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Knee Replacement Exercises: What's Safe?

An active 75-year-old wants to reduce clicking sounds following knee replacement


Dear Sharon:
I am 75, and 6 months ago I had a total knee replacement. It went well; my knee bend is 132 and a flat stretch is 0. There's no pain, just some stiffness.

My question concerns a soft clicking that has developed in the knee. Annoying. Can you recommend a specific exercise that might overcome this problem or reduce it?

Thanks, B., Canada

Congratulations on a successful knee replacement! You are to be commended for staying active.

The best thing to do, especially following surgery, is to ask your doctor about the clicking sounds. He or she would be able to tell you if the clicking you hear is an indication of a problem, or just a normal result of knee replacement surgery.

Your doctor should also be able to suggest exercises tailored to your specific needs, or refer you to a physical therapist who can help. In any case, please don't try to diagnose and treat a medical issue by yourself.

For general advice about knee replacement exercises, I recommmend Jonathan Cluett, MD, the About.com Guide to Orthopedics. He talks about the best knee replacement exercises as part of his excellent overview on knee replacement surgery.

Dr. Cluett suggests biking, swimming and cycling as good knee replacement exercises; learn more about these activities by checking out Recommended Activities for Healthy Knees, below.

I hope your new knee (and your "old" one) continue to serve you for many years to come.

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