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    Old 08-20-2010, 05:41 PM   #1
    jennifer60
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    3rd week Total knee

    This is my 3rd week after total knee replacement surgery. I did not have any idea what was going to happen. I guess I thought I did but now I know that I have no idea.I went to the joint class before surgery, talked to different doctors, and read a lot about the surgery.I am very depressed about where I am in my recovery.I am still using the walker and having a lot of pain at night.I have PT at home right now and I dont think that is going all the well. I am at 96 on the ROM. I cannot get my surgery leg all the way striaght.We work on that each time the PT guy comes to my house.When I walk with the walker I am not walking the right way.I am trying not to get upset, but its really hard.I cry everyday and I am driving my husband nuts.I know it will get better, sometimes it just does not seem like it.

     
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    Old 08-20-2010, 09:55 PM   #2
    Cal08
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    Thumbs down Re: 3rd week Total knee

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jennifer60 View Post
    This is my 3rd week after total knee replacement surgery. I did not have any idea what was going to happen. I guess I thought I did but now I know that I have no idea.I went to the joint class before surgery, talked to different doctors, and read a lot about the surgery.I am very depressed about where I am in my recovery.I am still using the walker and having a lot of pain at night.I have PT at home right now and I dont think that is going all the well. I am at 96 on the ROM. I cannot get my surgery leg all the way striaght.We work on that each time the PT guy comes to my house.When I walk with the walker I am not walking the right way.I am trying not to get upset, but its really hard.I cry everyday and I am driving my husband nuts.I know it will get better, sometimes it just does not seem like it.
    Jennifer,

    This is big surgery and we all heal at different rates. Frankly, I hadn't made anywhere near the progress you already have made at the same point in my recovery.

    Give yourself a break! Your body is putting a lot of energy into healing and the drugs and surgery have probably really impacted your outlook. I do agree that they don't do a very good job of preparing you for the rehab.

    I didn't keep a journal as I went through rehab but I will next time. It is really important to be able to see that you are making progress.

    Try to keep in mind everything you will be able to do once the healing is done. It is very tough but the results truly are miraculous. My life has been transformed. I walk for miles and no longer have to turn down invitations because the location is too far or too hilly. I had forgotten how much joy there is in just being able to move.

    One bit of advice...take it with a big grain of salt when other patients compare their progress to yours. I was young (54) and in good shape when I got this done but got really discouraged because older and frail people seemed to be recovering at a much faster pace than I did. It took a long time but ultimately I was the tortoise that won the race. I have far exceeded both my own and my surgeon's expectations as to how much range of motion I would be able to get.

    The PT is tough so take the drugs before you go and keep checking these boards. There are some really great people here and they provide proof that there is light at the end of the tunnel. They will also provide assurances that you are far from alone in what you are going through.

    All the best

    Last edited by Cal08; 08-21-2010 at 09:23 PM.

     
    Old 08-21-2010, 07:21 AM   #3
    jennifer60
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee

    Thank- you so much for your reply.I just cannot tell you how much it helps.I have support from my husband, family and some friends.I think right now in my recovery I need to hear from people that are going though it too.It is strange that your support can come from a person that you do not even know.I got 2 replies yours and 1 more, and I got so much from both of them.I do feel better this morning, I got up early and helped with breakfast.Then I was able to use the real bathroom....LOL that is really cool.I am going to try to not get all stressed about what I cannot do, and focus on what I can. Thanks again for writing,
    Jennifer

     
    Old 08-21-2010, 08:13 AM   #4
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee

    Hi Jennifer. Like you I am a little over 3 weeks post op with a RTKR. Like you I did a lot of research on the surgery, reviewed posts from this site and others and thought I had a good idea what to expect. Wrong! We are all different. I had pretty traumatic damage to my knee but from day 1 haven't experienced what I would call pain. I have aching and keep under control with the good meds but never had major pain. My recovery is going slow from my stand point but am improving weekly. I am only at -15 extension and finally hit 61 flexion Thursday. I started out patient PT last week and feel that is when I really started to see some progress. My PT has me on a couple of machines, Nu Step and a recumbent. I can't go completely around but she has me use my left leg to help push the right and help with bending. I was stuck in the low 50's until Thursday when something finally moved and finally started increasing the flexion. I also found that most of the aching I had been experiencing has gone and started using my cane around the house yesterday.

    Keep up with your exercises on your off days from PT and try to start out patient PT as soon as you can. I wanted another week of in home PT but was convinced by my PT that I should go to out patient. You will find that just getting out of the house will help with your overall attitude.

     
    Old 08-21-2010, 11:17 AM   #5
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee

    Morider,

    The advice I gave to Jennifer also applies to you.

    My numbers were very similar to yours at the same stage after the operation. Now I am strong and can walk for miles. What amazes me most is that after nearly a decade of walking around with a flexion contracture of anywhere between 19 and 32 degrees the leg is very comfortable extending fully.

    Be careful when you compare your healing trajectory to others. We all heal at different speeds and have different histories and reasons that we needed the operation. Most of all don't let other patients convince you that you aren't working hard enough or that you are in trouble. They don't know. Just do your best.

    You may hit some plateaus along the way and the rehab can be long and at times grueling. Just keep your eyes on the results that you are seeking. This operation truly can transform your life. There is so much joy in being able to freely move.

    Best of luck

    Last edited by Cal08; 08-21-2010 at 09:16 PM.

     
    Old 08-21-2010, 07:24 PM   #6
    TooOldToWork
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee

    Hi Jennifer: My husband also had his knee done 3 weeks ago and his progress sounds just like yours for this point in time. He has a lot of pain at night and hasn't really had a good night sleep. It's a HUGE thing to recover from and a lot of work. He did start out patient PT yesterday and the getting up and going out to do something. Along with the effort of PT make you feel less of an invalid and more like a real person. But all in all it sounds like you are right on target. You will be very suprised how much better you will in just 1 more week.

     
    Old 08-22-2010, 09:33 AM   #7
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee


    I understand you fully. I have had two knee replacements about 3 yrs ago. I attribute my success with trying to learn as much as possible PRIOR to and AFTER the surgeries (2). As this time PRIOR has passed for you, your best avenue of approach is to change your mental attitude towards this whole procedure.

    First, this is a process not an act of wizardry. Your physician has done his share but unfortunately now is the time to buckle down and focus on healing and progressing.

    It sounds as though you did not opt for a rehab facility and instead went to home therapy. Not the best avenue of approach in my opinion but deal with what you have.

    You will only progress if you allow yourself to. Look at this as a painful, yes painful, journey to an end in sight. There will be pain...but the pain will only diminish if you 'push' yourself towards recovery. The longer you stall or push off exercise, strength training, ambulation, etc. the worse the outcome and the longer the recovery.

    Pushing yourself physically will aid in preventing scar tissue formation. Scar tissue can be more of a problem in knee recovery than the actual replacement and recovery. Some scar tissue is naturally expected...however failure to put your all into the physical rehab only builds more scar tissue and this can be more of a problem to break down...p.s. you don't want to go there!!! Trust me, i have watched a few of my co-patients have this problem.

    This is a process. It took me three months before I was able to ambulate without assistance (cane or otherwise). And then, well you guessed it, I elected to go ahead with the other knee.
    Lo and behold, I walk 2 miles 3x a week and have a normal painfree life with my knees. There will be limitations, i.e. can't jump, skip, hop, high-impact activities, but you know what, I couldn't do it before, so no loss.

    enjoy your life, put your all into it, and it will come back at you with amazing results. You only get what you put in!!!
    Good luck!!!:ange l:


    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jennifer60 View Post
    This is my 3rd week after total knee replacement surgery. I did not have any idea what was going to happen. I guess I thought I did but now I know that I have no idea.I went to the joint class before surgery, talked to different doctors, and read a lot about the surgery.I am very depressed about where I am in my recovery.I am still using the walker and having a lot of pain at night.I have PT at home right now and I dont think that is going all the well. I am at 96 on the ROM. I cannot get my surgery leg all the way striaght.We work on that each time the PT guy comes to my house.When I walk with the walker I am not walking the right way.I am trying not to get upset, but its really hard.I cry everyday and I am driving my husband nuts.I know it will get better, sometimes it just does not seem like it.

     
    Old 10-24-2011, 11:38 PM   #8
    unbendable
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee

    I had tkr 6 wks ago. I was on my walker for 4 wks. now I need my cane and still have alot of pain. My rom is only 75, I go to pt 2times a wk. thats what my ins. covers I am exercising at home. I had my 6wk follow up today and the Dr. said that I was not working hard enough and If I want to get better it's all up to me. I have tried very hard. after reading about manipulation I wonder why he didn't even mention it. I think that I have the wrong Dr. It's too late now and I am not sure what I'll do but I am not giving up.

     
    Old 10-25-2011, 03:38 AM   #9
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee

    It is too early for you to be discouraged. I am at two years and still have pain 24/7. I do think once you are able to get to an outpatient PT you will do better. I was in a rehab center for three weeks and they have the proper equipment to use. Then I had a PT come to my home three times a week for a month and found that not to be of much value. After that I went to an outpatient PT three times a week and found due to the equipment they have it is much better than the home visits I had.
    Unfortunately I happen to be one of those who did not do well with this surgery and I believe it was due to a fall I took right on the knee about eight months later and I think something got moved around in there even though the X-ray shows all is well.
    Hang in there and I'm certain you will get some relief. I, too, did not know what a difficult surgery this can be for some people. Many are so happy with their results and would do it again and others say - no way.

     
    Old 04-03-2012, 07:56 AM   #10
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee

    You sound exactly like me at 3 weeks recovery. I was depressed and making little progress. I couldn't straighten my leg and was under 90 degrees mobility.

    The PT is awful and didn't get any better for me. I eventually had to have a second procedure where the doctor rebent my knee to break scar tissue (under anethesia).
    That helped me a bit, but didn't help the PT or the depression.

    At 4 months I was still depressed, making very slow progress, and hating the PT.
    Eventually I stopped the PT and began doing my own at the YMCA. I felt in better
    control of my body and this lifted my spirits, even though I wasn't a poster child for successful knee replacemnet. I lost 20 pounds, the greatest thing that happened. I wasn't horribly overweight, but every pound you lose is a good one, LOL.

    At 6 months I started feeling myself again, thank god. Now I am 8 months into recovery. I still have less than 120 degrees mobility, but no pain upon walking and my leg eventually straightened out all by itself.
    I still go to the YMCA and use the elliptical and weight machines.

    I've kept most of the weight off. I just gained back about 7 pounds and I am trying to get control of it.

    Don't listen to people who say the were "doing just fine" at one month out of surgery. I have learned that many people heal more slowly by reading this board. I wish I had found it earlier, (or before), my surgery.

    Take one day at a time . . .I pray that you will be feeling better within the next month.

    Pam

     
    Old 04-03-2012, 11:50 PM   #11
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee

    Jennifer,

    I would to hear all about your experience (like you trying to learn everything I can about surgery before I have it). Y can send privatemessage me if you would like. I am 53 yrs old and about 7 weeksfrom tkr.I would lovetoknow of any surprises that you didn't know about, did you have blood transfusion, did os control your pain well, anything that you think will help me.
    I amsurethat you'll continue toimprovee steady.
    take care
    bri

     
    Old 02-06-2013, 06:38 PM   #12
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee

    Oh, I feel for you. I am four months out from my TKR. It does get better! If your pain med doesn't help, or gives you bad side effects, ask to try a different one. I went thru four before I found one that worked for me.

    As everyone is saying, use your pain med, and keep doing the exercises. Get a qualified therapist you like and share your recovery goals. Do what he/she says between appointments. It will get better and better, you will feel better, and the depression will pass. This board was great for me for support and encouragement. I also did a lot of pre surgery research, and still, was shocked at how painful it was and how awful I felt, for weeks. But I feel much better and now walk pain free, and am working hard to get enough range to ride a bike, which is more range than I had pre surgery.

    Keep the faith. Prayer helps too!


     
    Old 02-07-2013, 11:44 AM   #13
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    Re: 3rd week Total knee

    Dear Jennifer:

    I did a lot of research before the surgery, I thought I would be fine by 6 weeks. I wasn't. I also experienced a lot of depression. I had a lot of pain that the medicine did not help during therapy. I had a very good surgeon, everyone says, so I have to say that I was not in the percentage of people who seemed to get over this quickly. Who knew?

    I am now a year and a half past surgery. I can walk without pain, but never achieved enough bend in my knee to "ride a bike". I work out every day at the gym and keep my knee mobile.

     
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