Cryotherapy after Total Knee Arthroplasty provides faster recovery and better ranges of motion in short term follow up. Results of a prospective comparative study


cryotherapy ; total knee arthroplasty ; rehabilitation ; complications

Published online: Feb 13 2021

B. van Ooij, J.I. Wiegerinck, J.T. Wegener, C.N. van Dijk, M.U. Schafroth

From the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam Movement Sciences, Amsterdam, The Netherlands


Cryotherapy is applied in Total Knee Arthroplasty (TKA) to improve functional outcome. The aim of this study is to investigate whether an advanced cryotherapy device does not increase the risk of com- plications and improves knee function or decreases swelling.

A prospective cohort of TKA patients was formed by a cryotherapy group and a control group. The primary outcome was complication ratio. Our secondary outcomes were functional results and swelling. No significant differences were found in complication ratio between 31 patients in the cryotherapy group and 31 patients in the control group. The cryotherapy group showed a significant better knee flexion and less swelling in the early rehabilitation phase. No differences were found at the other follow-up moments or in the other outcomes.

This advanced cryotherapy device is safe in respect of postoperative complications, improves knee function and decreases swelling in the early rehabilitation phase. However, it is questionable if an advanced cryotherapy device with its additional costs is necessary to provide the desired effects of cryotherapy.