Lounge Doctor

Bilateral TKR Bilateral Knee Replacement-Ups and Downs

MARYCOOL

member
Joined
Mar 2, 2021
Messages
124
Age
65
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
I would go to PT and tell them this.
They put me on a tens unit (electrical stimulation) and did gentle massage, and no exercises! It helped immensely!
I hope it feels better, soon! This is a long recovery with many set backs!!
Take care!!
 
OP
OP
Taoquest

Taoquest

junior member
Joined
Apr 11, 2021
Messages
89
Age
71
Location
Virginia, USA
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
You BoneSmart People are Sage Magicians.
After 3 days of ice and elevation, I woke up and the pain was gone!! I took a much needed shower and went to PT. I told them no to exercises, and that I needed help dealing with that right knee sharp pain. He believes it is an irritated IT Band, and massaged the area, which hurt, and stretched my right leg, which felt great. He also placed this blue band along the IT nerve’s area where it hurt. I have stretching exercises for home, but I am back with Mr. Lounge Doctor and Ice machines today, as a precaution. Thank you for your input!
 

Attachments

OP
OP
Taoquest

Taoquest

junior member
Joined
Apr 11, 2021
Messages
89
Age
71
Location
Virginia, USA
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
WEEK 5- I am still in somewhat Recovery Mode- icing and elevation, but occasionally I retreat to the recliner with pillows and coffee. Had Physical Therapy today, and was taught to do stretches to help with my dreaded Right IT Band. The sharp pain only returns if I twist my knee a certain way, but it is manageable. My ROM was 100 on the right and 110 on the left. My right knee had a lot more carpentry done, so I expect it to be behind and ornery. My left knee has been a breeze so far. They really do heal on their own terms, don’t they? The Zingers keep coming, as expected.
 
OP
OP
Taoquest

Taoquest

junior member
Joined
Apr 11, 2021
Messages
89
Age
71
Location
Virginia, USA
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
Ha! I meant Recovery Mode from my first setback- an angry IT Band. I am expecting more Pot Holes on this bumpy road with new knees. Looks like I have lots of company, so I am not alone. One Day At a Time.
 

MerlinWizard

member
Joined
May 17, 2021
Messages
143
Age
53
Gender
Male
Country
United States United States
I know I am still in recovery mode.

I wonder if there was a place people could go to discuss this?

LOL...
 

Ghostpipe

senior
Joined
May 6, 2021
Messages
252
Age
65
Gender
Female
Country
Cyprus Cyprus
One day at a time is indeed the right mindset, as is not being fazed by new pains. What astounds me is that a really good day can come along out of the blue when you’re least expecting it, and a vicious new pain when you are not aware of having done anything to deserve it. I still haven’t discovered the magic formula to control what’s round the next corner, and not even when to stop doing too much.
 
OP
OP
Taoquest

Taoquest

junior member
Joined
Apr 11, 2021
Messages
89
Age
71
Location
Virginia, USA
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
WEEK 6+

I saw my surgeon for my 6+ weeks post-op appointment. He said the x-rays looked great, eye-balled my flexion as 110+ and my extension as “close enough”. My numbers will continue to go up with time. He is happy with my progress and will see me in 3 months. I can now drive and use the pool.

This is after my last PT session a week ago, when I was warned that my flexion and extension had gone down, and that I needed more PT work on my hamstrings and glutes.

Because my numbers jumped when I did NOT have PT (and instead did stretches and walking), I am taking an indefinite break from PT, and see how I do on my own. I continue to ice and elevate, and not do too much. I am a happy camper!
 
Last edited:

Ghostpipe

senior
Joined
May 6, 2021
Messages
252
Age
65
Gender
Female
Country
Cyprus Cyprus
One thing that we with bilaterals must always bear in mind is that the recovery curve is much different. We don’t have a good leg to help out, and healing two is a lot slower.
That is a difficult thing to come to terms with when most of the threads on BoneSmart are written by those with single TKRs., and we tend to compare ourselves to other posters.
I am just short of 5 months now, and thought I would be much further on, am very frustrated at how little I can do without upsetting my knees.
Of course I have made great progress with time, but it seems to me that I have been trudging along a never ending plateau.
 
OP
OP
Taoquest

Taoquest

junior member
Joined
Apr 11, 2021
Messages
89
Age
71
Location
Virginia, USA
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
@Ghostpipe- you are absolutely right. I have found that since I have no “good” knee to rely on, it is a lot easier to overwork the other operated knee. My right knee would hurt from activity, so I instinctively relied on my left. So then my left was out of commission, and I would rely on my right…sigh. I found that I am hesitant in walking longer distances, and baby both of them. The physical therapists didn’t help, especially since they rarely saw a bilateral, and pushed too hard. I have read most of the bilateral stories on BoneSmart, and that has helped. However, the learning curve is still steep, and I have adjusted my expectations to “one day at a time”. I found that my path is my own, and my progress is definitely there, just “different”. And I am glad I had both done: both knees were straightened at the same time- easier to adjust my gait to, my beginner dowagers hump is gone, no more back pain! And of course, I don’t have to go through this again.
 
OP
OP
Taoquest

Taoquest

junior member
Joined
Apr 11, 2021
Messages
89
Age
71
Location
Virginia, USA
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
On a final note, I am now retired and live in a more rural community, where there are fewer resources. My former working life was in the Baltimore-Washington area, and I still have all my medical care done at Johns Hopkins- 2 1/2 hours away. They have known me for 20 years, and corrected a couple of mistakes other doctors have made years ago. When I saw my OS two days ago, he commented that the PT’s he has specialize in bilateral recovery, since he does quite a few of them. However, I left that stressful area 8 years ago when I retired to a more peaceful life. You can’t have everything.
 
Last edited:

Ghostpipe

senior
Joined
May 6, 2021
Messages
252
Age
65
Gender
Female
Country
Cyprus Cyprus
I’d be happy to swap a pt for a peaceful rural life too. Provided one has a basic understanding of what’s inside the legs, what works what and a drive to recover, I don’t think that pt is necessary. Especially as we are blessed to have access to BoneSmart.
I too am glad that I had both done, only one recovery time to endure, and instant, compulsory adjustment to a new gait.
 
OP
OP
Taoquest

Taoquest

junior member
Joined
Apr 11, 2021
Messages
89
Age
71
Location
Virginia, USA
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
8 Weeks Out from Bilateral TKR-

This past week I’ve noticed small improvements, though some are a mystery to me.

  • I found that I can no longer sleep with my ice machines on, so now I only use ice packs 3-4 times daily.
  • When I am sitting or lying down, my knees are uncomfortable unless I elevate with my Lounge Doctor or pillows.
  • I am walking more without a cane and my gait is slowly becoming smoother. I am waiting for the Amazon Fairy to deliver my walking poles, and will report back on my progress with them.
  • The only pills I am taking are Tylenol, and any pain/discomfort is addressed with ice and elevation.
  • My right knee remains more swollen then my left.
  • My hamstrings remain tight, and I continue to apply a heating pad and stretch. My extension was not 0 before surgery, so I believe it will probably take longer to stretch those muscles out.
My knees are definitely in charge! I walk outside several times a day, but not too far. They are definitely happier with this way.

Glad to be able to drive again, and I’m looking forward to getting my hair done next week. It’s nice to start feeling ‘normal‘ again.
 
Last edited:

Jo Wo

senior
Joined
Feb 28, 2021
Messages
411
Age
64
Location
Long Island NY USA
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
I have only admiration for you bilateral folks. It is a great idea to do a weekly recap, because sometimes we don't see that we really are improving.
 

Ghostpipe

senior
Joined
May 6, 2021
Messages
252
Age
65
Gender
Female
Country
Cyprus Cyprus
Tao, seems that you are right on track.
I too have one knee that’s performed better than the other throughout, it is evening up a bit after 5 months but is still worse. It’s a bit of a nuisance, as we always want to do what the best one is ready for, not hanging back waiting for the bad one!
As for the knees being in charge, mine are still dictating everything I do. One day we will be able to go a whole day without thinking about them, can’t wait!
 
OP
OP
Taoquest

Taoquest

junior member
Joined
Apr 11, 2021
Messages
89
Age
71
Location
Virginia, USA
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
9 Weeks Out from Bilateral TKR-

Now using Walking Poles outside, which I think is great for both knees. They allow me to look ahead with a smoother gait, whereas a cane was better for one knee. I am also slowly walking farther and concentrating on heel-toe. Inside my home, I now can walk on my own, but not as smoothly as before surgery. Still have that chronic stiffness in both knees, and hope the Frankenstein movements go away soon.

A big day yesterday- had a much needed haircut and then went to Costco and zipped around on an electric cart with a basket, and my sister loaded the car. I stayed in the front seat for the hour car ride to and from. Then I iced and elevated as a precaution, and I’m OK today. Whew! The Knee-gods have spoken and they approve this time.

Amazing how the little things matter so much when on this slog towards recovery.

Will continue with weekly updates, especially for all you bilateral knee-zees out there.
 

New

OneStep App

BoneSmart #1 Best Blog

Staff online

Members online

Forum statistics

Threads
57,128
Messages
1,463,011
BoneSmarties
35,134
Latest member
Barbh1125
Recent bookmarks
0

Top Bottom