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A 26-year-old member asked:

Could it be a good idea to use heat after knee replacement?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Barry Waldman
Orthopedic Reconstructive Surgery 30 years experience
No: After surgery, ice tends to work better.
Dr. Frederick Buechel, Jr. MD
Orthopedic Surgery 21 years experience
Not early on: Early on patients try to control swelling. Heat causes vasodilation which means the tissues can swell more. Ice causes vasoconstriction which makes the swelling decrease. Therefore, in the first 4-6 weeks focus on reducing swelling. After this, warm can "loosen up" the tissues and relax the muscles allowing you to stretch the tissues better. Always follow exercise and workouts with icing.

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Last updated Mar 8, 2014

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