An Epub ahead of print at the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy (JOSPT) describes a study done comparing outcomes following Total Knee Arthroplasty (TKA; also sometimes known as TKR for ‘Total Knee Replacement’). Two rehabilitation protocols were followed by the two different groups in the study.
The two groups 8 were age and sex-matched. One group followed a standard, lower intensity rehabilitation program while the second group followed a higher intensity program that progressed as tolerated. The high intensity (HI) group had an additional month of treatments but there were already significant differences between the two groups at the 3.5 weeks post TKA. The HI group also utilized machine-based strengthening while the lower intensity group only progressed to ankle weights or resistive bands.
The study found that those in the higher intensity group had superior strength and functional outcomes while not experiencing any increase in pain or decrease in range of motion (ROM). The HI group showed significantly greater short-term and long-term strength and function as measured at 3.5 weeks, 12weeks and 52 weeks .
It’s worth noting that the study only involved a small sample size and lacked randomization and blinding. However, the researchers believe that this illustrates that larger similar studies are warranted.
J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2011 Sep 30;
Authors: Bade MJ, Stevens-Lapsley JE
Please see the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sport Physical Therapy (JOSPT) site for more topics.