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Contact Us

To learn more about knee or hip replacement at Virginia Hospital Center, contact our Total Joint Replacement Patient Line. Call 703.558.6621 or email

After Joint Replacement

Learn about how to recover well after a hip or knee replacement surgery at Virginia Hospital Center.

Discharge Instructions

This video provides general instructions on how to care for yourself and your new joint after you go home. The information on this video will be available in writing in your discharge folder when you are ready to go home after your surgery. Your nurse will join you after you watch the video to review your medications and individual discharge instructions.

Postoperative Nutrition

Support wound healing, a strong immune system and reduce some side effects of pain medications by following a healthful diet after joint replacement surgery. See our recommendations:


Eat 20 to 30 grams of high-quality protein in each meal and 10 to 15 grams in each snack. Focus on high-quality proteins, such as:

  • Eggs (1 egg = 6 to 7 g protein)
  • Cheese (1 ounce = 6 to 7 y protein)
  • Lean meat, chicken or fish (a serving the size of a deck of cards = 20 to 25 g protein)
  • Low-fat milk (1 cup = 8 g protein)
  • Peanut butter (1 tablespoon = 6 to 7 g protein)
  • Soy-based foods


Zinc helps the immune system work properly and may help wounds heal. Get zinc by eating:

  • Beans
  • Lean meat, poultry and seafood
  • Milk
  • Nuts
  • Whole grains


Fiber can help prevent constipation and has a natural laxative effect. Women should eat 25 grams per day. Men should consume 38 grams per day. Sources of fiber include:

  • Beans
  • Fruit including prunes and prune juice (along with plenty of water)
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Peas (fresh and dried)
  • Vegetables
  • Whole Grains

Fruits & Vegetables

Fruits and vegetables help your body make collagen and repair tendons, ligaments and surgical wounds. Aim for 2 1/2 cups of vegetables and 2 cups of fruit a day. We recommend including these types of produce in your diet:

  • Baked Potato
  • Bell Peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Citrus Fruits
  • Kiwi
  • Strawberries

Vitamin D & Calcium

These nutrients are associated with healthy bones. Get them from low-fat dairy foods.


Drink 8 to 10 cups a day.

Instructional Videos

Watch these videos for tips on how to move safely while doing daily activities after joint replacement surgery.

Preventing Hip Dislocation

Learn which positions to avoid after hip replacement surgery. These are called hip precautions. Your surgeon will tell you which precautions are necessary for you to prevent hip dislocation.

Using a Reacher

Review how to use a Reacher after your joint replacement surgery.

Putting on Socks

Get instructions on how to use the Sock Aid after your joint replacement surgery.

Put on Compression Stockings

Learn how to put on compression stockings after your joint replacement surgery.

Get on an Elevated Commode

See how to walk and pivot to the elevated commode after your joint replacement surgery.

Shower Chair

This video provides instructions for how to safely use a shower chair in a shower stall after your joint replacement surgery.

Tub/Transfer Bench

This video provides instructions for how to safely take a shower in a tub using a transfer bench after your joint replacement surgery.

Getting In/Out of Bed

HIP: This video provides instructions for how to safely get in and out of bed after your hip replacement surgery.

KNEE: This video provides instructions for how to safely get in and out of bed after your knee replacement surgery.

Related Locations

  • Main Hospital
    Main Hospital


    1701 N George Mason Drive
    Arlington, VA 22205