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Janet: Knee Replacement Inpatient Rehab

The Challenge: Knee Pain

Janet, 69, from Seneca, Pa., has always maintained an active lifestyle but didn’t play aggressive sports. That's why she was surprised to have so much pain in her knees.

She saw an orthopaedic surgeon who told her that the bones in both of her knees were rubbing together. She would need a knee replacement.

“When I walked across a room, I felt like I’d crumble,” recalls Janet. “A lady at church asked if I was in pain. I thought I was hiding it well but I wasn’t. I wanted to get both of my knees fixed at the same time and be done with it.”

The Path to UPMC for Knee Replacement Surgery

Her surgery took place on September 30 and her nurses and therapists had her up and walking that same day.

Four days later, she checked in at the UPMC Rehabilitation Institute at UPMC Northwest for inpatient physical therapy. She’d stay for ten days.


The Solution: Inpatient Physical Therapy

During her time at the UPMC Rehabilitation Institute, Janet worked hard to push through the pain and get her knees working again.

Her physical therapists had her:

  • Stretch and flex her ankles.
  • Squeeze a fitness ball with her knees.
  • Walk up and down stairs and do a lot of walking in general.

Janet says:

“At first, I couldn’t get up in the morning unless I used my arms to move my legs out of bed. By the end of my stay, I could move my legs on my own and get out of bed much more easily.”

A mother of three grown children, Janet now has two young grandchildren. They gave her the inspiration to get better and be able to walk again.

“My physical therapists were wonderful,” exclaims Janet. “I can’t say enough nice things about them. They’d make me do exercises I didn’t want to do, but they were kind about it. They’d remind me that I had to push through and work hard in order to get better.”

The Results: Traveling the Country

After leaving inpatient rehabilitation, Janet continued outpatient physical therapy for two months though the UPMC Rehabilitation Institute.

She is now able to go outside for long walks with her husband, ride her bike, and play with her grandkids.

Janet and her husband — both retired — now travel around the country to visit their children who live in various states. And they spend their winters in Tucson, Arizona.

“I’m doing as well as I am, and am able to do so much traveling, because of my inpatient and outpatient physical therapy at UPMC.”

Learn more about inpatient rehab

To find out more about our services, contact the UPMC Rehabilitation Institute.

Or, visit the UPMC HealthBeat blog to read:

This patient's treatment and results may not be representative of all similar cases.

Read more Rehab Institute Patient Stories.