Outpatient Knee Replacement Therapy

Southern Approach Outpatient Knee Replacement Therapy Questions and Answers

At Southern Sports Medicine, we pioneered the Southern Approach to the knee, and are The Experts in Outpatient Knee Replacement. See our FAQs below where we answer most questions. We are also happy to answer any additional specific questions you may have. Feel free to Contact us, or Make an Appointment.

The Southern Approach Outpatient Knee Replacement Therapy

At Southern Sports Medicine, we pioneered the Southern Approach to the knee, and are The Experts in Outpatient Knee Replacement. See our FAQs below where we answer most questions. We are also happy to answer any additional specific questions you may have.

Feel free to Contact us, or Make an Appointment.

Southern Approach Outpatient Knee Replacement Therapy Near Me in Gallatin, TN and Nashville, TN
Southern Approach Outpatient Knee Replacement Therapy Near Me in Gallatin, TN and Nashville, TN

What is Southern Approach Outpatient Knee Replacement Therapy?

Southern Approach Outpatient Knee Replacement Therapy is designed specifically for a patient who is otherwise active and healthy, but their knee problem is significantly limiting their quality of life.

Unlike the traditional surgical technique of cutting through muscle and tendon, the “Southern Approach” is an outpatient procedure that involves surgery from the side of the knee. In 2014, Dr. Gautsch performed the first successful outpatient knee replacement surgery using the “from the side technique” Southern Approach.

Dr. Gautsch and his highly qualified team have performed more outpatient knee replacement surgeries than any other surgical center in Middle Tennessee. 

Additionally, the Southern Sports Medicine Institute has performed more “from the side” Southern Approach Outpatient Knee Replacements than all surgery centers in Tennessee combined. 

What can I expect after my surgery?

Following Southern Approach Outpatient Knee Replacement Therapy, a patient is usually up and walking within a few hours and shortly after is able to bear full weight on the knee and have full bend in the knee. Most often, patients are on their way home within 3 to 4 hours after surgery. For the first 12 to 24 hours a patient is given a walker to use for balance and safety and can discontinue its use as soon as they are able to do so. Patients are given at home exercises to improve motion before actual physical therapy begins. After surgery, a patient will arrange their post-operative rehabilitation with a trained and experienced physical therapist at the Southern Sports Medicine Institute. 

The goal of post-operative physical therapy is:

  • Relief from pain
  • Improve mobility and movement
  • Improve balance
  • Recover from a sports injury

A physical therapist at the Southern Sports Medicine Institute will examine and assess a patient’s needs and listen to any issues they may have with regard to pain or any other symptoms following surgery.

How long does it take to recover from Southern Approach Outpatient Knee Replacement Therapy?

Over the course of about five weeks of the Southern Approach Physical Therapy, the patient will be doing multiple strengthening and stretching exercises, which commonly include an airdyne bike, mini-trampoline, and balance board exercises.

After the second week of physical therapy most patients are able to drive their own car, and over the next few weeks are able to walk up and down stairs. After about five weeks of physical therapy most patients have full knee bending ability and can walk up to several miles per day.

Even while tissues continue to heal, a patient will be able to return to most normal activities, as full strength begins to return.

The Southern Approach to physical therapy protocol is a very important part of recovery. The goal of the Southern Approach physical therapy is to quickly achieve strength, endurance and motion at a fast pace, in advance of the forming of scars.

In order to achieve the best recovery results, a patient needs to be fully committed to the progressive physical therapy workout regime.

Physical Therapists at the Southern Sports Medicine Institute work in close conjunction with the surgeons to monitor a patient’s progress. They also work to ensure the patient is able to progress in their therapy to recover with the most function, as quickly as possible.

Each patient is different, as are the physical conditions they are experiencing, and may take more or less time to reach their physical therapy goals.

A patient’s progress is tracked and adjusted, and many are given exercise and stretching activities to do at home in order to help speed up the recovery process.

Reach out to our team at the Southern Sports Medicine Institute to learn more about the benefits of Southern Approach Outpatient Knee Replacement Therapy. Our dedicated team of healthcare professionals want you to start enjoying life again. Boosting your quality of life is just one appointment away. We serve patients from Gallatin TN, Nashville TN, Cottontown TN, Castalian Springs TN, LaGuardo TN, and Graball TN.

What can I expect after my surgery?

Within an hour or so of your procedure you’ll be up and walking, able to bear your full weight on it. Like most, you’ll likely be headed home 3-4 hours after surgery. For balance and safety you’ll be given a walker to use for the first 12-24 hours. As soon as you can safely walk without it you should. At home, you’ll be doing exercises and working on your motion, even before formal PT gets started. PT will include more stretching and strengthening exercises, aerodyne bike mini-tramp, and balance board among other things. Most people start driving their own car again in the second week. The PT protocol covers a lot of ground fast. Progressively over five weeks of physical therapy, you should be going up and down stairs one right after the other, walking up to several miles a day, have full knee bending and straightening again, recovered most function and be back to most activities, even while the tissues continue to heal.

Our very specific Southern Approach Physical Therapy protocol is an important part of the recovery. The goal is to rapidly achieve motion, strength and endurance, at an accelerated pace, before scarring has a chance to form. So it is important that a patient is both committed and able to do the progressive therapy workouts. While it is possible to do this therapy at other facilities (if coming from a long distance or for insurance reasons), we have consistently seen the fastest and highest level outcomes when people do their physical therapy with our therapists here at Southern Sports Medicine. No other therapists have as much experience with this procedure as they do. SSMI PTs work directly with our surgeons to direct and closely monitor your progress to help you recover the most function, as quickly as possible.

Our Southern Approach experience, now over many years with thousands of knees, includes a success rate of approximately 98%, far above the 80% seen with knee replacement done the traditional way. And our patients regularly achieve higher levels of function, 130+ degrees range of motion compared to the average 110-115, and can return to most types of work, most sports, and most importantly, a renewed quality of life. In reviews, patients frequently tell us it has been “life changing”. More than 99% of the Southern Approach knee replacements we’ve performed are still functioning well!

If you’d like to learn more about the “Southern Approach” outpatient knee replacement, or if you’d like a second opinion about surgery, or to set up a consultation with us at Southern Sports Medicine Institute, don’t hesitate to reach out. We’d be happy to tell you more, either over the phone or in-person. If you are healthy and active but being limited by your arthritic knee, have been told you need knee replacement, or your knee is affecting your quality of life, Contact us today. We see patients from all over Gallatin TN, Hendersonville TN, in and around Nashville TN, and all surrounding counties; from East Tennessee, West Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, Alabama, and as far away as Florida, Iowa, Missouri, Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, Arkansas, and both North Carolina and South Carolina.