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TKR Allin1's left knee TKR

allin1

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I thought I would track my recovery from having my left knee replaced. I suffered a full dislocation of my left knee as a 16 year old, complete with crushing my Popliteal artery. It's been painful on and off the last 10 years, and then it become painful all the time due to osteoarthritis. During the consult with orthopedic surgeon, he asked what took me so long?
Surgery is on 5/20. I'll try to come back and update as soon as I can after the surgery.
 
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Jaycey

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@allin1 Welcome to BoneSmart! Great that you don't have long to wait for your op. I wish you all the best on the day. We will be here to support you.

I'll leave your recovery guidelines here for you:
Knee Recovery: The Guidelines
1. Don’t worry: Your body will heal all by itself. Relax, let it, don't try and hurry it, don’t worry about any symptoms now, they are almost certainly temporary

2. Control discomfort:
rest
ice
take your pain meds by prescription schedule (not when pain starts!)​

3. Do what you want to do BUT
a. If it hurts, don't do it and don't allow anyone - especially a physical therapist - to do it to you​
b. If your leg swells more or gets stiffer in the 24 hours after doing it, don't do it again.​

4. PT or exercise can be useful BUT take note of these

5. At week 4 and after you should follow this Activity progression for TKRs

6. Access these pages on the website

The Recovery articles:
The importance of managing pain after a TKR and the pain chart
Swollen and stiff knee: what causes it?
Energy drain for TKRs
Elevation is the key
Ice to control pain and swelling
Heel slides and how to do them properly
Chart representation of TKR recovery
Healing: how long does it take?

Post op blues is a reality - be prepared for it
Sleep deprivation is pretty much inevitable - but what causes it?

There are also some cautionary articles here
Myth busting: no pain, no gain
Myth busting: the "window of opportunity" in TKR
Myth busting: on getting addicted to pain meds

We try to keep the forum a positive and safe place for our members to talk about their questions or concerns and to report successes with their joint replacement surgery.

While members may create as many threads as they like in a majority of BoneSmart's forums, we ask that each member have only one recovery thread. This policy makes it easier to go back and review history before providing advice.
 
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allin1

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Thanks, I have read most of those over the last week. Going to quit reading recovery problem threads so I don't cancel surgery! :)
It helps to know it won't be easy, and I won't get too discouraged if it is going slow.
 

Jaycey

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@allin1 Something you need to remember - many of the members here come here due to having problems. For every member we have here with a problem, there are thousands of people who go through this recovery with no problems. They are out there living life again. Stay positive, keep posting and above all - no cancelling surgery. You will be fine!
 

Celle

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@allin1 (and his well-wishers) - Since it's still a couple of days before your surgery, I have moved some of the posts from this thread into a pre-op thread for you, so that your recovery thread doesn't get filled up with pre-op posts.

Your pre-op thread is here:
https://bonesmart.org/forum/threads/allin1s-left-knee-tkr.60209/
It would be helpful if any further pre-op posts are posted there. Thank you. :flwrysmile:
 
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allin1

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It is 3:45 AM the day after my surgery. I'm up not because of pain, just am not sleepy. I fell asleep at 10, so this is not all that unusual for me. I have a hard time sleeping more than 6 hours once I get woke up. Thought I'd update this thread. and then try to go back to sleep.
Got to the surgery center at 8 with my wife. She was able to wait in the waiting room instead of the car, as they knew my surgery was going to take a while. She was not able to go into the preop area with me, which was not a surprise. Arrived, got gowned, got my leg shaved. Surgery started at about 10:30, I'm not 100% sure how long it took, but think it was about 90 minutes. They gave me some juice and crackers, followed by some chicken and dumpling soup. I wasn't too hungry or nauseous, but ate. We were back home about 5:30 pm.
Pain was tolerable, they did give me a shot of something when I said it was getting more pain. My surgeon uses something called Exparel, which gives long term(72 hours) pain relief after surgery. I have to say, it seems like it is working. I'm taking some Tramadol on a 6 hour schedule, but haven't had to break out the Oxycodone yet. My pain level is pretty low, I'm able to get up and use the restroom ok. So far, so good!
 

JennyLynne

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Welcome to the other side!! Sounds like everything went great!

Thar 72 hour med sounds wonderful and I’m quite jealous- for me, the pain came crashing down on me after about 24 hrs.

Hope you have a restful and comfortable day!
 
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allin1

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Thanks @JennyLynne. It seems everyone is thinking once it wears off I will know it. I've been saving the Oxy for then!
Had my first visit with my PT, and it seems like we will get on great. I didn't exactly ask her philosophy, but she said we want to do enough to progress, but not so much that it is a lot of pain. She seemed to be on the BoneSmart page.
 

Ghost Rider

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It is 3:45 AM the day after my surgery. I'm up not because of pain, just am not sleepy. I fell asleep at 10, so this is not all that unusual for me. I have a hard time sleeping more than 6 hours once I get woke up. Thought I'd update this thread. and then try to go back to sleep.
Got to the surgery center at 8 with my wife. She was able to wait in the waiting room instead of the car, as they knew my surgery was going to take a while. She was not able to go into the preop area with me, which was not a surprise. Arrived, got gowned, got my leg shaved. Surgery started at about 10:30, I'm not 100% sure how long it took, but think it was about 90 minutes. They gave me some juice and crackers, followed by some chicken and dumpling soup. I wasn't too hungry or nauseous, but ate. We were back home about 5:30 pm.
Pain was tolerable, they did give me a shot of something when I said it was getting more pain. My surgeon uses something called Exparel, which gives long term(72 hours) pain relief after surgery. I have to say, it seems like it is working. I'm taking some Tramadol on a 6 hour schedule, but haven't had to break out the Oxycodone yet. My pain level is pretty low, I'm able to get up and use the restroom ok. So far, so good!
Hey allin glad it is going well for you. I'm pretty new to the forum and read your thread in the preop when I noticed yesterday was your surgery. I'm still working up to it for both my knees, I'm still looking for the right doctor. I appreciated reading about your experience.
 
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allin1

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Day 2, I think the Exparel is wearing off, had more pain this morning. My quadriceps is really sore towards the incision site, and knee is pretty sore. Got on top of the pain with some oxy, doing better now. Played cards with my sister in Wisconsin on a website called Trickster. If you like to play spades, hearts, and euchre and have remote friends or family, its a pretty good free site.
 
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allin1

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Day 3. So slept from midnight to 6 AM on a single Oxyxodone. I'll take that as a victory. I slept a couple hours on the couch before that, so got close to 8 hours. This morning it is stiff but not quite as sore. Took a tramadol just to stay on top of the pain. Back to ice and elevation!

I forgot to mention, I weighed myself and was quite surprised to learn I had gained 10 pounds? I'm sure some is retained fluid, but that really surprised me because I hadn't eaten that much and had ate much less junk than I normally would. Not sure if the new knee weighs much more than whatever they took out?
 
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sistersinhim

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I think the weight gain is mostly fluid. They pumped a lot of that into your body in the hospital and it's mostly still there probably.
 
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allin1

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Thanks for the replies. I guess it has to be fluid, but that is a lot of fluid. Somewhere north of a gallon. I was down two pounds today, so I guess I lost two pints of fluid over the last 24 hours. I do still have a fair amount of swelling in the leg and knee. Pain level is reasonable, actually on the low side compared to some I've read on here. I'm controlling it with tramadol, no oxy today. I am taking the gabapentin. I'm curious how much that helps, but unless I do another knee replacement and don't use it I don't know how we would know. And I'm not doing another knee replacement!
 

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@allin1, it seems like everything is working out good. Your knee looks much better than I would expect a couple days out of surgery. Please keep us updated with your recovery and keep up the good work, you're doing great.
 
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allin1

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Thanks @Nelly. I would agree that I feel pretty good and the knee looks pretty good, all things considered. It has a lot if bruising all along the incision site, but I suppose that is expected. I'll continue rest, elevation, and a little exercise for the next week or so.
 

Nelly

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That's awesome, you're going to do great in this recovery.
 
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allin1

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@Nelly Thanks. So far so good. Day 5, had my second PT in home. She says I'm doing well. Swelling is less, I've lost 7 pounds of water weight over the last 3 days. There is still some swelling and stiffness, especially with activity, but my range of motion and extension are pretty good. She gave me a few exercises which I will do as long as they don't increase the swelling.
Sleeping has been weird, tend to sleep 3 or 4 hours and then I know I can't sleep anymore, so get up and read or get on computer. I then sleep a couple or 3 hours during the day. I suppose once I get busier and don't sleep as much during the day, the night sleeps will get longer. Anyway, I really don't have any complaints, I think I've been on the upper end of recoveries so far.
 

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