Date of Award


Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)


Physical Therapy

First Advisor

David Relling


Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee -- rehabilitation; Ambulatory Care


Total knee arthroplasty (TKA) surgery is a common procedure performed for those patients seeking a return of knee function after substantial degeneration of the tibiofemoral joint. The TKA procedure is becoming increasingly popular as degenerative changes to the knee joints occurs at a younger age. The United States is facing an increasingly aging workforce. It is anticipated that there will be increasingly more members of the workforce seeking rehabilitation following TKA with goals of returning to work. The purpose of this article is to describe implementation of physical therapy in the recovery of a patient with degenerative joint disease of the knee subsequent TKA. The patient was a younger worker attempting to return to the workforce. This case report describes the post-surgical physical therapy from the operation until the patient was able to walk comfortably at home and care for himself. The final goal of being able to return to work was yet to be achieved at the conclusion of this patient care episode due to the discontinuation of physical therapy by the referring physician. An increased utilization of physical therapy in addition to a stronger role of physical therapy in the direction of care may have resulted in a more complete rehabilitation and better functional outcome including a safe and productive return to work.