Beach life is OK after knee surgery

A reader due for knee replacement is worried the surgery will prevent future trips to the beach. There's no such concern, Dr. Keith Roach replies, provided high-impact activities such as running, or rock climbing, are off the table.

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Lifestyle

November 22, 2022 - 2:56 PM

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Dear Dr. Roach: I have arthritis in both knees, but otherwise, I’m in good health (I’m 5’6” and weigh 130 pounds). My Fitbit indicates I get about 9,000 steps per day. I am ready for knee replacement, but I’m concerned about one activity I do. We usually spend two consecutive weeks at the beach, and I love to boogie board.  When the tide is strong, it can take a lot of effort to get out to where the waves are.

Will I still be able to do this after knee surgery? I only do this activity during those two weeks. I live in Ohio, so I am not sure that doctors here understand beach life. — B.H.

Answer: In general, people may expect to return to most activities after knee replacement surgery. Prosthetic knees are very sturdy, but there are still some activities that are generally not recommended after a knee replacement, and these are ones that can cause high impact to the knee. It’s not the degree of effort; it’s avoiding sudden trauma to the new knee.

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