Bilateral TKR Indigo_bunting’s BTKR recovery

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Indigo_Bunting

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Day 19
The positives
- This morning I did the usual ADLs like walking around and PT exercises, feeling sturdy and comfortable. Got all the way to lunch before feeling sore - then realized I’d taken nothing but a baby aspirin since waking up.

- I don’t have a cane or crutches so to wean off the walker I am carrying it while walking. Again, trusting my legs and feeling comfortable.

The negatives
- Bend/ROM hasn’t budged since leaving the hospital and I am starting to despair of ever being able to sit in a chair, drive, fly, climb stairs, bike, any normal activity. I started Meloxicam yesterday not for pain but to reduce inflammation to help my knees bend. Per the drug info it can take several days to reach full effectiveness.

- Haven’t been outside. Between the uneven brick sidewalk that you can’t roll on and the inability to sit down if I need a break, it is not tempting.
 
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Jockette

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The negatives
- Bend/ROM hasn’t budged since leaving the hospital and I am starting to despair of ever being able to sit in a chair, drive, fly, climb stairs, bike, any normal activity. I started Meloxicam yesterday not for pain but to reduce inflammation to help my knees bend. Per the drug info it can take several days to reach full effectiveness.
Please don’t worry about your ROM, its going to be fine. 19 days is a drop in the bucket in this year long recovery.

Regaining our ROM is more about Time than repetitions of a list of exercises.

Time to recover.
Time for pain and swelling to settle.
Time to heal.

Our range of motion is right there all
along just waiting for that to happen so it can show itself.

In the general run of things, it doesn't need to be fought for, worked hard for or worried about. It will happen. Normal activity is the key to success.
 
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Indigo_Bunting

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[/QUOTE]
Please don’t worry about your ROM, its going to be fine. 19 days is a drop in the bucket in this year long recovery.
[/QUOTE]
Thank you, @Jockette . As of today (day 22) I’m at 65 (L) and 61 (R). If you know of anyone who had persistently very low flexion for this long who went on to good results and a ROM allowing for a normal life I would appreciate it. I’m very discouraged.
 

Jockette

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Please don’t be discouraged, you are so very early in recovery. It is far too early to be worried or discouraged. Your knee and whole leg has been through major trauma and needs to heal, and healing takes time, way more time than we want.

Here’s my favorite ROM experience:

This is what one of our members, TortiTabby, experienced:

(Just so you know, ADL means Activities of Daily Living.)

“At my six week appointment this is what my OS wrote in my visit summary: "She reads an online website called Bone Smart which states to not push through pain following knee replacement. If she were to follow this direction, she will have to learn to live with a knee that only reaches to 85 degrees of flexion. I believe this website is very misleading."
It has now been 20 weeks and all I do is ADL and this is what my ROM has done:
3.5 wks: 75
6 wks: 85
7 wks: 90
10.5 wks: 95
14 wks: 100
17 wks: 105
20 weeks (where I am today): 110
I am so thrilled it keeps improving and improving and I know now that I will get to my goal of 120 (or even better, dare I say!) :egypdance:
So, if a OS or PT bullies you into thinking your ROM will not improve over time they are wrong. By the way, I haven't been back to see the OS since that horrible appointment at 6 weeks, but I sure am going back when I reach 120 just to say, "Ha! You were wrong, BoneSmart was right!" :yes:

And,

“Just an update for those who are apprehensive about gaining ROM:
It has now been 26 weeks and all I do is ADL and this is what my ROM has done:
3.5 wks: 75
6 wks: 85
7 wks: 90
10.5 wks: 95
14 wks: 100
17 wks: 105
20 weeks: 110
26 weeks (where I am today): 120!!!
I did it! My goal of 120! No "pushing through pain", no PT after the first 3 visits, and most importantly to me: No MUA! My surgeon who said I would never get beyond 85 ROM without pushing through pain was wrong, wrong, wrong. I'm excited to see if it gets even better. :happydance:
 

DJL1967

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I think you are still very early in the recovery to worry about reaching flexion numbers. I reached my numbers without any forceful therapy and once the swelling subsided I noticed a big increase. My day to day activity of walking and occasional stairs also assisted with my flexion numbers. It takes some people longer than others to reach their goals. Hang in there, I am sure you will see the results you desire soon.
 

Sks1997

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I would have loved to have known about Bonesmart on my PKR in 2016. The therapists made me crazy about my flexion, I was always worried about it and it was always so painful at every single therapy session. I yelled out a lot and warned them that I was going to. And I thought that was normal, LOL!
i do one set of my stretching exercises in the morning now and a few exercises for quad strengthening and about 10-15 min of recumbent bike in evening if I didn’t over do my knee that day. I don’t even hardly think about my flexion this time. I tend to worry more about all these crazy sporadic pains that we all have and the fact that I still have a slight limp! I know it will resolve.
Guess I will stick with my old nursing saying of “Keep Calm and Carry On”.
 
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Indigo_Bunting

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The therapists made me crazy about my flexion
What makes me crazy is the lack of bend and lack of progress. The numbers wouldn’t matter if I could sit in a chair or make other functional improvements.
 
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Indigo_Bunting

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Thank you, @Jockette . Tbh 75 at 3.5 weeks would be a massive improvement for me. I’m pinning my hopes on the outpatient PT that starts next week. The PT assigned to me worked miracles on my shoulder a few years ago so if anyone can do this right, she can.
 

Jockette

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Regaining our ROM is more about Time than repetitions of a list of exercises.

Time to recover.
Time for pain and swelling to settle.
Time to heal.

Our range of motion is right there all
along just waiting for that to happen so it can show itself.

In the general run of things, it doesn't need to be fought for, worked hard for or worried about. It will happen. Normal activity is the key to success.
 
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Indigo_Bunting

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Day 25
Enjoying a change of scenery. Two-hour drive to our little cabin in the woods was brutal on the knees plus I landed hard the first time I dealt with a step down, leading to more pain and visible swelling. But being able to see the sky and the clouds and a different set of of four walls makes it all worthwhile. Have walked a little outside with hiking sticks. The ground is too uneven for a walker.
 

DJL1967

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I can imagine a 2 hour drive so early on in your recovery would be brutal on the knees. Even at 9 weeks for me a 2 hour flight was difficult and uncomfortable. Glad to hear though that you were able to get out for a change in scenery. It makes such a difference mentally and gives hope that you are making progress. Make sure to ice and elevate as soon as you can.
 

Booger

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Day 25
Enjoying a change of scenery. Two-hour drive to our little cabin in the woods was brutal on the knees plus I landed hard the first time I dealt with a step down, leading to more pain and visible swelling. But being able to see the sky and the clouds and a different set of of four walls makes it all worthwhile. Have walked a little outside with hiking sticks. The ground is too uneven for a walker.
Enjoy the scene change. I bet its nice. It does get better. Just not fast enough for us. I bet your numbers will keep getting better it's a time thing.
Im almost looking forward to getting back to work. even if it does put me in there on Christmas. I'm not looking forward to the steps or 12hr days. But so ready for normalcy.

Booger
 
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Indigo_Bunting

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Recommended car position feat. compression stockings

4E340039-2D7D-4DA1-803D-20916C8FA763.jpeg
 

hawk2go

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So glad you got to get out of the house. A change of scenery is cool! :)
 

ski_bum

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Sounds like you’re making great progress, @Indigo_Bunting!
I remember when I took my first shower after BTKR, it was slow, awkward, but so worth it. Made me feel human again.
I had surgery June 10th. as well.
Just wondering how you are recovering?
I have a good day and 2 bad days then do nothing for 2 days.
Still have a log leg often. Especially when sitting and leg is down at 90 degrees or driving vehicle using surgery leg for gas pedal. Thanks Don
 
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Indigo_Bunting

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Sounds like you’re making great progress, @Indigo_Bunting!
I remember when I took my first shower after BTKR, it was slow, awkward, but so worth it. Made me feel human again.
I had surgery June 10th. as well.
Just wondering how you are recovering?
I have a good day and 2 bad days then do nothing for 2 days.
Still have a log leg often. Especially when sitting and leg is down at 90 degrees or driving vehicle using surgery leg for gas pedal. Thanks Don
I am finishing out week 4 and start outpatient PT today. @Taoquest had a June surgery - is that who you were thinking of?
 
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Taoquest

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Yes, @ski_bum and I had surgery on the same day. it’s interesting how our knees have their own agendas – I’ve always called it a “mystery.”
I think you’re doing great. Good luck at Physical Therapy but don’t let them push you into pain. More swelling is not good. I also used hiking sticks in my recovery, and felt that they are more suitable than a cane with Bilateral TKR.
 

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