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Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Pre-Op Area' started by HazelBun, Dec 7, 2018.

  1. HazelBun

    HazelBun new member
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    Did all the appointments. Still scared about the after. I come from a military background. Who gives me the timeframe goals of what to aim for and achieve, the doctors, rehab? For myself, these are critical to know to gage progress and prevent depression.
     
  2. Jaycey

    Jaycey SUPER MODERATOR Moderator

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    @HazelBun unfortunately recovery does not happen in the straight line. Every recovery is different - even on the same person. I can give you a copy of our recovery guidelines though. Note item 5 - the activity progression. There is also a chart representation of TKR recovery. Again, these are only rough guidelines. There is no predicting how you will react to TKR.

    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
    elevate
    ice
    take your pain meds by prescription schedule (not when pain starts!)
    don't overwork

    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

    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.
     
  3. SusieShoes

    SusieShoes FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    You can get general timeframes from recovery information and threads, but no "by the numbers" specifics, because each recovery is completely unique.

    I found BoneSmart before my surgery (like you have) and went into surgery thinking, "By this date I will be (whatever activity)." Be it moving from a walker to using a cane, or walking without assistance, or going on a trip to the grocery store, I had a general idea of when I might be doing it. Standing, three hours after surgery. Check. Climbing stairs, two days after surgery. Check. Taking a longer view, I told Mr. Shoes I wouldn't be up to grocery shopping for a couple months...

    Turns out I did it in five weeks. That's what happens with general timeframes. I was right that it would be a while before I could manage such a trip (I had bilateral replacements, so that enters into it also) but I was able to do it before my prediction. That happens. It happened a lot. But so does not being able to do something as soon as predicted. My surgeon told me I would be walking on my own without a cane at 3 weeks.

    Didn't happen. I walked without a cane (outside, not around the house) at eight weeks. In the long view of things, that was just fine.

    And that's the thing. Your knee will be wherever it is in its healing, and you will be able to do whatever it is up to doing. It might be early. It might be later. The least stressful -- and most healing -- thing to do is go with it. Be happy with little victories, of which there will be many, and try not to place too many expectations on a knee that -- whatever your hopes and schedules for it -- is going to do its own thing anyway.

    When it comes to your and your knee... your knee sets the pace.
     
  4. Roy Gardiner

    Roy Gardiner FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    I do*.

    Your goal in rehab is to allow and to help your body to do its thing, healing. You allow healing by rest, relax, ice and elevation to leave the maximum amount of energy available to your body. You help it by not trying to push it along. You can't train yourself into fast rehab (it's an injury issue, not one of unfitness) but you can slow progress by overdoing things and compounding the damage.

    *Oh alright, you do. All knees are different and your progress is owned and monitored by you.
     
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  5. Celle

    Celle FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    There is no "normal" time frame for recovery from a knee replacement.
    It depends on how much work has to be done on your knee during surgery, how your body heals, and how you treat your knee.

    It is major surgery, causing a lot of trauma. In general, complete recovery takes a full year, although you will be feeling "almost better" long before that.
    It is more like a marathon than a sprint, and you'll need to pace yourself, with lots of patience.

    The first month is the hardest. It is a time for beginning healing. After that, you will gradually be able to undertake more activities.
    By about 3 months, you will be able to do most things, although you rinee will still hurt and swell if you try to do too much.

    Recovery from a knee replacement is not a straightforward, linear progression. It'smore like a roller-coaster, or "two steps forward, one step back."
    Healing: how long does it take?
     
  6. CAdesgirl

    CAdesgirl member

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    I finish my pre-op medical appointment next week (just the doctor seeing the lab results/xrays and doing an EKG). I don't have a date yet (looking like late January or early February). I can't get a date until I get medical clearance. I'm nervous, too. :groan: I am less nervous after finding this forum but there's still the unknown and "how am I going to do?". Since my last surgery (ACI not TKR) turned in 8 in 10 months, I'm doing a lot of reading the postop messages to watch those that have been through it. Seeing them go from frustrated and scared to feeling accomplished has boosted my confidence that I will make it through. I expect I'll forget all of the reading when I get to the self-pity stage :elevate: but I'm really glad to have found this group.
     
  7. Jajakio

    Jajakio graduate

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    At you presurgery consult , your doctor will lay out what he expects to happen based on his experience and your situation. Ask questions if you need more. When can I drive, go back to work,etc. After you leave the hospital you may not see the surgeon again for 4 or 6 weeks. Maybe. If you choose to do PT and start right away like most American surgeons recommend, your PT will measure your ROM and start exercises and help you set short term goals depending on how fast you are progressing. Many people here aren't fond of PT and it is your choice but I enjoyed it. It helped me keep track of where I was and I usually felt looser after a session. Your doctor may have sent his usual protocol recommendations to PT.

    As pointed out, we are all different and will progress at different rates. Just being younger or more athletic doesn't mean it goes faster necessarily. It also depends on the severity of your issues/amount of repairs needed, the skill of your surgeon and maybe just the luck of the draw. You also may progress unevenly. Really good flexion but poor extension or good pain control but inability to sleep for more than 2 hours at a time. I can promise it won't work out exactly as you imagine. But we competitive type need something push for.
     
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  8. thegoose2

    thegoose2 junior member

    Member Since:
    Jan 1, 2019
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    My LTKR is 23 Jan and I’m finding the waiting to be very difficult. Nervous about the procedure and the recovery, especially since my right knee will be done 6-12 weeks later. This forum has helped but nothing can completely relieve the stress! And like you, I like knowing what to expect and when to expect it!
    Thought it might help knowing that you are not alone. Keep me posted on your journey.
     

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