The typical recovery time for carpometacarpal joint arthroplasty is about four months, according to Houston Methodist. About a week after performing the procedure, the surgeon examines the thumb and surrounding surgical area. Approximately one week later, the surgeon removes any remaining stitches that the body did not absorb.
After surgery, a surgeon usually places a bandage and brace around a patient's thumb to help it heal. The patient wears the brace for about six weeks before beginning a physical therapy program to aid recovery, notes Houston Methodist. Therapy typically starts with pain control and may include heat therapy. The next phase focuses on helping the patient regain stability, strength and range of motion in the thumb and hand and minimizing joint stress. Patients generally undergo about four to eight weeks of therapy before reaching full recovery.