What Equipment is Needed After Knee Surgery?

If you’re on schedule to undergo a knee surgery and have talked to a surgeon about it, you know that it will take some time to recover from the medical operation. Depending on your procedure, it could take weeks or months before you can get back to being able to independently and safely do your once-regular activities. 

During your discussions before the surgery, you would be informed that you’ll have to live on the first or ground floor of your home. While this setup is temporary, it is essential that your living quarters are functional and devoid of obstacles that could cause you to trip or fall. 

Once the operation is complete, you will have limited mobility and you’ll need a home that’s easy for you to navigate and manage. In addition to your space, you’ll also need some special equipment to ensure you’re able to follow your doctor’s precautions and keep your at-home recovery generally safe. 

In addition to discussions about the surgery, medications and cost during your pre-operation appointments, you should also talk to your doctor about what post knee surgery equipment you need. And, give yourself at least a month to get everything ready. 

Assistive Walking Devices

Assistive walking devices include: canes, crutches, and walkers or walking frames. They can provide support and stability to your gait, making walking easier and safer for you. 

The device you need to get depends on whether you’ll undergo a full or partial, or single or double knee replacement as well as on your physical condition after surgery. Crutches will most likely be used by younger or more physically fit patients, while walkers are necessary for older or less physically fit patients who require more stability when they walk. Follow your doctor’s recommendation.  

You’ll want to have your assistive walking device ready when you leave your hospital room as you will not be able to walk on your own for the first few days after your operation. Expect to use them for at least a few weeks during your recovery. 

You’ll be using them to help you walk short distances. They will also be helpful when sitting down as well as getting in and out of the toilet or tub or shower. 

If you’ll be using crutches, invest in padded crutch covers too. The padding will protect your armpits from bruising and pain. You’ll be more comfortable using them then. 

Another tip is to avoid carrying things, as you’ll need your hands to balance. Instead, you can use a fanny pack, a small backpack, or a walker basket to hold your things as you move about. 

Your Must-Have Bed-Related Equipment 

An important matter that you should prepare before your knee surgery is your sleeping arrangement.


You should have a bed on the first floor. It should be low enough so that your feet touch the floor when you are sitting down on it. However, it shouldn’t be too low or else you’ll be uncomfortable getting in and out of it. A firm mattress will also allow you to sit without sinking into the bed.

Adjustable bed frame

It would be great if you can get a sturdy, adjustable bed frame so your feet can be at the same level as your heart for easier blood circulation. It can also help reduce swelling and speed up your recovery. 

Wedge pillow

Alternatively, you could get a wedge pillow to serve the same purpose. In addition, you can also use it when icing your knee or keeping your knee elevated while you’re relaxing. At least, a wedge pillow is a better option than stacking several pillows. 

Bed rail

Another helpful item you can get is a bed rail with a sturdy, rubberized handgrip. It can assist you when getting in and out of bed, plus if you have one that has a pocket, you can place your phone, medicine, and other important stuff there. 

Leg lifter

Speaking of getting out of bed, a leg lifterwill be useful too. You can also use it to get into and out of the tub. Just remember not to get too dependent on it as you need to use your leg strength, if possible. 

Best Chair for Sitting Down

When you want to sit down, avoid soft couches and recliners for now unless your doctor tells you those are okay. Instead, prepare stiff-backed chairs with armrests. You can place one near your bed, in the bathroom, in the bedroom, and in any other area of the house which you plan to go to or use. 

Make sure that the chairs are just the right height. If one is too short, you can increase your sitting height by placing one or more pillows on it. 

Bathroom Mobility Equipment

After knee surgery, the bathroom can be a challenge to navigate, especially when wet. Hence, you should prepare it for your recovery with the following equipment and tools. 

Non-skid rugs or mats

Get those suction mats or other non-skid types to help prevent falls. Make sure to place one outside the tub too.

Grab bars

Install grab bars in your bathroom and/or shower. These will help you steady yourself so you’re safe while you’re there.

Bath or shower chair

A bath or shower chair can allow you to sit down while showering or taking a bath so that you don’t put unnecessary pressure on your operated leg. They should have rubber tips on the bottom to keep them steady. A chair with arms is good for the shower, but for the bathtub, get one with one arm or without arms for ease of transfer. 

Handheld shower head

This will give you more control of the water while you’re taking a shower sitting down. 

Long-handled sponge

As you’ll have a hard time reaching and bending, a sponge with a long handle can decrease body twisting. It will allow you to clean your body, especially your back and feet, safely and comfortably. 

Toilet safety rails

Toilet safety rails will help you sit down and get off the toilet safely and easily. 

Toilet seat frame

A toilet seat frame makes sitting on and getting off the toilet safe and easy, as you can hold on to the arms. 

Toilet seat extender

If the toilet seat in your bathroom is too low, get a toilet seat extender. It will help you keep your knee from flexing too much. 

Bedside commode

If the bathroom is a distance from where you’re staying, a bedside commode will be useful. It’s portable and will help keep your knee from getting stressed during recovery. 

Tools to Help You Dress and Undress

Dressing and undressing can be challenging after a knee surgery. Fortunately, there are tools you can use to help with the process. 

Reacher or tongs

Post surgery, you’ll have a hard time reaching or bending. A reacher or tongs will become an extension of your arm while you recover. You can use it to reach for or pick up items under 5 lbs. It will also be helpful when putting on your pants, shoes, or socks. Alternatively, you can use tongs, especially when using the toilet. 

Sock aid

A sock aid is a tool that’s used to help you put on your socks without bending. Get a pair that’s simple to grip. 

Shoehorn with a long handle

Another helpful tool is a long-handled shoehorn. With it, you won’t have to bend to put on your shoes or to remove them. 

Elastic laces

Get at least a pair of these to replace the standard laces of your shoes. After surgery, it is common to see swelling of the foot. The tension on elastic laces can be increased or decreased to adjust to the amount of swelling. You don’t have to tie them, plus they’re easy to slip in and out of. 

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