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  1. PLEASE NOTE THAT ONE RECOVERY THREAD ONLY IS PREFERRED. PLEASE DON'T START ADDITIONAL THREADS ABOUT YOUR RECOVERY.

[TKR] Turning a Corner Towards Recovery

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Recovery Area' started by juniper, Jul 2, 2012.

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  1. juniper

    juniper Senior

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    I am so glad to be off for summer vacation (I'm a teacher) and able to walk and ice/elevate, exercise, all without having to stand on my feet for eight hours. Went on vacation on June 23 for a week with my husband and son. Friends visited. I was able to walk two and a half blocks to the beach, the equivalent of three blocks to the edge of the ocean, and actually went into the ocean (with a little help from my husband, David, and son, Jody) Ah. This was why I had this surgery--so I can go into the ocean, canoe, hike in the mountains. Now I've accomplished my first goal. Soon the others will follow. I am learning patience. Slowly. Slowly. Good luck to everyone else who is healing. Navigating the site these days is a bit tricky for me. Want to contact Speccybeccy and can't seem to do this. Hi, if you happen to see this post.
     
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  2. Morning Glory

    Morning Glory Senior

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    Hi juniper,
    That's great you got to enjoy your vacation. I'm just getting to the point where I can actually get out and do things. I waited so long that I was basically housebound. My surgeon would only do one knee at a time so I was semi-housebound with the pain from left knee for another 3 months. I went grocery shopping last week for the first time in well over a year and didn't whimper once! I've hit a few clearance sales although the outlet stores did me in today. Too far between stores and way too hot!!
    Congratulations on such a wonderful recovery!
     
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  3. GrandyGirl

    GrandyGirl Graduate

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    Hi Juniper,
    I had a RTKR on Jan 13th so we're pretty much at the same point in our recovery. It is wonderful to be able to do things again without pain, but like you, I still have to take to slow and easy and be careful not to make the wrong move. We'll get there in time and look how far we've come since all that icing and elevatng and medicating!:yay:

    Dori
    aka GrandyGirl
     
  4. kneeper

    kneeper Forum Advisor

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    great report!
     
  5. Janet2012

    Janet2012 Don

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    I'll try to call her for you - speccybecky; someone said hello above!
     
  6. LinCan

    LinCan Junior Member

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    Hi Juniper! Congratulations on getting back into the " swim" of things! I hope that happens for me too in the not so distant future.

    Linda
     
  7. speccybecky

    speccybecky Sr Bonesmartie

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    Hi juniper, can't think why I wouldn't get your messages. I am to go back to work in 2 weeks. Glad you are enjoying your holiday
     
  8. juniper

    juniper Senior

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    Nancy, I think I wasn't actually logged in. Couldn't figure out the new format when I tried to post a message to you. Good luck returning to work. What do you do? Will you be able to take breaks if you need to? Are you walking fairly normally now. Not yet for me, but I am slowly and steadily improving, especially since summer is here and I am no longer working except at my own pace--reading things for school, meeting with colleagues occasionally, sifting through and tossing old files. And, of course, elevating, icing, resting, stretching. The good life.
     
  9. speccybecky

    speccybecky Sr Bonesmartie

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    I work in a bank and will be going back on a phased return. In theory I should be able to get up and walk if I stiffen but in practice is more difficult if we have a queue of customers. Sometimes I walk better than others although I don't think I'm limping now. Knee gets hot and feels awkward but not sure it's obvious to onlookers. I can't run and get pain across knee cap going up and down stairs (this is a new pain!?). I am expecting it to be aching at the end of the day and the ice will be out again!
     
  10. juniper

    juniper Senior

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    Learning patience. I get so frustrated that I can't walk without so much stiffness. I chalk it up to returning to work at five weeks, overly aggressive, not icing and elevating nearly enough once I was back at work. But there's a nagging voice--maybe something's wrong...adhesions, knee too big...and I start wondering if it will ever get to the point one PT I visited said would happen around six months: "There will be times around six months when you'll be walking and you won't be thinking about your knee." I think because 54referee said that he lost his limp at five months, I would too. I know. I know. Everyone's healing is different. I am pretending I'm at three months since I probably lost time by returning to work, and then packing up my classroom...more than sixty cartons and way too much time on my feet. If I had it to do over, I would have taken three months off, and dealt with the guilt rather than the swelling.

    Yesterday, I hung out at the pool because of the heat...felt great. Even jumped into the water, although I was a little nervous. My knee was fine with that.

    Someone mentioned that the elliptical is good for ROM. I loved the workout I got. First time I've broken a sweat since the night before surgery. But my knee didn't like the fact that I stayed on for twenty minutes. I'm using it, but for a shorter time. Figuring out what works for each of us is so tricky. Spent an hour icing and elevating. Now it's time for a few stretches and a bit of cleaning. I am becoming very relaxed about dust bunnies. So I'll just take care of a few of them.
     
  11. speccybecky

    speccybecky Sr Bonesmartie

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    Juniper, stop stressing....jump in the pool! 20 mins on elliptical ? Sounds like you're doing a lot. I am walking pretty well but now have pain back behind kneecap on stairs. I think I overdid the leg press at gym....at least I hope thats all it is! I certainly can't do eliptical at all. Like you say, we're all different. I'm also going to have to practice wearing heels for son's wedding. I got new shoes!
     
  12. 1ELISEA

    1ELISEA Forum Advisor

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    Great reports on where you are at in the healing process Juniper!
    Sounds like you are enjoying your summer off doing things you couldn't do last summer!
     
  13. juniper

    juniper Senior

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    Thanks for the message, Elise. Actually, except for two bad incidents: one, hiking 4 miles over three to six foot drifts into our extended family cabin, and two, getting knocked over by a wave, I was great last summer. I guess the knee was ready to go, though, because it began to lock in September...and that, not constant pain, was what led me to get my knee replaced. I had moments of pain, and I couldn't walk down hill or downstairs, but I was still doing elliptical, walking a three mile route a couple times a week. It's different for me because the swelling feels like far more discomfort )pain, really) than I had before the surgery. Only very occasionally was I in real pain. I am resting a lot more now. And I am certain this will make a difference. I hope it's helpful for people who have just had surgery. Take it easy at first and you are more likely to heal sooner. And even then, each of us heals differently. I didn't really understand just HOW MUCH icing, elevating and resting would be involved. I didn't get how gentle the stretches needed to be either. Still learning. How are you, having had surgery so much more recently?
     
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  14. speccybecky

    speccybecky Sr Bonesmartie

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    Juniper, I d agree with you. My knee hurt before surgery but not constant agony, some days worse than others. I think I swapped one pain for another at first , temporarily , I hope! I think it made recovery. A bit harder to take as I didn't instantly have relief from the agony others have? But we're getting there now and maybe were lucky we were able to have it done before getting to that stage
     
  15. juniper

    juniper Senior

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    Good point, Nancy, we do have recent memory of what we're hoping for knee wise. Icing away right now. How often, and for how long do you ice at this point--5 1/2 months out? And are you taking any meds at all for pain and swelling? I still am, although less than before.
     
  16. speccybecky

    speccybecky Sr Bonesmartie

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    I don't ice as often as I did but my knee still gets hot and the ice pack is still in the freezer and I do use it when it gets sore and hot. My husband thinks I can't be needing it now! He has been so great during this but I think he thinks that as I look well I should be better now. Some days I don't take any pills but other days it hurts and I take Paracetomal and Ibuprofen as per bonesmart cocktail. I think I might take them next week on work days...whether I need it or not?
     
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  17. juniper

    juniper Senior

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    Nancy, the pro-active use of meds sounds smart to me. Then see how you feel if you space them out a bit more. I still take something some time in the morning when the swelling and stiffness start, although I always start by icing. I got a new ice pack that wraps around my leg and I like it a lot. Now I have that, and then the smaller packs for in between times. I think, because I went back to work so early, and wasn't able to be consistent about icing or to remember to take meds on a schedule, I am making up for lost time. I now do only ten minutes on the bike and ten minutes on the treadmill. Otherwise, I stretch (bend) my knee and lift an ankle weight to build quad strength. I am hopeful because I see tiny bits of improvement. I may go back to PT because I have strain in my hip likely due to poor gait. I'll just do it so that the exercises are more of a habit. Let me know how work goes.
     
  18. speccybecky

    speccybecky Sr Bonesmartie

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    I've got a wraparound that takes gel inserts , I have 2 inserts. I can't use them at work as we don't have a freezer so I bought some of those chemical things that go cold when squeezed.
    I get bored on the bike but quite enjoy a walk if the weather s nice
     
  19. juniper

    juniper Senior

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    I wish I could see you walking. I walk a bit, but it's hard because my knee is so stiff, and my gait is off. Still limping. I can do about four blocks, that's it. But today I did the bike for quite a while without pain. Strange how we each are so different. Good luck going back to work. Is it Monday?
     
  20. speccybecky

    speccybecky Sr Bonesmartie

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    Thanks, it's Tuesday for work.
    The most I have walked is 2 miles and its stiff when I start but wears off after a bit. I'm knackered when I get back but that's more stamina than knee. Still get the pain mid kneecap going up and down stairs but am more convinced it is something at the gym that is aggravating it. will try to pin down what and give it a miss. I thought I wasn't limping but met someone the other day who picked up i had a knee problem straight off so maybe I am
     
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