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TKR 10 Days After Surgery Back Flaring

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Cstucky

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The PT also wants my leg perfectly straight when elevated on pillows. That’s not what I’m seeing on BoneSmart. Ugh
 

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You will find lots of conflicting information about this recovery. Since there are so many differing opinions, do what feels best for you.

I’m sorry you are in more pain now since the PT visit. Next time you will feel more confident to stand up for yourself.

At less than 2 weeks out of surgery it’s hard not to limp. As you heal and get stronger you won’t limp. Try not to worry about it. This is a long, slow recovery and yet the PTs want us to recover right now.
 
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Cstucky

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That’s what I thought! I guess I had to learn a lesson to be more assertive. Thanks for the encouragement.
 
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I’m just two days shy of three weeks with my new knee. I feel like I turned a pain corner yesterday; my knee didn’t have hours of dull aching. I feel cautiously optimistic. Fingers crossed.
I’m working with a therapist now outside the home. It’s going well and I’m essentially walking without a cane. I can be up longer without my foot feeling like it’s going to fall off my leg. The therapist worked me hard and I had concern that I’d be more stiff today, but I was better so I repeated his suggested routine today, twice. Once again I was pleased with the results.
Just one symptom had cropped up and is worrisome. When I first started to walk, both times after my therapy, and following 30 min. on the knee machine, I had the strangest sensation in my knee replacement like it was swishy, fluid moving around on the outside of my knee. If I walk around the house, the longer I walk the better it gets. Anybody have this experience with their new knee??
 

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What type of knee machine are you using?
 
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It’s called The CPM Concept, Kinetic Spectra. I’m not sure this strange feeling in the knee Is coming from that. In the night and this morning it’s happened again. It doesn’t hurt, just feels strange when I walk a bit, an unusual sensation. The incision looks good, I’m more flexible, and feel like I’m progressing, not using a cane at three weeks. Nights are still awful but the severe pain has abated. I may be hyper vigilant, which is to be expected. We don’t want anything to go wrong. Thanks! Sooo grateful for BoneSmart support
 

Jockette

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Ok, I know what type of machine you’re using. Just make sure they keep the settings low enough so that it doesn’t cause any pain.

I really think you should still use a cane, at least part of the time, especially since you have this sensation. A 3 week old knee still needs support.
I repeated his suggested routine today, twice.
What does this involve?
 

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Just one symptom had cropped up and is worrisome. When I first started to walk, both times after my therapy, and following 30 min. on the knee machine, I had the strangest sensation in my knee replacement like it was swishy, fluid moving around on the outside of my knee.
At this very early stage of recovery, 30 minutes on any machine is too long. That strange knee feeling is telling you that. Cut back the machine time to at least half of what you're doing.

I repeated his suggested routine today, twice. Once again I was pleased with the results.
It may feel good, but once a day is plenty for exercises.

It's not exercising that gets you your ROM - it's time. Time to recover, time for swelling and pain to settle, and time to heal. Your knee is capable of achieving good ROM right from the start. Its ROM will gradually increase as your knee heals and the internal and external swelling decrease.

You may be interested to know that my surgeon doesn't allow any formal PT at all for the first month after a knee replacement. He says your knee needs that time, to start on its journey of healing.
For that month, we rest, ice and elevate our leg, and walk around the house. The walking is our exercise and we increase it a little each week.

After that month, we just go to PT once every 2 weeks, where we are shown a few new exercises to do at home each day.

His patients all do well and achieve good ROM, as I did, and he hasn't had to do a manipulation to help with ROM for the past 4 years. I think that speaks for itself.
 
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Cstucky

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Thanks, Celle and Jockette,
Wise suggestions! I’ll cut back on both the machine and therapy. I’ll ice and elevate. See if it improves tomorrow! Thank you, thank you!
 
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Three weeks today since left knee replacement. And a word of encouragement for those just starting this journey. The support is here at BoneSmart. It’s a beautiful day today and I took a very short walk outside. Wow! The old pain is gone, replaced by a stiff knee And a returned-almost-to-normal walking gait. I think this is going to work.
Last night I slept for three hours and then woke at 3:30, unable to go back to sleep. BUT, it was okay. I didn’t allow myself to get frustrated, instead tried to focus on where I’ve been as opposed to how much further I have to go. Attitude makes all the difference, as I have to remind myself.
The lack of sleep is difficult, for sure, and I’d love to have input on how long this lasts on average. Or should I ask?! Yikes?! For my sis it was 5 weeks, so if that’s the case I’m well on my way. Good luck fellow knee-bees! I
 

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It’s a beautiful day today and I took a very short walk outside. Wow! The old pain is gone, replaced by a stiff knee And a returned-almost-to-normal walking gait. I think this is going to work.
This is amazing for onlly 3 weeks out! Just be sure to not overdo or your knee will yell at you.
Last night I slept for three hours and then woke at 3:30, unable to go back to sleep.
Sleep anytime and anywhere you can. I found myself napping morning and afternoon for the first month or so. Our bodies heal more while we're sleeping.
Attitude makes all the difference, as I have to remind myself.
So true. Looking at the good instead of the bad helps tremendously.
 
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Thanks for the encouragement. I’m trying hard to figure out what works and doesn’t!
 
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Really panicking tonight. Am having back spasms, this after being so pleased with my knee and really starting to see the light, other than sleeping.
I’m using a heating pad. The issue is the exercises I normally do to alleviate the spasms, gentle yoga moves on the floor, aren’t possible at present. I had therapy today and it went so well I was encouraged, the knee at 105, and nearly flat to the table.
if anyone has tips on dealing with back spasms please let me know how you handled it. Thank you!
 

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I had the same problems with back spasms. I found the Aspercreme patches work well. Plenty of ice and once I got my spasms under control I started wearing a compression belt when I am active. It has made a world of difference and was only about $20. Best wishes for a speedy recovery!
 
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Thanks for taking the time to advise! Very kind and helpful!
 
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Cstucky

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The knee is progressing nicely as I approach the one month mark since TKR on 11-5. But tonight my attitude about not bring able to sleep is pretty bad. I am discouraged. Every night it’s like 3-4 a.m. before I drop off for an hour or two or three. I’m not napping much during the day. Would love to know how some of the rest of you keep your spirits up in regard to this annoying sleep issue? I try to make a mental grateful list, to remember that this will pass but tonight I’m caught in a web of negativity. Thx for input!
 

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It isn't necessary that you sleep only at night. Sleep whenever and wherever you can. Your body needs that. I, too, had an awful time sleeping at night so I would take naps morning, afternoon and early night until I was able to sleep more at night. Staying awake during the day isn't helping your body at all. Grab that sleep when you feel sleepy. It doesn't have to be at night!
 
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Would love to know how some of the rest of you keep your spirits up in regard to this annoying sleep issue?
Accept it. Everybody complains about it, I know I did. But there's nothing you can do about it, so you might as well accept it and do the best you can.

Change comes slowly after a TKR, so there are quite a few trials and tribulations along the way where we think it's a big problem because we can't see it's getting better slowly.

For at least 2, if not 3 months my biggest issue by far was lower back and tight hamstrings. Early on it was debilitating. I thought for sure my spinal stenosis had gotten worse and was seriously considering seeing a back specialist for possible surgery. At my 8 week follow-up with my surgeon, I mentioned it to him and how the PT told me to back off on walking a mile a day on the theory that I might be doing too much too soon. The surgeon rejected that adamantly and said NO, KEEP WALKING! He showed me a couple of gentle stretches to do, and insisted I keep walking.

Well, he was right. I don't know when it happened but somewhere along the way, my back and hamstring issues went away. I guess I never had worse stenosis all along, but more likely it was from years of walking with a cane.

For something that takes at least a year to fully resolve, you can imagine how slowly things are changing/improving, so it's easy to think nothing is changing and you're not getting better.

The way I look at it is, as long as the doctor looks at the x-rays, and then tells you he doesn't see anything that concerns him, it's probably better to keep the faith and proceed day by day. The moderators offer a lot of good advice here, and in my opinion, the best advice they give is that it takes at least a year, so don't be in a hurry and don't overdo anything along the way.

I found that to be extremely helpful.
 
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Cstucky

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Thanks, Robert. My worst time is at night because of pain preventing sleep but it has only been a month. Acceptance is key, as you say. That’s a good reminder for me!
 

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