez has been selected Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Decatur!

After having double knee replacements, Emilio came to Encore for physical therapy because of the outstanding therapists and quality treatment. He says, “I have received physical therapy with Encore Rehabilitation in the past with excellent care. Encore goes above and beyond with service and care.” 

Thank you, Emilio, for choosing Encore Rehabilitation again! Congratulations on being recognized as Patient of the Month!

Encore Rehabilitation-Decatur
2506 Danville Road
Decatur, Alabama 35603
Find Encore Rehabilitation-Decatur  on Facebook by clicking here

Justin Hargett, DPT, New Clinic Director for Encore Rehabilitation-Decatur 

Dry Needling: What is it and How does it work?


Betty Crowley-Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Fayette

Encore Rehabilitation Therapist Marla Kizzire posing with Betty Crowley, Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Fayette

Encore Rehabilitation Therapist Marla Kizzire posing with Betty Crowley, Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Fayette

We are happy to present Betty Crowley as Patient of the Month for Encore Rehabilitation-Fayette!

After a total knee replacement, Betty choose Encore Rehabilitation. Why? She says, “I have had several other family members in addition to myself that have used this great Encore Rehab office. I enjoy working with the staff. I recommend this facility for all your therapy needs.

Thank you, Betty, for choosing Encore Rehabilitation-Fayette to be your rehab provider! 

Encore Rehabilitation-Fayette
1793 North Temple Avenue
Fayette, Alabama 35555
Find Encore Rehabilitation-Fayette on Facebook by clicking here

Helen Schumacher- “Wonderful Therapy”

4 Encore Rehabilitation Therapists and one Patient smiling and posing for a photo

Helen Schumacher, center, with the Physical Therapy Staff of Encore Rehabilitation-Foley

When it was time for rehab for her second knee replacement, Helen Schumacher knew exactly where she wanted to go-Encore Rehabilitation-Foley!

Helen says, “This is my second knee replacement therapy with Encore. I came to Encore for the wonderful therapists who are cheerful and give me wonderful therapy so I can resume my normal activities, which I am doing. They will work with you and are very patient and caring. The office staff are helpful and pleasant. I am doing very well since I started therapy.”

Thank you, Helen, for choosing Encore–again!

Encore Rehabilitation-Foley
171 N. McKenzie Street
Foley, Alabama 36535
Find Encore Rehabilitation-Foley on Facebook by clicking here

Debra Bacon- Very Pleased with Encore Rehabilitation-Foley

Lady standing, posing for a photo Debra Bacon recently had a total knee replacement. Several people highly recommended Encore Rehabilitation-Foley and so Debra chose Encore for her rehab provider. 

Debra says, “Everyone I worked with was very kind and encouraging. They pushed me when needed but always in a gentle manner. They always asked me how I felt rehab was going and determined what the next step would be for me. I was very pleased with the results and always felt comfortable.”

Thank you, Debra, for choosing Encore!

Encore Rehabilitation-Foley
1711 N. McKenzie Street
Foley, Alabama 36535
Find Encore Rehabilitation-Foley on Facebook by clicking here

Physical Therapy instead of Surgery

Encore Sports Medicine Symposium – Continuing Education – Orange Beach, Alabama, July 13-15, 2018


“Encore has been extra good with me!”

Sara Bell ColumbianaRevised

“I had knee replacement surgery in July and then I had knee manipulation six weeks later,” says Sara Bell of Wilsonville, Alabama. Sara’s doctor recommended Encore Rehabilitation – Columbiana for her physical therapy. She is now very happy to report, “Now I can walk without my cane. Encore therapy has been extra good with me. Thank you.”

Thank you, Sara! Happy National Physical Therapy Month!

Fayette Encore Patient of the Month, Sherman Lee.

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We would like to recognize our Fayette Encore Patient of the Month, Sherman Lee. Sherman is a native of Fayette, AL and has been coming to our clinic to receive physical therapy after his total knee replacement. He has been receiving therapy treatment for 2 months now and has been improving greatly! Keep up the good work Mr. Lee!

“I have been to Encore before at the Winfield location. This is a great bunch of professionals and I love the way they treat their patients. I want to stay with Encore.”

-Mr. Lee.

Having a Total Knee Replacement? Here are a few FAQs to consider.

Total Knee Replacement

These are some of the frequently asked questions regarding total knee replacement (TKR):

How long does a TKR last?

A common reply to this question is that total joint replacement lasts 15-20 years. A more accurate way to think about longevity is via the annual failure rates. Most current data suggests that both hip and knee replacements have an annual failure rate between 0.5-1.0%. This means that if you have your total joint replaced today, you have a 90-95% chance that your joint will last 10 years, and a 80-85% that it will last 20 years. With improvements in technology, these numbers may improve.

What types of implants are there?

The orthopaedic implant industry has developed a number of innovative technologies in an effort to improve the outcomes of TJA. In recent years, these technologies have been marketed directly to patients, which has increased the awareness as well as confusion on what these different designs mean. The most important message is that while a certain manufacturer may claim that their design is better, almost all of the available registry data (large collections of data from countries that track TJA) show that there is no clear advantage to any of these designs when it comes to improving outcomes. Here are specific implant design terms:

  • Gender specific: This refers to a modified implant design that accounts for average anatomic differences between men’s and women’s knees. Most manufacturers have incorporated similar modifications in their newer designs, which allow for more sizing options so that the prosthesis can be more accurately fit to the patient’s native anatomy and recreate the natural function of the knee.
  • Rotating platform: This refers to a plastic bearing that independently rotates on a metal tray on which it is seated. More often, the plastic bearing locks into the metal tray – referred to as a “fixed bearing.” Some theoretical advantages to the rotating platform concept when it was initially designed was that it could reduce the wear of the plastic bearing, reduce the rate of loosening of the metal parts, and better replicate how a patient’s knee works (kinematics). Most current data shows that after 5-10 years in use, there does not appear to be any difference between rotating platform and fixed bearing designs in any of these outcomes.

Will my surgeon use a computer, robot, or custom cutting guide in my surgery?

There are many studies attempting to evaluate these emerging technologies and their influence of the success of surgeries. Each of these technologies has a specific goal that has fueled its development (i.e. more accuracy in implant placement, more efficient or faster surgery, etc.). To date, there appears to be both pros and cons to each of these technologies, but more research is required to determine what advantage, if any, these may offer. The best approach is to discuss this topic with your surgeon. You may want to know if they use one of these technologies, why they have chosen to do so, and what their experience has been in using it.

Will I need general anesthesia?

While general anesthesia is a safe option, both hip and knee replacements can be performed under regional anesthesia. Choices for regional anesthesia include spinal anesthesia, epidural anesthesia, or one of a variety of peripheral nerve blocks. Many surgeons and anesthesiologists prefer regional anesthesia because data shows it can reduce complications and improve your recovery experience with less pain, less nausea, less narcotic medicine required, etc.

How long will I stay in the hospital?

You will likely stay in the hospital for 1-3 days depending on your rehabilitation protocol and how fast you progress with physical therapy. This is highly dependent upon your condition before surgery, your age, and medical problems which can hinder your rehabilitation.

When can I walk after surgery?

Most surgeons and hospitals today emphasize getting you out of bed quickly. Most people are walking with the assistance of a walker on the day after surgery, and using a cane or nothing at all by 2-3 weeks.

When can I shower?

Many surgeons use waterproof dressings that allow for showering as early as the day after surgery. If your surgeon uses a standard dressing, you won’t be allowed to shower for 5-7 days, and usually no soaking for 3-4 weeks to allow the incision to fully heal.

Is TKR very painful?

Pain following total knee replacement has come a long way over the last 10-15 years with increased use of regional nerve blocks, spinal blocks, and various other modalities used for pain control. Total hip replacement is generally considered to be less painful than total knee replacement. Early range of motion and rapid rehabilitation protocols are also designed to reduce early stiffness and pain, making the procedure in general much less painful than in years past. You may have relatively mild pain following the procedure, or you may have a more difficult time than others. Everyone is unique and handles and perceives pain differently.

How long does it take to recover?

It can take up to 3 months for you to return to most activities, and likely 6 months to one year to fully recover to maximal strength and endurance following a TKR. This depends on your condition before surgery, additional medical problems, and your expectations.

Will I need physical therapy, and if so, for how long?

Most people who have undergone TKR require outpatient physical therapy following surgery. A skilled therapist can accelerate the rehabilitation as well as make the process more efficient with the use of dedicated machines and therapeutic modalities. Depending on your condition before surgery, physical therapy is beneficial for up to 3 months and rarely longer. The amount of therapy needed depends upon your condition before surgery, motivation, and general health.

When can I drive?

Most surgeons allow patients to drive at 4 to 6 weeks after surgery, and sometimes sooner if the operative leg is the left leg. There is some literature that states that your reaction time will not be back to normal prior to 6 weeks. You should not drive while on narcotics.

When can I return to work?

Returning to work is highly dependent on your general health, activity level and demands of your job. If you have a sedentary job, such as computer work, you can expect to return to work by 6-8 weeks. If you have a more demanding job that requires lifting, walking, or travel, you may need up to 3 months for full recovery

What restrictions will I have after surgery?

Restrictions following TKR are generally few and should be discussed with your surgeon. Following TKR, you will have some difficulty kneeling on the operative knee, which you will become less aware of with time, but will always have a general perception that the knee is artificial and doesn’t really feel like a normal knee. Most patients are able to return to usual activities and work but may have some difficulty performing heavy labor such as construction or farming. Most sporting activities are fine with the exception of running or jumping. Traveling should be not be affected by a joint replacement after the first 4-6 weeks when most surgeons advise against prolonged seated travel or flying due to increased risk of blood clot.

Are there complications to TKR?

  • TKR is primarily a pain relieving procedure; however, it may not relieve all pain, and there is a possibility of residual stiffness and swelling.
  • Although complications are relatively rare (1-2% of patients), patients may experience a complication in the postoperative period. These include very serious and possibly life threatening complications such as heart attack, stroke, pulmonary embolism and kidney failure.
  • Stiffness or loss of motion can also occur.
  • Infection (1%) is one of the most debilitating complications and often requires prolonged antibiotics with several additional surgeries to rid the infection.
  • A blood clot in the leg is also a relatively common complication requiring some type of blood thinner following surgery to reduce the incidence.
  • The implants can also fail over time due to wear or loosening of the components, but this generally occurs many years after surgery.

Should I continue to see my surgeon after I’m healed?

It is important to follow up with your surgeon after your joint replacement. In most cases, joint replacements last for many years. You need to meet with your treating doctor after surgery to ensure that your replacement is continuing to function well. In some cases, the replaced parts can start to wear out or loosen. The frequency of required follow up visits is dependent on many factors including the age of the patient, the demand levels placed on the joint, and the type of replacement. Your physician will consider all these factors and tailor a follow-up schedule to meet your needs. In general seeing your surgeon every 3-5 years is recommended.

Will I need to take antibiotics prior to seeing  a dentist or having other invasive procedures?

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery (AAOS) and American Dental Association (ADA) have generally recommended short-term antibiotics prior to dental procedures (1 dose 1 hour prior to dental procedure) for patients who have had joint replacements. This recommendation continues for up to 2 years after your joint replacement.

Two or more years after the replacement, continued use of antibiotics prior to dental procedures is based on the discretion of the treating surgeon and the patient. Your surgeon will consider many factors including whether or not you are at increased risk of infection due to immune suppression (i.e. diabetic, transplant patients, and rheumatoid arthritis).

The use of prophylactic antibiotics prior to dental cleanings and other invasive procedures remains controversial. Most orthopaedic surgeons now recommend lifetime suppression. Patients should discuss whether or not they need antibiotics prior to dental or other invasive procedures with their treating orthopedic surgeon.

Will my implant set off metal detectors at airports and courthouses?

Usually patients with joint replacements will set off metal detectors. It is reasonable for you to inform the TSA screening agent at the airport that you have had a joint replacement; however, you will still require screening and will need to follow the directions of the screening agent. Learn more about airport security.

There are millions of individuals with joint replacements, and screening protocols recognize that people who have had joint replacements may set off detectors. You do not need to carry specific documentation to prove that you have a joint replacement. Metal detector screenings follow universal protocols that allow for people with joint replacements to proceed after confirmation that no threat exists.

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