Lounge Doctor

Bilateral TKR Bilateral Knee Replacement-Ups and Downs

FCBayern

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Thanks FCBayern, I may still be able to climb that ladder back onto the boat.
Oh I have no doubt you will climb that ladder again @Taoquest, and pain free! But if you go at less than a full year after recovery, don’t feel bad about having someone pull the BCD and tank in for you. I don’t think that’s admitting you can’t do it; it’s just being smart enough to let you knee heal completely before really testing it.
 
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Taoquest

Taoquest

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8 Days Out - my visiting nurse came by today to change to Aquacel bandages, and I took a photo of the incisions. They are internal stiches, and a larger photo is in the Knee Scars - Badges of Honor section. Obviously, my right knee had more work done and is more swollen than the other. Ambulating well.
I have a question for all you wonderful people. I love my 2 Berg ice machines, but even with 4 frozen bottles inside each, my sister is running to the store for ice (we are using 30 pounds a day (mind you, I have ice on 24/7, with no burns.). We are looking at countertop ice machines, advertised to make up to 26 pounds a day. Any advice?
 

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Jockette

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I did not have an ice machine, but that sounds like a lot of extra ice, and I don’t recall other members with ice machines buying extra ice. Do you think your machine is working appropriately?
 

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I found that turning it off completely when not in use made the ice last much longer.
 
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Taoquest

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I do disconnect the power and remove the pad for at least an hour between uses, so we can check the skin. We then empty, add water to fill line, then about 5 lbs. of ice, per Breg instructions. Maybe I am using the Machines too much?
 

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Would you like to change your thread title to see if you get more responses to the ice machine issue? We can always change it again once you’re satisfied with the discussion.
 

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I had a tabletop ice machine. It was the BEST investment for me! We ran it much of the time and always had plenty of ice. Didn’t use it for the first knee since it had been packed away. The difference was marked. Made life much easier for us.
 
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Taoquest

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I’ve decided to wait until my appointment with the surgeon on Wednesday, when I can find out how long I will use the ice machines. In the meantime, I will also look at table ice machines as suggested, as I can use it later for my RV. Thanks everyone.
 

FCBayern

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I along with many others here used frozen water bottles @Taoquest. They last longer than regular ice and I just kept enough in the freezer to always have a frozen group waiting. I used my ice machine 24/7 unless I was venturing out from my recliner. I found 4 sets of frozen bottles would do well for 24 hours. Always a frozen set waiting.
 

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The ice machine(s) are a great concept, but it's effectiveness has always been short lived for me, plus the cold effect was lacking. I used FlexiKold ice packs after my LTKR in December, 2019.

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sistersinhim

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I also used a circulating ice water machine 24/7 for the first month or so. I used frozen water bottles and plastic bowls of block ice that lasted a long time. I had a tabletop ice-making machine that melted quickly to give me that nice cold water quickly. I don't believe just the ice-making machine alone will be enough. You need to have frozen bottles of water, too.
 

GiantFinnegan

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The ice machine(s) are a great concept, but it's effectiveness has always been short lived for me, plus the cold effect was lacking. I found these ice packs after my LTKR in December, 2019.
Ooh, thanks @Jewlz1, my PT had those and I forgot to ask where to get them! It was so nice, thin, and super cold.
 

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Also:
How To Make A Flexible Ice Pack
The key to making an ice pack that stays flexible is alcohol. Rubbing alcohol has a freezing point between -26 and -58 degrees F, depending on the percentage of isopropyl alcohol to water, making it virtually impossible to freeze in a home freezer. When it is combined with water that will freeze at 32 degrees F, the result is a slushy, partially frozen mixture that can be frozen and reused again and again.

I use a 2-1 ratio of water to rubbing alcohol. You can adjust the ratio to suit your needs. More alcohol will make the ice pack slushier. Less alcohol will make it firmer.

Ice Pack Supplies
Ice Pack Instructions
  1. Measure 1 cup alcohol and 2 cups water into a freezer bag
  2. Remove as much air as possible and seal
  3. Place bag with mixture into the second bag by inserting it zipper side first
  4. Remove as much air as possible and seal
  5. Freeze and use as needed
For vacuum bag option: after step 2, place your bag with mixture into a vacuum bag that has been cut to the appropriate size. Follow the directions for your vacuum sealer and seal the bag. This is the best way for preventing leaks and is recommended if kids will be using them.
 
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Taoquest

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Thanks. I already have gel packs for my knees that I plan to use for the car trip next week to my surgeon’s office for the 2-week checkup. We had been using 4 small water bottles + ice + water to the fill line in each Berg, per THEIR instructions. My sister has now managed to shove 4 16 oz. bottles and that has helped a lot. I can now go 12 hours, so we have cut the ice use in half.
This journey sure has a lot of trial and error- thanks everyone for your helpful input. I shudder to think how poorly this could have gone without BoneSmart.
 

Jewlz1

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Thanks. I already have gel packs for my knees that I plan to use for the car trip next week to my surgeon’s office for the 2-week checkup. We had been using 4 small water bottles + ice + water to the fill line in each Berg, per THEIR instructions. My sister has now managed to shove 4 16 oz. bottles and that has helped a lot. I can now go 12 hours, so we have cut the ice use in half.
This journey sure has a lot of trial and error- thanks everyone for your helpful input. I shudder to think how poorly this could have gone without BoneSmart.
You've got your icing down to a science! Good luck with your 2 week post-op. I go for mine this upcoming Tuesday.
 
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Taoquest

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Thanks @Sisterpat. I can use this homemade ice pack with a Velcro strap, for the inbetween times. @Jewlz1 My brother gave me two commercial gel packs with Velcro, which last about an hour, and I will use these for my car trip next week.
 
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Taoquest

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Well, this is the 10th day after 2 knee replacements. My left knee has given me little pain or swelling. Life would be sweet except…for my right knee- lots of swelling and pain. I know the surgeon did this one first, as it was in more dire need- more spacers, more straightening. My gait and posture are now straight, and my muscles are trying to adapt to the new arraignment. And the back pain and my leaning forward are gone, so I’ll happily soldier on. I have almost weaned myself off Oxycodone, but will save a couple for breakthrough pain with that rascally right leg. It’s the area right above the kneecap that hurts, especially when I stand at first, and then it lessens the more I walk. I will continue to lie with my lounge doctor and my Ice machines. Getting up frequently to walk, go to the bathroom,etc. My sister says I am more lucid without the narcotic so I am definitely making progress. Now we’ll see what the surgeon says on Wednesday.
 

Sisterpat

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Great progress really. Isn’t it amazing how 2 knees can react so differently??
 
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Taoquest

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Had my 2-week check-up today at my surgeon’s office in Columbia, Maryland. It’s a 3.5 hour trip, so I was across the back seat with a pillow under my butt, another pillow against the door for my back, the Lounge Doctor for my legs, and ice on my knees. My sister and I stayed at a hotel the night before and THAT was a story in itself. My ROM is 90’ on my right, and 95’ on the left, so he is pleased. I had been taking Oxycodone with an anti-nausea pill, but had stopped that and was taking Vicodin for pain as needed. Glad my Vicodin was renewed. I come back in 4 weeks for x-rays.I am surprised my incisions look so good at 2 weeks, and I will post a photo on the Badges of Honor section shortly.
 

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