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Old 01-04-2010, 12:14 PM   #31
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

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Originally Posted by jmlm4245 View Post
My staples were out in 2 weeks and although red it had closed properly. I used the Arnica Montana and it looks pretty good today. What are the Ted hose? I was not told about them. Will the advil also help with the fluid?

Linda
Advil won't help with the fluid. Keeping your leg elevated when possible will help some. The Ted hose are those support stockings they put on you in the hospital. I just got some better ones on line and wore them when working after surgery.

 
Old 01-05-2010, 06:57 AM   #32
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

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Originally Posted by Frannyia View Post
Hope it's warmer where you are. Ice is our problem and it won't go away anytime soon, so I will allow my husband to take me places for awhile since its not quite 3 weeks.

My therapist today looked at the scar and said it in very good shape, only one spot looked like it needed a butterfly closure for a while longer.

The TED HOSE are those wonderful support stockings they give you at the hospital that are such a pain. As stated before, I got some better ones and wore them after returning to work last year. They really helped with the swelling.

If you can find somewhere with a warm water (about 89 degree) pool and do exercises and water walking for a few months, I believe it will help you. It allows you to do the exercises to build your muscles without as much active stress on your new knee.

Keep up the exercises a couple times a day at home but don't overdo it. There is a point of diminishing benefits. Icing and Advil are good.
It's cold here, but nothing like Iowa. Central Texas has a few cold days when a deep cold front comes in, but it's mainly in the 60's this time of the year. I drive short distances, but would never attempt more.

I'll try and find an indoor heated pool. I now get in a warm bath and do bending exercises, it's a 6 ft. whirlpool, so it's very comforting after my 1 hour workout. I'm starting out-patient PT on Wednesday, I'll ask them about the TED hose.

Thank you,
Linda

 
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Old 01-05-2010, 07:04 AM   #33
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

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Originally Posted by ladyscout View Post
I had shots to prevent blood clots for 10 days but after I got home from the nursing facility I just couldn't do it and stopped at 7 days. Figured I'd stay more active on my own - it worked - I'm alive.
I'm 7 weeks post-op. I go the PT, out-patient, 3 x's a week and to my gym the other days to ride the bike and get into the hot tub and exercise. I'm also having a heck of a time walking right. It's like learning all over again and my hip, back, neck are in so much pain. I'm still waking up, moving, stretching every hour of the night. I have been driving, carefully, and getting to the store (the cart is like a big walker!) and that lifts my spirits.
When I go to the store, I use one of the electric carts. You're right though, even going to the store is uplifting.

I walk alright, it's just painful. This surgery is no cakewalk, and most of us were really active before. We just have to get over the idea that we're in this mess.

Linda

 
Old 01-06-2010, 07:40 PM   #34
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

I'm three weeks out today. Last night it wasn't snowing, so made my first trip out except for physical therapy. My husband took me too a movie and dinner with another couple. It was GREAT to be OUT!!! The piles of snow looked like mountains in the parking lots. (No exaggeration.)

I'm walking fine, but took the cane because of the ice. I was ready to get home and put the feet up after the 4 hours. The knee was starting to ache. Plus, we wanted to see the rest of the Iowa/Georgia Orange Bowl Game. Way to Go Hawkeyes.

 
Old 01-06-2010, 11:59 PM   #35
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

I've gone through two TKR's and the sleeping issues didn't resolve until about 6-8 weeks out. When I couldn't sleep, I listened to music with my mp3 player. It was a God-send. I also went to Joint Camp at my hospital and did quite well as long as I followed the plan. Still have the notebooks.

The back and hip issues were similar for me as well and resolved as my gait improved. It is a process but I remember that each time I began to turn the corner by 6 weeks and was able to say I was glad I did it by 8. Actually, I was glad much sooner because the pain was different but it was hard to remember that during the process. I also discovered that I really enjoyed walking more than sitting! Sitting does get very tiring for the leg.

One last thing - the prescription meds are necessary but there comes a day when you realize that they are part of what's dragging you down emotionally. It was a bit of a withdrawal the first time but the second time I was able to switch to Ibuprofen and Tylenol arthritis sooner and was much happier.
Linda in Vermillion SD

 
Old 01-07-2010, 07:48 AM   #36
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

Linda, we obviously went to the same hospital, possibly had the same great Dr. from SF.

Perhaps the terrible pain prior to surgery is why I felt such a difference post-op. Being very sensitive to the meds, and being able to get away from them asap did help emotionally. When back to work, moving and walking was wonderful. The stability of the new knee was a relief. My family, friends and students were so happy to observe the lack of pain and stability with which I was able to move.

I went to therapy yesterday. Rather than feeling like extreme discomfort, it feels more like when I have overexercised in the past and was just stiff. Things are improviing.

Good luck to all.

 
Old 01-07-2010, 07:02 PM   #37
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

This week I had appointments with my surgeon and one with my PCP -- who was the one who urged me to have the surgery. I was able to tell both of them that having the surgery was the best thing I could have done!

Sure, it was difficult at first, and even after the immediate surgery and the PT, it was difficult with the back pain and with my shoulders from lifting myself up from low positions. Also the extreme tiredness. But over the weeks, everything came together. I never took pain meds for more than 5 or 6 weeks, and even then only before PT --- as I hated the way medications made me feel .

I am now 3 months/1 week post op, and altho I gave up the walker after 1 week, I began using my rolling cane less and less. It was about 2 to 3 weeks ago that I realized that I wasn't using it at all! AND -- today, in the supermarket parking lot, there were no carts halfway down the lot, so I walked by myself up to the store. First time in a long time I did that, as I was using my rolling cane about a year before the surgery.

My knee still feels like a block of wood, but my ROM keeps improving with daily exercise.

Would I do the other knee? Yes! But I wouldn't wait so long. Also, I would keep a log to track my progress. Quite an experience!

 
Old 01-07-2010, 09:18 PM   #38
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

Quote:
Originally Posted by scribytoo View Post
I've gone through two TKR's and the sleeping issues didn't resolve until about 6-8 weeks out. When I couldn't sleep, I listened to music with my mp3 player. It was a God-send. I also went to Joint Camp at my hospital and did quite well as long as I followed the plan. Still have the notebooks.

The back and hip issues were similar for me as well and resolved as my gait improved. It is a process but I remember that each time I began to turn the corner by 6 weeks and was able to say I was glad I did it by 8. Actually, I was glad much sooner because the pain was different but it was hard to remember that during the process. I also discovered that I really enjoyed walking more than sitting! Sitting does get very tiring for the leg.

One last thing - the prescription meds are necessary but there comes a day when you realize that they are part of what's dragging you down emotionally. It was a bit of a withdrawal the first time but the second time I was able to switch to Ibuprofen and Tylenol arthritis sooner and was much happier.
Linda in Vermillion SD
I went to my first out patient therapy yesterday and was told I'm off the chart in recovery. I guess those funky 70's songs and Pilates are kicking in. I actually worked with a friend today who has had a hard time recovering from TKR. She says on a scale of 1-10, I'm a 10 and she's a 2. I hate that. I don't know why I'm so ahead of her. My hope is that I can help her in her efforts.

I'm doing 30 minutes on level 2 on the bike and another hour with PT recommended exercises as well as my beloved Pilates. They are so adapted to knee injuries.

I'm a Texan so I'm watching Texas/Bama tonight. My husband was born in Bama, so I can't yell to loud for Texas. We lost our QB, so it's anybody's game.

Hook-em Horns

Linda

 
Old 01-08-2010, 12:47 AM   #39
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

[QUOTE=jmlm4245;4158349] I actually worked with a friend today who has had a hard time recovering from TKR. She says on a scale of 1-10, I'm a 10 and she's a 2. I hate that. I don't know why I'm so ahead of her. My hope is that I can help her in her efforts.

Wow, how great to have a friend to work out with going through the same thing. At times felt a bit isolated and had to find the motivation to get into it - always so much easier with someone else.

Keep up the great work - you are doing so well.

 
Old 01-08-2010, 10:29 AM   #40
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

I spent the whole hour of PT this last Wed. crying! I have never worked so hard and been through so much pain for so little return - in my opinion. I did a 600 mile, 6 day, bike ride two yrs. ago from San Francisco to L.A. I trained for it and did it at 62. This TKR has kicked my butt! I'm on anti-inflamatories now, told I need to cut back on my work-outs and be patient! Yesterday I took the day - bought a pair of shoes, went to lunch with a bike friend and went to the movies. Today I have to leave in a couple minutes for PT and I hate to go. I'll be in pain - again. I'm not doing so well with straightening the leg. God I wish I was done with this! Just fenting - maybe I'll be less teary at PT.

 
Old 01-08-2010, 02:44 PM   #41
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

Three weeks two days out. Muscles are still tight, but am off meds and sleeping through the night. That is a blessing. The PT said I was doing exceptionally well. The bending and straightening unassisted are very good. I was also told a couple more PT sessions, then can go on my own to the heated water therapy pool. I'm anxious to get in the pool.

Every one, stay warm. It's to reach -31 here tonight. The knees are telling me the weather isn't great.

I'm sure most have you have realized you have become meteorologists with you new knees.

 
Old 01-09-2010, 05:24 AM   #42
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frannyia View Post
Three weeks two days out. Muscles are still tight, but am off meds and sleeping through the night. That is a blessing. The PT said I was doing exceptionally well. The bending and straightening unassisted are very good. I was also told a couple more PT sessions, then can go on my own to the heated water therapy pool. I'm anxious to get in the pool.

Every one, stay warm. It's to reach -31 here tonight. The knees are telling me the weather isn't great.

I'm sure most have you have realized you have become meteorologists with you new knees.
Central Texas is a bit warmer. No sub-zero temps... yet.

I ride the stationary bike 30 minutes a day and do all the PT exercises, so I do about an hour + everyday. I do pretty well until about 5 o'clock and then the pain sets in. I have an old fashioned headache type ice bag that I just lay on it while on the computer or watching TV.

Keep warm
Linda

 
Old 01-09-2010, 02:16 PM   #43
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

I still ice after exercising twice a day. I haven't gotten on our stationary bike yet, but will soon. I do use the bike at PT though.

A ziploc bag with a washcloth wet with water and dishwashing soap works well. It doesn't freeze so hard and is more pliable, like the cold packs for coolers. I use one of those also.

The clouds came in last night and the temp didn't drop all the way down. Today, the sun is shining and we are having a 'heat wave, it's 18 degrees.

 
Old 01-10-2010, 08:55 AM   #44
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

I've finally gotten the muscle above my knee, inside, to work. It was numb and I couldn't get it to contract. PT finally put electrodes on it while I tried using it and I could finally "feel" where it was to be used. This has helped my ability to walk. I had to stop exercising so much because my knee was always inflamed. I'm on anti-inflamatories now and only exercising every other day and doing much better. Still not sleeping through the night. Knee gets stiff and sore and I have to move, stretch, etc. It is in the 70's and sunny here in southern California - that helps.

 
Old 01-12-2010, 05:23 PM   #45
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Re: Total Knee Replacement Recovery

Just wanted to say best of luck to everyone going through this. I had my left knee done 3 months tomorrow (10/13) and will return next week to my teaching position. I still have a lot of stiffness, but I think part of that is the new joint, and part of it me. I don't think I turned out to be the best patient. I know that I was told it would take 3 months, but in my mind, I figured "a couple of weeks, and then I'll enjoy the rest of my vacation." Big ha-ha on me. I had the crying, which was definitely the meds. I also had terrible sleep issues. Couldn't seem to find the right "spot." Now, I wake once nightly (and I think that is more to pee...lol) and I can sleep in my favorite position, on my stomach, without the assortment of pillow ramps (knee up, knee down, knee over, on the back, on the side....no wonder I was exhausted.) I go to PT twice weekly. I got my PCP to give me the meds I needed, when the surgeon shut me down (and used them frugally - for PT and rough nights.) I took a trip to Disney World for New Year's and navigated with a scooter. My husband has been wonderful, but once in a while expresses that I should be walking better "Stand up straight. Heel - toe, heel -toe." Well, surgeon says I'm fine, PT says I'm fine. I just tell him. "Why don't you just go look it up on the internet about how long this should take!" I'm doing just fine. Every day is an improvement. And it will be the same for each of you feeling like it won't. Blessings and speedy recovery to all. Nancy from MA

 
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