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Microfracture is a surgical procedure aimed at cartilage regeneration.  The

arthroscopic technique involves clearing damaged tissue from the knee joint and

creating tiny holes (“microfractures”) in the bone area where the cartilage is

defective.  The underlying bone marrow seeps out through the holes and becomes

part of a blood clot that forms over the area.  The marrow contains stem cells,

which have the ability to form replacement cartilage between the bare-bone

surfaces of the knee.  Appropriate rehabilitation of the knee after surgery is

critical to the success of the operation. 


This protocol is a guideline for your rehabilitation after arthroscopic

microfracture knee surgery.  You may vary in your ability to do these exercises

and to progress to full function and resume your normal daily living.  Please

contact our office, 850-763-0346 if you are having any problems with your knee

or the physical therapy.


Phase One:  Week 1




*             Control pain and swelling

*             Maintain knee motion

*             Activate the quadriceps muscles




1.  You will be given post op pain medication prior to your surgery and you

should began taking this when you feel the sensation return after surgery.  Pain

medication is on an as needed basis, meaning if you don’t need it – don’t take


2.  The Northwest Florida Surgery Center will supply you will crutches before

leaving and you should continue to use both crutches until your follow up with

Dr. Talkington.  You can NOT bear full weight on the leg (unless otherwise

instructed).  You should also continue to use your crutches.


3.  Leave the bandage on and apply ice every 15 minutes of the hour for pain and

swelling.  Use a towel between the ice and skin to prevent skin injury. 

Physical therapy will remove the bandage the next day and then you can change to

waterproof band-aids and shower.


4.  You can gently move the knee (flexion and extension) and began ankle pumps, straight leg raises and quad sets.  Caution – do NOT put a pillow under the knee, this

tends to cause stiffness.  Instead place a pillow length wise under the entire

leg for elevation or roll a towel up and place it under the ankle.

Remember elevation is above the level of your heart.


5.  Should you develop a fever, shakes, or chills –  calf pain or swelling

contact our office at 850-763-0346.




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