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TKR Benne68 in recovery

benne68

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Yay! Made it to the other side! RTKR surgery was yesterday morning at 11, and they moved me out of recovery into a room around 4 p.m. Didn't see the PT until 7, so decided to stay the night. Came home this morning at about 11.

Thankfully, the nerve block was only just starting to wear off, so the trip wasn't bad. Been icing and elevating since I got home, still waiting for the pain to kick in.

Happy to report that my surgeon ordered two weeks of R.I.E. (rest, elevating and icing)! Gonna try to post every day or so to share my experience -- and so I have a record for when I do the other knee!
 

NightQuilter

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Congrats @benne68 ! We'll have someone come on and move your thread to the recovery area. It sounds like you have a really smart OS prescribing the BoneSmart protocol of R.I.E. - and take your meds as prescribed so the pain does not get ahead of you. It is easier to take as prescribed vs. rather than trying to catch up to breakout pain.
 

Jaycey

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@benne68 Welcome to the other side! Here are your recovery guidelines:

Knee Recovery: The Guidelines
We are all different, as are the approaches to this recovery and rehab. The key is, “Find what works for YOU.“ Your doctor(s), physiotherapist(s) and BoneSmart are here to help. But you have the final decision as to what approach you use.

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.
 

patriciad

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Congratulations on getting through your surgery and on the path to recovery. That nerve block is great until it wears off! When you start on your pain meds also start the stool softener routine. I have found a great tasting tea called Smooth Move by Traditional Medicinals works just as well as Miralax or Milk of Magnesia. It’s available in the regular Tea section at most supermarkets. I also used ginger chews to help with the early nausea. Ice, Ice and more Ice is the best treatment for your newly operated knee. Good luck. Hope the next few days are not too tough and sending wishes for your good recovery.
 
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benne68

benne68

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Day 3: Struggling with nausea from all the meds. Just sent hubby to the store for ginger chews (thanks for that suggestion @patriciad !) and ginger tea.

Can't get over how my leg has ballooned and how hard it is to lift up -- think I now understand what's meant by "log leg!" So far, the pain has been manageable with Toradol and Tylenol, plus lots of icing and keeping it elevated.
 

eaglemom

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Whenever you feel like it you can read through the Knee Recovery Guidelines. I'm sure your doing this but make certain when you take the medication you have something in your stomach. (Unless you've been instructed otherwise.) Crackers of some sort, just something in there. Have you had Toradol before? Just curious.

As for the 'log leg' that is a perfect description. There are belts you can use to help you lift your leg. Of course a regular belt can work also. Make a loop in the belt and have that over your foot & on your heal. Then gently lift with the other end of the belt. (As an FYI - I kept the strap on my ankle so that when I wanted to move my 'log leg' I could do so without asking for help or hurting myself.)

Hopefully the nausea will dissipate soon and at least you won't be dealing with that.
 

Susie-Q

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Congratulations on making it to the other side! The first two weeks are definitely the hardest so it's good your surgeon says to rest, ice and elevate only! Trips to the bathroom and let everyone wait on you. I second the Smooth Move tea, it works wonders! Yes, make sure to eat when you take your meds. I bring sugar free pudding, apple sauce squeezes and/or sunsweet prunes back to the bedroom to take with my pills during the night.

Yes, log leg is probably from the tourniquet and it will pass!
 

Jockette

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I have found a great tasting tea called Smooth Move by Traditional Medicinals works just as well as Miralax or Milk of Magnesia. It’s available in the regular Tea section at most supermarkets.
Which flavor did you get?
 

patriciad

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@Jockette
[/QUOTE]
Which flavor did you get?

My favorite is the Peppermint - not keen on the Chamomile but like the original too. All work the same!
 
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benne68

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@eaglemom No, this is my first time taking Toradol and I'm being careful to take it with food and a full glass of water. Oddly, it seems to be the sucralfate (which is supposed to coat and protect the stomach lining from all these other drugs) that precipitates the nausea. Strange.

@Susie-Q Great suggestion -- I'll definitely take some snacks up to the bedroom tonight.

Thanks for the advice! So great to have the benefit of the experiences of so many of you who have gone before!
 

patriciad

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@benne68
You sound like you are coping well with the difficult first days. My log leg was very temporary and wore off once the nerve block completely cleared from my system. It does feel very strange and the strap idea is a good one should you need it. I didn't feel like eating much for the first few days but you do need to eat with your meds. I indulged in a little tub of readymade rice puddings or those small Activa probiotic yogurts. I also resumed my daily probiotic which hospital had been giving me during my stay.
Try to stay positive and post regularly to keep us all updated.
 

Susie-Q

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I think the only kind I've had of that tea is the original but it has a slightly minty taste. I think I'd like to try the mint next time.
 
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benne68

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@patriciad Thanks for the comment about eating. I've had no appetite since the surgery (which is really unusual for me!) but know how important it is. I also took @Susie-Q 's advice and put some snacks in the bedroom for those middle-of-the-night pills. It definitely helped. I'm feeling much less queasy today.
 

Susie-Q

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My appetite hasn't been super great either, especially soon after surgery. It seems to be getting better now. Not sure if it's from the narcotics (I'm not taking as many now) or from the surgery itself. I'm sure that's why some people say they have weight loss, no appetite and we're just not eating as much.
 

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It’s slow going those first weeks coping with medications to keep ahead of the pain, feeling slightly nauseous or just not well. It’s a major surgery and our bodies have been stressed. You are no stranger to surgeries and probably have had these symptoms before but our minds are kind and help us forget. You will feel better as the days pass. I am 10 weeks out and having an achey couple of days with swelling - it’s frustrating but I’ve probably done a bit too much. Sending healing wishes.
 
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benne68

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My appetite hasn't been super great either, especially soon after surgery. It seems to be getting better now. Not sure if it's from the narcotics (I'm not taking as many now) or from the surgery itself. I'm sure that's why some people say they have weight loss, no appetite and we're just not eating as much.
Yes, it probably is from all the drugs. I can certainly afford to lose a bit of weight, but this isn't a fun way to do it. :sick:
 
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benne68

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You will feel better as the days pass. I am 10 weeks out and having an achey couple of days with swelling - it’s frustrating but I’ve probably done a bit too much. Sending healing wishes.
Thanks for the encouragement. This community is so helpful!
 

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I don’t remember having any trouble eating after my surgery. I was actually hoping to have a loss of appetite so I could lose weight, but I didn’t. Once again, we are all different.
 

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