Skip to Content

Patellar Fracture Repair

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

A patellar fracture repair is surgery to repair a fractured and displaced patella (kneecap).

Knee Anatomy

DISCHARGE INSTRUCTIONS:

Call your local emergency number (911 in the US) for any of the following:

  • You fall and injure the knee that you had surgery on.
  • You feel lightheaded, short of breath, and have chest pain.
  • You cough up blood.

Call your doctor or surgeon if:

  • Your leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.
  • Your foot or toes are swollen, cold, numb, or they turn white or blue.
  • Blood soaks through your bandage.
  • Your stitches come apart.
  • Your cast or splint breaks or gets damaged.
  • You have a fever.
  • Your wound is red, swollen, and feels warm.
  • You have pus coming from your wound.
  • The hardware in your knee is poking you or is painful.
  • Your knee pain gets worse or does not go away, even after treatment.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Medicines:

You may need any of the following:

  • Prescription pain medicine may be given. Ask your healthcare provider how to take this medicine safely. Some prescription pain medicines contain acetaminophen. Do not take other medicines that contain acetaminophen without talking to your healthcare provider. Too much acetaminophen may cause liver damage. Prescription pain medicine may cause constipation. Ask your healthcare provider how to prevent or treat constipation.
  • Take your medicine as directed. Contact your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him or her if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Wound care:

When you are allowed to bathe, carefully wash the wound with soap and water. Dry the area and put on new, clean bandages as directed. Change your bandages when they get wet or dirty.

Physical therapy:

A physical therapist teaches you exercises to help improve movement and strength, and to decrease pain.

Use support devices as directed:

  • Brace, cast, or splint care:
    • Check the skin around the device every day.
    • Do not get the device wet. Cover it with 2 plastic bags. Tape the bags above the device to prevent water from getting in. Keep your knee out of the water as much as possible.
    • Do not push or lean on any part of the cast or splint because it may break.
    • Do not put any sharp or pointed objects inside the cast.
  • Crutches or a cane: Follow instructions about how much weight to put on your injured leg. Use these devices as directed.
    Walking with Crutches

Follow up with your doctor or surgeon as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

© Copyright IBM Corporation 2021 Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or IBM Watson Health

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Learn more about Patellar Fracture Repair (Discharge Care)

IBM Watson Micromedex

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.