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TKR Im losing my confidence

Celle

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The thing is that there is no "right" time to achieve any milestones in recovery after a TKR. Nobody else's knee was damaged as much or as little as yours. Nobody else had such extensive (or minimal) surgery. Nobody else had as much or as little ligament and tendon distortion as you.

Your knee is on it own journey to recovery. It knows what it's doing. It will heal itself, as long as you don't do anything to inhibit that healing. Nature knows what she's doing and really doesn't need much help.

All of that is why we advise people not to compare their recovery to anyone else's recovery.
If you set goals for your recovery, you could be setting yourself up for disappointment and frustration.

I know that this recovery seems to take an extraordinary amount of patience, but almost everyone gets there in the end.
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Timetolive

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I understand your frustration. Bonesmart is a great place to get reassurance, advice, and commiserate with others. It is also a place to read other's recoveries. Some of these recoveries are painfree, quick, and can make a person feel like something is wrong with their recovery. I want my knee to stop swelling, stop hurting, and be able to bend and straighten like these miraculous recoveries I read about on here. It just won't. So, I am giving it time to heal on its own timeline. I stopped PT after an injury there. My OS told me to ride my recumbent 20 minutes a day and walk with a full stride 20 minutes a day. If I had time, I am to repeat this twice a day. I KNOW you are disappointed. I am too. Although, we cannot change what is happening with our knees, we can do what we feel is the best for us. I am happy for those that have had great recoveries. I am happy for us too. We are the ones that hang in there, show great strength in the face of adversity, and believe that life will get better with time and healing. You are in my prayers for strenght, comfort, and a day filled with peace.
 

referee54

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Just as everybody is unique, so is our recovery. My BTKR recovery took me eight months to reach 90%-95%---and a bit longer to get to 100%---and I gained ROM in tiny increments even up to and past a year post surgery.

I went back to teaching at eight weeks and I thought that it would be my "Magic date." I was wrong. Every day I would wake up and wonder if my stiffness would actually stay away---and I would wonder when I would lose a slight but noticeable limp. Every day I was disappointed, as by 11:00 AM I was stiff sore and tired---and I did not lose a limp until about five months post-BTKR.

I would ask my PT's when I would get better. They would simply smile and say that, while they did not know exactly when I would get there, they did tell me that I would---and I did.
All of that is why we advise people not to compare their recovery to anyone else's recovery.
If you set goals for your recovery, you could be setting yourself up for disappointment and frustration.
Bingo---I was frustrated at times, as well---and I would limp around the grocery store with my wife. My recovery seemed to be at a standstill.

I also had gait issues, and I was involved in PT for four months---and the milestones did come, but on their own terms and on their own schedule. I watched other TKR patients move on and out, while I was still there.

I also umpired baseball games the following April after my BTKR, with a slight little limp.

It was not until about six months that I saw some real progress. Six months! And then I was only at about 80%. I just went from day to day wondering when it would get better.

It was not until about the middle of July---eight months later---that I began to feel myself again---and my knees were close to being fully recovered---I still had a ways to go, but, at eight months, I was getting close.
 
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Naomi60

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Thanks everyone for the advice and encouragement. @Denmother I read your thread and you certainly did take some heat for all your activity so early in your recovery. How are you doing now? What is your ROM?

I am just continuing with one exercise for extension and one for flexion. In addition, I have a personal trainer and we work on strength in my arms, core and back but in a seated position for a few more weeks. I'm also using a rowing machine which I love because it gives me a little knee bend action while doing something aerobic. I have a recumbent bike I use for about 15-20 minutes as a warm up to my extension/flexing exercises. These things combined with some short walks is my plan of action for the next few weeks. It seems to be a good balance of activities for me.

@referee54 thank you for your story. I think the word "frustration" pretty much sums it for me. So frustrated and then angry, then depressed, rinse, repeat. But I think I am finally coming out of the funk and feeling hopeful. An increase in ROM would really help in that endeavor at this point!

I'm just trying to keep the faith baby!
 
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Naomi60

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Update on my TKR Oct 27, 2015. Last time I mentioned that I had made no progress in my extension (+5) and my ROM (105) from week 8 to week 16. That was two weeks ago. In that time, my husband has helped me do one extension exercise and one knee bender. We do 3-5 of these each several times a day. In addition, I ride my recumbent bike for no more than 20 minutes. I am limiting my walking to daily activities. I am icing when it feels like it needs it. I'm elevating whenever I am lying around.

Well, it's begun. My ROM is improving. This week I am at 0 extension and 110 ROM! I was so excited. I could actually feel it improving during the night. I think I was stretching and bending my knee while I slept. Anyway, I knew the PT would measure it and it would be 110.

Needless to say, I was overjoyed and relieved. Now I feel confident that I will continue to improve. My depression has lifted, I'm not crying everyday. For the first time, I can actually consider having my left knee done now.

Woohoo!
 

jarabas

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Rene this is such great news. Congratulations! You keep it up and your knee will become even more mobile.
:loveshwr::friends::happydance:
 

Timetolive

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Congratulations! Patience is a hard thing isn't it? What exercises were you doing to help your extension? I don't have 0 yet and would like to get there.
 
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Naomi60

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@Timetolive Greetings, the exercise for extension was this: sitting up on the bed with my legs straight out in front of me, my husband would push down on my thigh, just above my knee and lift my ankle with his other hand to stretch out the muscles and ligaments at the back of my knee. It was uncomfortable but it wasn't excruciating. We held that for 30 seconds in the beginning and then went to a minute. Did this one 3 times every few hours. Maybe a total of 10-12 a day. I just concentrated on relaxing all the surrounding muscles to get a good stretch. Good luck!
 
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Naomi60

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Hello, this is my 5 month update. My ROM is about 112, extension is 0. I continue PT on my own. I am walking a mile each day in addition to my daily activities. I ride my recumbent bike and continue to do the exercise described above for increasing ROM. And I'm going to Cuba in 6 weeks. I will increase my walking distance each week until I am walking at least 2 and hopefully 3 miles per day. The trip to Cuba is a great motivator.
 

newlybionic

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I hope you have a great trip to Cuba. You sound like you are doing very well.
 

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