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J Arthroplasty. 2012 Feb;27(2):193-200.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.arth.2011.04.009. Epub 2011 Jul 12.

To use or not to use continuous passive motion post-total knee arthroplasty presenting functional assessment results in early recovery.

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Department of Orthopadic Surgery, Lilavati Hospital and Research Centre, Mumbai, India.


Continuous passive motion (CPM), though of doubtful value, is yet routinely practiced post-total knee arthroplasty (TKA). We prospectively distributed 84 patients with TKA to 1 of the 3 standard rehabilitation regimes: no-CPM, 1-day-CPM, and 3-day-CPM. We recorded a unique "Timed up and go" test besides pain, Western Ontario and McMaster Universities (WOMAC), short form-12 (SF-12), range of motion, knee and calf swelling, and wound healing parameters. Our standardized and elaborate measurements preoperatively and on postoperative days 3, 5, 14, 42, and 90 showed no statistically significant difference among the 3 groups in each parameter. We concluded that CPM gives no benefit in immediate functional recovery post-TKA, and in fact, the postoperative knee swelling persisted longer. We have since then discontinued its use in our patients without any untoward effect.

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