Surgical Information

Post-Operative Instructions for Knee Arthroscopy

(You will receive your customized post-op instructions after your surgery.)


    • Elevate your knee and apply an ice pack to help reduce pain and swelling for 24 hours. 
    • Keep the dressing and incisions dry at all times. 
    • Small amounts of drainage on the dressing are normal and may be reinforced with a 4x4 gauze and Ace wrap.
    • You may bend your knee as much as the dressing allows.


    • Use cane or crutches for security and comfort as needed.  Discard them as soon as possible unless otherwise specified by your doctor.
    • ____________________ weight bearing is allowed as tolerated with pain and swelling being your guide to activities.


    • Begin exercises as soon as possible. Do 10 sets every hour up to 100 per day.
    • Quad Sets - Straighten your knee, tense the quad muscle, hold for 5 seconds, and then relax for 5  seconds.
    • Straight Leg Raises - Tightening your thigh muscle and lift your leg approximately 24 inches, hold for 5 seconds. Then slowly lower your leg keeping your leg straight and thigh muscle tight.
    • Ankle Pumps - Push your ankle up and down to promote blood flow.
    • Heel slides- Sit on a firm surface with your leg straight in front of you.  Slowly slide the heel of your operative leg toward your buttock by pulling your knee to your chest when you slide.
    No sports, running, excessive stair climbing, squatting, or jumping. If your job requires little physical activity, you may return to work in two to three days.  If your job requires considerable standing, lifting, walking or climbing, discuss your return to work date with the surgeon.


Take the following medication as directed:
_____________________________  ___________________________    _______________________________


    • Remove the dressing 48 hours after surgery. Leave the steri-strips intact.
    •  Clean the extremity with rubbing alcohol to remove the surgical prep solution.  You may shower at this point, no baths, hot tubs, or swimming.  Prior to showering, cover the knee with plastic wrap to keep the knee dry.
    •  If the knee gets wet, dry immediately.  After the shower cover the incisions with band-aids.  Change the band-aids daily. 


Your surgeon should be contacted by calling 703-810-5202 Option 3, 24 hours a day for any of the following symptoms:
Fever greater than 101.5 degrees F. 
Redness or swelling in the calf that doesn’t resolve overnight.
Numbness, loss of good color or coolness in the foot. 
Severe pain unresponsive to narcotic medication.
Excessive bleeding or vomiting.
Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath, CALL 911.


Your follow-up appointment will be scheduled when your surgery is scheduled. If you need to verify or change your post-op appointment, please call 703-277-BONE (2663)