TKR Hey Jude knee replacement

Hey Jude

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Hello. I had a total knee replacement on 8th July and am struggling. Please can you add me to your July Sparklers list.
 

Jockette

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Hi and Welcome!

Yes, we will add you to that list.

What specifically are you struggling with?

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.

Just keep in mind all people are different, as are the approaches to this recovery and rehab. The key is, “Find what works for you.“ Your doctors, PTs and BoneSmart are available to help, but you are the final judge as to the recovery approach you choose.

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.
 
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Hey Jude

Hey Jude

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Hello everyone! I had a total knee replacement 6 days ago. The whole process in hospital went better than I had hoped and I was discharged two days later. Since getting home I have really struggled on several fronts - unbearable pain, massive swelling and bruising, lack of sleep and chronic constipation, plus 6 hours waiting in Accident & Emergency when I was advised over the phone that I might have deep vein thrombosis. I have just about got onto a steady footing with all of the above but consequently I am only really just starting to make progress with the exercising. I’m finding it all much tougher than I had envisaged. Am I alone?!
 

Jockette

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Unfortunately, all you are experiencing is normal. This is a tough recovery.

Please read through the guidelines, following them should help lessen the pain.

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
elevate
ice
take your pain meds by prescription schedule (not when pain starts!)
don't overwork.

By the way, I merged your newest thread with your original recovery thread, as we prefer that members in recovery have only one thread.

This benefits you because all your information is in one place, easy to find, and maintains a nice journal for you.

This also benefits our staff, as your information is all in one place, and we often go back through your thread for previous details, so we know what you‘ve been through which helps us advise you better.

So, please keep all your posts in this thread. If you’d like a new title, let us know what you want, and we’ll change it for you.

Many members bookmark their thread in their computer browser, so they can find it when they log on.
How can I find my threads and posts?

Best wishes on your continuing recovery! :flwrysmile:
 

Layla

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Hello and welcome to recovery!
No, you’re not alone. It is especially difficult when you were off to a good start to begin feeling like nothing is going right. While all you’re experiencing is considered normal, not everyone deals with it all at once. Some do, but not all.

Pain, if you’re not comfortably mobile, please speak with your surgeon’s office or his
contact person about switching or adjusting meds.

Check out the articles, Jockette, left you above, especially the two on ICE and ELEVATE as ice will help with inflammation and the resulting pain and elevation will help with swelling.

Sleep - sleep when you’re able, day or night, this will regulate with time and is a common complaint.

Constipation - Hopefully you’re taking a stool softener and staying adequately hydrated, both are important. Better yet, possibly the issue resolved by now. :fingersx:
The BoneSmart Library has an article on Constipation HERE

I‘m sorry you had to deal with the concern of a blood clot and spend hours in A&E so early on. It had to be uncomfortable. Thankfully nothing was found.

Wishing you lots of comfort. Hang in there days will get brighter! :SUNsmile: I like both your avatar and the song. Always been a favorite of mine.
@Heyjude
 
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Hey Jude

Hey Jude

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Thank you for the very supportive comments. I was discharged from hospital on a Friday with only three days medication and advised to contact my doctor to arrange more.
As anyone in the UK knows it is not easy at the moment to get a GP appointment hence I rationed the meds over the weekend so I didn’t run out altogether. That is why I was in terrible constant pain and couldn’t sleep. I don’t ever want to go through that again! Thankfully I did manage to get an emergency prescription on Monday which my husband collected for me.
I could kick myself (definitely metaphorically rather than physically) for not checking the packet of medication given to me before I left the hospital and requesting more!
 

ski_bum

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Hello everyone! I had a total knee replacement 6 days ago. The whole process in hospital went better than I had hoped and I was discharged two days later. Since getting home I have really struggled on several fronts - unbearable pain, massive swelling and bruising, lack of sleep and chronic constipation, plus 6 hours waiting in Accident & Emergency when I was advised over the phone that I might have deep vein thrombosis. I have just about got onto a steady footing with all of the above but consequently I am only really just starting to make progress with the exercising. I’m finding it all much tougher than I had envisaged. Am I alone?!
You are not alone.
Wishing you quick recovery.
We know what & where you are.
 

benne68

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I did manage to get an emergency prescription on Monday which my husband collected for me.
Glad to read this. Pain management is very important in the early weeks of recovery, as I'm sure you read in the articles that @Jockette shared.

Welcome to BoneSmart. Share your journey, tell us about your concerns and ask questions; we've all been on this recovery journey and are here to support you. Oh, and feel free to vent! :console2:
 
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Hey Jude

Hey Jude

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Aha! So not all pain is the same! I had wondered why I was lying awake in agony every night despite being on max levels of codeine and paracetamol round the clock. I persuaded my doctor to additionally prescribe me Gabapentin which I had also been taking in hospital immediately after surgery. The pain has now reduced and my sleeping has improved. Apparently Gabapentin is for nerve pain. Codeine doesn’t work for nerve pain. So I conclude that my nerves are damaged. Has anybody else experienced this? If so, how long do the nerves take to recover?
 

Jaycey

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So I conclude that my nerves are damaged. Has anybody else experienced this? If so, how long do the nerves take to recover?
Still very early days. Don't assume nerves are damaged. They are probably just traumatised.

I too was prescribed Gabapentin just post op LTHR. I certainly does work well. Be sure and ease off it when you want to stop taking it. Some people don't react well to stopping it suddenly.
 
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Hey Jude

Hey Jude

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Thank you for your reassurances and advice. I am a natural pessimist and always worry about the worst case scenario. Another thing…..how long normally before the bruising goes down? It’s now nine days since my surgery and my leg is not looking pretty and feels very sore.
 

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Jaycey

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how long normally before the bruising goes down
Totally normal for bruising at this point. In many cases bruising doesn't even show up for several days post op. Just needs a bit of time. If an area is very sore try icing and elevating. I iced bruised areas more than the new hip after my last THR.
 
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Hey Jude

Hey Jude

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I am icing and elevating as I type. I love the ice cuff almost as much as my husband.
It feels self indulgent to share my worries on this forum but it does help me emotionally as well as practically. Thank you all you Bonesmart administrators and fellow TKRers.
Thought I’d share something more positive. On Wednesday I had the dressing changed by a marvellous Nurse Practitioner, who was particularly informative and supportive, and my wound is healed and clean. Staples to be removed next week.
 

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Claire56

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I usually figure about 2 weeks but mine at least, took longer. They also got quite colorful. Our brusing is so extensive, I believe it takes longer than usual for our bodies to clean up the mess.
 

InkedMarie

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I bruised for weeks & had new bruises pop up a couple weeks post op.

Marie
 

ChrisF

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Thank you for your reassurances and advice. I am a natural pessimist and always worry about the worst case scenario. Another thing…..how long normally before the bruising goes down? It’s now nine days since my surgery and my leg is not looking pretty and feels very sore.
The bruising looks very similar to mine at that stage. My op was 21st June and the bruising has now gone as has a lot of the swelling,apart from my actual knee. I phoned my GP when I realised my codeine phosphate was going to run out and got them straight away, it’s ridiculous how few you get when you are discharged. I’m envious that you are getting more sleep now ☹️ I’m not getting to see my GP until next Friday but did have a ‘phone consultation’ he’s arranged for me to have bloods checked before possibly prescribing ‘Amitryptaline’ as its for nerve pain and should also help with sleep - I certainly hope so.
Stay strong, you’re doing great x
 

ChrisF

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Hello everyone! I had a total knee replacement 6 days ago. The whole process in hospital went better than I had hoped and I was discharged two days later. Since getting home I have really struggled on several fronts - unbearable pain, massive swelling and bruising, lack of sleep and chronic constipation, plus 6 hours waiting in Accident & Emergency when I was advised over the phone that I might have deep vein thrombosis. I have just about got onto a steady footing with all of the above but consequently I am only really just starting to make progress with the exercising. I’m finding it all much tougher than I had envisaged. Am I alone?!
is your constipation sorted? It’s the codeine I sent for prune juice from Amazon which was a huge help. Tinned prunes are handy to have in and I add a couple of prunes to my granola along with strawberries and blueberries everyday now as well as drinking litres of water. I hope that helps x
 
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Hey Jude

Hey Jude

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Thanks for the advice. My breakfast is always muesli and fruit, and I too enjoy tinned prunes. But that wasn’t enough in my case. I‘ve been having a daily sachet of Laxido since I came out of hospital and that sorted the constipation. The Nurse Practitioner I saw recently did suggest that it ought to be prescribed alongside Codeine as it is such a common problem.
 
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Hey Jude

Hey Jude

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Thank you for your reassurances and advice. I am a natural pessimist and always worry about the worst case scenario. Another thing…..how long normally before the bruising goes down? It’s now nine days since my surgery and my leg is not looking pretty and feels very sore.
The bruising looks very similar to mine at that stage. My op was 21st June and the bruising has now gone as has a lot of the swelling,apart from my actual knee. I phoned my GP when I realised my codeine phosphate was going to run out and got them straight away, it’s ridiculous how few you get when you are discharged. I’m envious that you are getting more sleep now ☹️ I’m not getting to see my GP until next Friday but did have a ‘phone consultation’ he’s arranged for me to have bloods checked before possibly prescribing ‘Amitryptaline’ as its for nerve pain and should also help with sleep - I certainly hope so.
Stay strong, you’re doing great x
Such supportive comments, thank you. Good to hear that the bruising does disappear within a month. My bruises are just starting to go yellow which is a good sign I think.
Sorry to learn that you have such a problem with sleep. That seems to be another common problem. My sleep is much improved now the nerve pain is being treated with Gabapentin, but I do still wake up in the night and then struggle to drop off again. I follow the Bonesmart advice and just take naps when I can to compensate. But it’s not ideal. I hope your doctor is sympathetic and you get the help you need x
 
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Hey Jude

Hey Jude

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11 days after surgery and I’m still in constant pain from my knee. Might this be just from the trauma of surgery or should I start worrying about infection?

I’m still taking codeine and paracetamol round the clock plus Gabapentin for nerve pain. Most of the pain is from the knee itself which has been warm ever since I came out of hospital. I also have pain running from my buttock to the arch of my foot which I guess is an inflamed sciatic nerve. The swelling and bruising were extensive but are just starting to subside. However the pain is just as bad. My GP was surprised and said I should be starting to reduce the Codeine by now.

I’m sure I’m not overdoing the rehab - I spend most of the day lying down with my leg fully elevated, I ice regularly, and only get up periodically to do the prescribed exercises. I have one or two short walks around my home or garden each day. That makes my knee feel ‘sore’ but that soon calms down. However the underlying pain from the knee still persists.

Is it normal to have persistent pain 11 days after surgery? It is really starting to get me down and get me anxious.
 

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