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TKR Carole’s recovery thread

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Carole4815

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I hope you can get that tooth taken care of.
Thanks. My dentist will do what he can tomorrow morning at 8:30. I had to go dig up an alarm clock and set it but my sweetie and I will be there on time.

I was thinking..... maybe this tooth infection explains why I have been shivering at 78 degrees in the house, and then not. And also maybe it partly explains why I have had such trouble regaining stamina. I do feel better since I took the antibiotic a couple of hours ago.
 

Jockette

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You are still very early in recovery and most of your stamina/energy is going towards healing your knee.

Most of us are extra cold for a while after this surgery.

I really doubt either is due to your toothache, which I hope feels better quickly!
 
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Carole4815

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You are still very early in recovery and most of your stamina/energy is going towards healing your knee.

Most of us are extra cold for a while after this surgery.

I really doubt either is due to your toothache, which I hope feels better quickly!
Oh good!!! I hope you are right. Hey I learned something! I had no idea that anybody else was ever shivering after this surgery. :snork:
 

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I had no idea that anybody else was ever shivering
Oh, yes! I am usually very warm, I’m the only one in my senior bowling league who wears sleeveless tops all winter to bowl in, and I was very cold for a while after surgery.
 
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Carole4815

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Thanks, NewlyBionic, Sisterinhim, and Jockette. I don't feel as upset about my tooth as I did a few posts back. This tooth will not infect and mess up my nice new baby knee! My dentist won't let that happen. Anyway, just wanted to say that I appreciate your posts calming me down.
 

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I told him about my toothache that developed during the past week, and how I think it may be an abscessed tooth. He put me on amoxycillin (antibiotic), prescribed more pain medicine, and wants me to see my dentist about it ASAP, to make sure my knee does not become infected
The threat of a knee infection because of an issue in your mouth isn’t as great as you think, please try not to worry. @Jamie can explain it better than I can.
 
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Carole4815

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The threat of a knee infection because of an issue in your mouth isn’t as great as you think, please try not to worry. @Jamie can explain it better than I can.
I have read those papers and know what you are talking about. I guess I would just rather go with my surgeon's opinion on this, especially when it is the more conservative approach. You're right; he didn't seem too worried as long as I took an antibiotic and saw my dentist right away.
 

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I'm glad you've read the studies that show there is rarely a connection between dental infections and your knee. But obviously it's good to get to your dentist soon to get it resolved.

Also the PT guy was very encouraging and said I had improved a lot. He agrees that I do need to work on my stamina, but he says that my energy has been going into healing, and stamina will come back in time.
Your therapist sure gave you conflicting information here. It's true that your energy in these early days of recovery goes toward healing. But a person doesn't "work on" stamina. The harder you might try to "work" on it, the more tired you'd become. Just be sure you're getting plenty of rest for now and the stamina will come back later.
 
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Carole4815

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Your therapist sure gave you conflicting information here. It's true that your energy in these early days of recovery goes toward healing. But a person doesn't "work on" stamina. The harder you might try to "work" on it, the more tired you'd become. Just be sure you're getting plenty of rest for now and the stamina will come back later.
Perhaps I phrased it in a confusing way?

I think that by "working on" my stamina, he did not mean physically working out or pushing. He meant trying to sense what is too much for me to do, and what is not, so that I didn't deplete my stamina. Doing what I can do, but learning to stop before overdoing. At least that was the sense of it that I got.

I told him how I overdid it by doing a load of laundry (washer, dryer, putting away), and lost my stamina for a couple of days. And then I told him how a few days later, I avoided overdoing by quitting after I put it in the washer (I let my sweetie put it in the dryer and put it away). He thought that was a good approach; to do things if I felt I could, but to be careful and not overdo. I didn't lose more stamina that way.
 
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My dentist was leaving on a two week vacation early this morning, but said he would delay his departure to see me if I could get there by 8:30. So I saw him bright and early this morning.

Turns out it wasn't an abscess after all!!! It sure felt like one. Basically one of my wisdom teeth broke through (despite my old age) and now it needs to be pulled. My dentist does not pull teeth, so he contacted the oral surgeon who did my dental implants. He can pull it, but the standard procedure (here, anyway) is for the orthopedic surgeon to decide on the best timing for that since he is in charge of the knee. So, the oral surgeon will talk to the orthopedic surgeon and when the timing is worked out, they will call me and I'll make an appointment to have my wisdom tooth extracted.

I didn't sleep for even a minute all night. That was partly due to nerves, but also I took no pain pills because I didn't know if that would interfere with the dental diagnosis. It turned out that the pain was bearable using just the ice machine, although it was enough that I couldn't sleep like that.

What a recovery rollercoaster ride. I started some laundry and also I predict that I am going to try to nap a little today. I'm shivering again.

But hey, I should clarify - - those reading this overly dramatic tale of woe need to know that so far, despite everything, there hasn't been a single day when I had the slightest regret about my TKR surgery. It is worth encountering a few minor bumps in road, when I think of how much brighter my future is becoming, day by day, with my new knee.
 

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Thanks for clarifying, Carole. You definitely have the right approach. :thumb:

there hasn't been a single day when I had the slightest regret about my TKR surgery.
THIS is the statement that really makes me smile. I'm so happy for you and you will get through all these little bumps in the road.
 

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I’m glad you didn’t have an abscess. Hopefully that pesky wisdom tooth that chose to arrive now is taken care of soon so you have no more worries.
 

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Are you sure you're not 17 instead of 71? That's when wisdom teeth are more likely to come through.:heehee: At least your pain pills should cover it and your faithful Sweetie will take care of you. When I had two of mine pulled, I went home and crashed. I slept for 8 hours and when I woke up I had drooled and my hair was stuck to my face. I had to buy a new pillow. I hope the surgeons get together and get you taken care of soon.
 

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You have the best attitude!! I'm glad its nothing scary & all will be well :loveshwr:
 

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I know it's giving you pain, but I'm glad the dental problem was a wisdom tooth - no longer the slight risk of infection from an abscess.

I hope your surgeon and the oral surgeon can soon decide on a suitable time for removing the wisdom tooth.
 
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I slept much of yesterday away, and when awake was feeling a bit grumpy and distressed about my knee and dental situation (but STILL not regretting my TKR for an instant! :snork: Just feeling a bit out of sorts).

But then for whatever reason, my pain levels both from tooth and from knee dropped considerably. I slept deeply last night and had fun adventure dreams (of things other than knees), with no discomfort and NO pain meds! I know that addiction to opiates is not likely but fears are not always logical; anyway I think I proved to myself that I can go for 72 hours with no pain meds (since I purposely didn't have any the night before, due to not wanting my pain to be disguised when I saw the dentist for a diagnosis). 72 hours opiate free and no problem sleeping. Pretty good, huh. :) That has lifted my spirits. Maybe this wisdom tooth will settle down and not need to be pulled right away. OK, one can dream.

I have been doing a lot of icing and also emailing back and forth with my older brother. I didn't tell him about my TKR surgery until after it was done, because I was determined to do this and I didn't want to be dissuaded from having it done (and I do regard his opinion highly). Besides, everything happened so fast.

He reminded me that our mother (long dead) was told by her doctor that she needed knee replacements back in 1989, when she was 80 years old. She refused thinking that the good years after surgery would not be long enough (at her age) to make up for the difficult surgical recovery period that most of us here are going through right now. It was probably even more difficult back then. But she should have got new knees, because she lived for another 18 years.

So anyway my brother is thrilled that I decided to go ahead and have this done now "while I am still young". Young? :unsure: Who woulda thought.... :rotfl: Anyway it's nice to know that he thinks my TKR was a good idea and that he thinks I am still young since I am "only" age 71. :egypdance: He also thinks the second TKR is a great idea as well, when the time comes to have it done.
 
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It's nice to hear how encouraging your brother is about your tkr. Is he younger or older than you? Your mom should have had it done. We've had several on here in the eighties and they did really well. Of course, things were quite different in '89. My OS told me I needed tkr when I was in my 50s, but I elected to wait. I'm glad I did. Things are improving every year with this surgery.
 
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Thanks, sistersinhim. He is the younger of my two older brothers, 75 years old. He is a very smart guy, and I am glad that he approves of my decision.
 

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I'm so glad your pesky tooth turned out to be a simple break and not anything really awful like an abscess. What a relief. It was kind of your dentist to fit you in that morning.
 

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My mother had both her knees replaced when she was in her eighties - one when she was 82 and one when she was 84. She made a good recovery each time.
She wasn't very mobile after her TKRs, but she hadn't been very mobile before them, either. The most important result of her TKRs was that she lived until she was 89, without the pain of arthritic knees.
 

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