Lounge Doctor

TKR Does the pain ever go away?

RebelMomma

new member
Joined
Oct 4, 2020
Messages
4
Age
58
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
Hi, I had my knee surgery done in June of 2020. From that time until the present I have never gone a day without pain. My new knee is some foreign object in my leg that causes me to limp (I think the new knee leg is now shorter than my other leg.), feel like I'm going to fall (it sometimes feels like my knee is going to bend backwards) and generally makes my life miserable. Some stats on me, I'm 57 , height is 5'8 and weigh about 290lbs. Because I am a single parent I do admit that I did not have a lot of down time. I was back up cleaning house and serving meals right away. I had no physical therapy right after the operation because my insurance wouldn't pay for it and I could not afford it. A few months after surgery I was able to get 12 weeks PT but didn't really do much. Don't get me wrong, I'm able to walk, dance around a little and have managed to even get up and down stairs and up and down off of the floor. It's a sturdy block of wood but it's also extremely painful doing these things. I have lived a rough life and have a high tolerance for pain but is this normal to feel like this? I've seen my surgeon and he says there is nothing wrong with the knee but he would say that right? Has anyone else had any of the above problems? Any suggestions?
 

Jobey68

new member
Joined
Jan 25, 2021
Messages
2
Age
52
Gender
Female
Country
United Kingdom United Kingdom
Hi, I had my first TKR in Nov 2019 and my experience was it took a full 12 months before It felt like it belonged to me. I had good ROM and no major pain after the initial few months but it still felt like a lump of wood rather than my leg and I also had the feeling it was going to buckle which is all normal but it does get better over time- my surgeon told me it can take 18-24 months to be the best it will be and I am finding that to be accurate, it’s still improving all the time and I have very little issue with it now 15 months on.
I will add that I didn’t do any excessive PT just kept bending and straightening it and taking regular walks and stepping up and down on the bottom step of the stairs.
I am now 6 weeks post second TKR and doing well and following the same recovery again as I did first time, nothing excessive just keeping it moving, you are still healing and it’s normal for it to still feel like this 8 months in and I’m sure you will find it’s continues to improve over the next 6 months.
all the best.
 

Tykey

big-cheese
Joined
Apr 25, 2010
Messages
4,610
Age
73
Location
Sheffield, uk
Your limping isnt helping.
Is the limp causing the pain, or the pain causing the limp?.
Because you mentioned that your leg feels shorter makes me suspect that walking better would be a great help. Remember to heel and toe exactly the same with both legs.
There are many youtube videos which can help you to see if this is the problem, and what to do about it.
Good luck, dont despair, it still is early days.
 

Birdgirl

junior member
Joined
Jan 17, 2021
Messages
39
Age
62
Gender
Female
Country
Canada Canada
I have to get my other knee done but when I was at my Chiropractor he mentioned we should take xrays to check hips (leg length) to possibly adjust my orthotics. I will probably wait for other knee to be done. You mention you feel one leg is shorter then other. Are orthotics an option for you? You can get some at a drug store and put in the shorter leg shoe to see if it makes a difference.
 

RIT387

junior member
Joined
Feb 15, 2021
Messages
47
Age
59
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
I'm only 11 weeks post TKR on my left knee and wonder the same about pain and aching. I too felt my left leg is 1/2 inch longer now and was limping and chiropractor confirmed (Surgeon felt is was alignment related but I didn't get any x-rays). It helped to put Spenco inserts that add height to new shoes but gait still feels new/off. I find I still have to ice after any walk, activity and take tylenol. I'm also trying to eat healthy and anti-inflammatory.

I found this post about wet heat really helpful for at night when I can't sleep due to aching https://bonesmart.org/forum/threads/night-pain-solutions-using-moist-heat-and-clingfilm.12794/
 
OP
OP
R

RebelMomma

new member
Joined
Oct 4, 2020
Messages
4
Age
58
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
Thank you for your responses. I will check about the inserts and I'm glad to get a response from someone who has been recovering for a longer time. It really helped knowing that better days maybe ahead. :)
 

Jockette

SENIOR FORUM ADVISOR
Senior Forum Advisor
Joined
Aug 29, 2017
Messages
20,715
Age
65
Location
Delaware
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
Hi and Welcome!

Please tell us the exact date of your surgery and which knee it is and we’ll make a signature for you. :flwrysmile:
I'm able to walk, dance around a little and have managed to even get up and down stairs and up and down off of the floor. It's a sturdy block of wood but it's also extremely painful doing these things.
This is a long recovery, as long as an average of a full year, or more for some of us (me!) for complete healing. You will continue to improve over time. You’re doing well to be able to do the things you mention. Try to hang in there and do things as you are able.

Even though it’s been a while since your surgery, I will leave you our Recovery Guidelines. Each article is short but very informative. Following these guidelines will help you have a less painful recovery.

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
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

6. Access to 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 the 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 the member’s history before providing advice, so please post any updates or questions you have right here in this thread.
 
OP
OP
R

RebelMomma

new member
Joined
Oct 4, 2020
Messages
4
Age
58
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
Hi, thanks for the info, I have to be honest I've been lurking awhile and have been reading those articles. Lots of great information there!
I'd love to have a signature created for me.
My date of operation was June 2nd, 2020. It is my left knee.

Thank you
 

Jockette

SENIOR FORUM ADVISOR
Senior Forum Advisor
Joined
Aug 29, 2017
Messages
20,715
Age
65
Location
Delaware
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
You now have a signature!

Hang out here with us,
Bonesmart has a wealth of advice, information and support.
We will offer helpful suggestions, :idea:

Cheer your accomplishments :happydance:

And send hugs when you are feeling down. :console2:

Best wishes!
 

TKRsharon

member
Joined
Dec 1, 2020
Messages
139
Age
66
Location
Long Island, New York
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
I am going to the OS tomorrow for a 4 month check. I am going to ask him the same question - when will it just feel like a normal leg? Although I feel much better than I did, I wonder if the day will ever come that I will be able to go on a trip, walk through NYC or even have a day of shopping, ( all after the pandemic, of course), without having to be close to ice and worrying about pain.
 
OP
OP
R

RebelMomma

new member
Joined
Oct 4, 2020
Messages
4
Age
58
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
You now have a signature!

Hang out here with us,
Bonesmart has a wealth of advice, information and support.
We will offer helpful suggestions, :idea:

Cheer your accomplishments :happydance:

And send hugs when you are feeling down. :console2:

Best wishes!
Thank you for all the help.
 

Jockette

SENIOR FORUM ADVISOR
Senior Forum Advisor
Joined
Aug 29, 2017
Messages
20,715
Age
65
Location
Delaware
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
You’re very welcome!
 

FCBayern

FORUM ADVISOR
Forum Advisor
Joined
Oct 11, 2011
Messages
1,620
Age
61
Location
Roatan
Gender
Male
Country
Honduras Honduras
My recovery from TKR was one of the slower ones @RebelMomma, but I couldn't be happier today with my result. My knee continued to gain ROM throughout my second year of recovery, and while I would be more than happy with my current result I believe I'm still seeing increasing ROM. This truly is a 12-18 month recovery, with improvements available even after that time frame. It's not easy to be patient, but it WILL pay off.
 

Jobey68

new member
Joined
Jan 25, 2021
Messages
2
Age
52
Gender
Female
Country
United Kingdom United Kingdom
I couldn’t agree more @FCBayern. There is so much emphasis on missing the boat with ROM in the early weeks if you don’t push things but 2 knees in I can say with confidence this really isn’t the case! Take things slow and steady, yes keep moving but gently there is no need to be aggressive- I raised this with my physio the first time around as he tried to make me feel I wasn’t going to have the best outcome if I didn’t push myself but I trusted my own body and it hasnt failed me. Patience is definitely the key here
 

RIT387

junior member
Joined
Feb 15, 2021
Messages
47
Age
59
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
Thank you for your responses. I will check about the inserts and I'm glad to get a response from someone who has been recovering for a longer time. It really helped knowing that better days maybe ahead. :)
@RebelMomma I remembered something that may be worth checking out for those of us on a budget? I had custom inserts from a podiatrist before but they didn't fit well in my shoes. My chiropractor told me about a way to get custom inserts from a computer measurement by Dr Scholl's. They worked great for me. I'm going to look around and see if available where I live now.

 

New

Active Antibacterial
STEPS Challenge

BoneSmart #1 Best Blog

Staff online

Forum statistics

Threads
54,791
Messages
1,428,660
BoneSmarties
33,979
Latest member
Miah1996
Recent bookmarks
0

Top Bottom