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Find out what to expect in the days and weeks after your hip or knee surgery.

Following surgery, you will go to recovery. When you have safely recovered from the anaesthetic, you will be transferred back to the ward. The ward staff will carry out observations to check that you are safe and they will give you food and drink.

If you have had a day-case surgical procedure, you will be encouraged to walk. You will be given advice on what to expect in the following-days and who to contact if there is a problem. You will normally see a physiotherapist who will give you exercises to practice until you are able to start formal physiotherapy. Discharge is normally a few hours after surgery. Please make sure you have someone who can drive you home and look after you.

If you have had an inpatient procedure such as a joint replacement, you will stay in hospital for 2-3 days. During this time you will receive physiotherapy and check-xrays. If you are doing exceptionally well, we would even aim to discharge you on the same day or day after surgery.

After discharge from hospital, you will need to rest for a while depending on the procedure to allow the soft-tissues to heal. Ice and compression can be helpful with swelling. Rehabilitation is important to help get your strength, confidence and range of motion back.

Rehabilitation will differ depending on the type of surgery that you have had, the physiotherapist that you are working with and your progress.


If you are undergoing hip surgery soon, or are contemplating it in the near future, you may have questions such as, how long until you can attempt to walk? How might you feel afterwards? When will you leave the hospital? To answers these questions, this blog takes you through the key stages of what happens once your operation is finished and how you may feel along the journey.

Everyone’s experiences will vary somewhat, based on factors such as age, general health and wellbeing and the specific type of hip surgery you undergo, so this blog explores as many different options as possible.