TKR Joe’s Recovery Jourknee

Good luck in PT tomorrow, Joe.
Let us know how it goes and remember who's boss...that be you! :wink:
Hope your week is a good one.
@Hey Joe
 
1st outpatient PT was mostly evaluation. But I got a good vibe from the therapist. I told her I don’t want to go more than 8 on the pain scale and she was fine with it. She did have me do some quad sets and other basic stuff. And she wants me to do an hour on the CPM 3 times/day at 90 degrees. Will be interesting to see how things progress. I struggle to get to 90 now without some force. But can get to 110 on the CPM.

I still have some swelling and pain but they are improving. Trying to remember that progress isn’t always smooth or linear. Was able to sleep all night in the bed but still can’t get comfortable lying on my side.

I’m struggling trying to figure out why the big difference between the amount of flexion I can achieve on the CPM vs the amount I can get by sticking my leg out and allowing gravity to work pulling my leg down or doing heel slides. What exactly is the resistance I’m working against? Is it swelling or scar tissue? Adhesions?

Could it just be tight quads?
 
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why the big difference between the amount of flexion I can achieve on the CPM vs the amount I can get by sticking my leg out and allowing gravity to work pulling my leg down or doing heel slides.
With the CPM you have passive motion, and your muscles are being used at all. When you try to do it on your own, you can see how not using those muscles makes a difference.

Most doctors do not prescribe the CPM anymore because they see no benefit in it. You have been doing good with your bend using it, but your muscles aren't benefiting. Try cutting out the CPM for the next few weeks and just use your knee in your daily activities. You should see improvement in that bend as long as you don't over do and cause more swelling. You can't bend a swollen knee very well.
 
Day 26 Post Op

Haven’t posted here in a bit mainly because my recovery has been going pretty well and has been mostly unremarkable. Flexion was measured at 100 degrees today in PT. I love my PT as she is very receptive to my feedback and doesn’t push too hard. I took a walk yesterday for about 10 minutes outside unassisted. Swelling and pain is under control for the most part. I do have a quarter sized fluid filled bump on my kneecap. Not too sure what to make of it. Fortunately I see the surgeon Wednesday for a check up. Hoping he releases me to drive although no one ever told me I couldn’t. Boredom really setting in.
 
Glad to read that your recovery is going well for such early days, @Hey Joe!

I see the surgeon Wednesday for a check up. Hoping he releases me to drive although no one ever told me I couldn’t.
Usually, when the right knee is involved, we are told we have to wait until at least six-weeks post op for clearance to drive. Since it is your left knee, however, you will probably be cleared -- as long as you are no longer taking opioids or other heavy-duty pain killers.

Good luck with your appointment Wednesday. Let us know what you find out about that bump.
 
Thanks @benne68, I still take them occasionally like for PT or at night when I can’t get comfortable.
I’m somewhat concerned about the cyst or bump on my patella. Googling mentions bursitis or possible infection of some kind. It does cause pain when bending.
 
Hoping he releases me to drive although no one ever told me I couldn’t.
You need to check with your insurance company. Some won't cover you until your doctor releases you to drive. It's best to be safe rather than sorry!

Googling mentions bursitis or possible infection of some kind. It does cause pain when bending.
If your area is not hot and red, you probably are safe from an infection. Are you icing and elevating enough? Try increasing those to see if the area goes down some.
 
Good Luck with your check up tomorrow!
Let us know how it goes if you don't mind sharing.
I hope you have a good week!
@Hey Joe
 
Happy One Month Anniversary, Hey Joe!
I hope you had a good visit with your OS. Enjoy the week!
@Hey Joe
 
Hi @Layla. Thanks for the inquiry.

Things have been going pretty smoothly. I'm still working on ROM as my flexion was 113 yesterday. Dr said he wanted 115 by my next visit Nov 29th. I signed up for 3 more weeks of PT as I find it helps me a lot to have someone I trust help me with my recovery. I'm doing all the usual stretches and strengthening work. I found a recumbent elliptical bike at the gym that I can ride. I try to lower the seat bit by bit as I warm up. I've been doing some water walking too. Progress seems slow but it really isn't when I think how far I've come. It's a long road. And I still have a ways to go. I've been driving. And I've taken a few 20 minute walks when the weather cooperates. I can't go down the stairs like a regular person though as can't put good leg down first yet.
I still get achey if my leg hangs down for very long. And I still have swelling and pain when I push myself.
 
Progress seems slow but it really isn't when I think how far I've come. It's a long road. And I still have a ways to go.
Yes, you're right. Full recovery can take up to a year for some and even longer for many, so you're doing well!
Don't forget ice and elevation for swelling and pain. You're not too far along to benefit from it.
A great week to you! Thanks for stopping by with the update. Stay in touch!
 
Hey...Hey Joe!
I hope the past few weeks of recovery have been good. It's getting crazy busy out there as the holidays are fast approaching. I hope your holidays are merry and bright. Wishing you many blessings in the New Year also.
Happy Two Month Anniversary!
@Hey Joe
 
Hey Joe! Happy Three Month Anniversary and Happy New Year too!
How are you doing? Let us know next time you're here, we'd love to read about your progress.
Hope to hear from you soon!
@Hey Joe
 
Hey Joe! Happy Three Month Anniversary and Happy New Year too!
How are you doing? Let us know next time you're here, we'd love to read about your progress.
Hope to hear from you soon!
@Hey Joe
Hi again and thanks for checking in on me Layla..

I had my 3 month follow up yesterday with my OS. He said X-rays looked good. I'm feeling pretty good overall. I still have some pain and stiffness especially after sitting or resting for a while but it loosen's up with activity. I've been pushing pretty hard in the gym with treadmill walking, riding an exercise bike and doing squats, leg presses and the like. I think I overdid it some though with the squats as my knee is more sore this week. It's so hard to know how hard to push it until it complains then I know it was too much. I haven't been icing and/or elevating as much as I should probably.
 
I think I overdid it some though with the squats as my knee is more sore this week. It's so hard to know how hard to push it until it complains then I know it was too much
This is a challenge for most of us. As we start to feel better, we think we can do more than the knee is ready for -- and it tell us!

Something that I found really helpful with my first recovery once I was a few months post-op, was to alternate between exercise days and days off since I often couldn't tell I had overdone until the next day! (On the off days, I would still walk or spin on the bike for movement.). This made it easier to tell just how much the knee would allow without pushing it into pain.

You might want to back off the more intense exercise for a few days, then start again -- just build up slowly!
 
I agree with an every other day regimen. Maybe walking and biking one day, targeted strength training the next?

In terms of strength training, even if we're not post op, it's recommended to allow muscles the time to heal any microtears and rebuild stronger.

Not sure I would do squats and leg presses the same day, but I tend to be conservative about overdoing similar muscles. YMMV!

And yeah, sitting still is what my knees don't like - my 7+ month newer knee stiffens and aches - but it does love walking! My three mile nonstop max is at a plateau due to awful weather, but it's further than I've done in years, and my 2024 goal is five miles!

Overall you're doing great. Do continue to ice and elevate. It's easy in this intermediate phase to forget there's still a lot of healing to do as muscles, tendons, and ligaments adjust to your new structure.
 
It's so hard to know how hard to push it until it complains then I know it was too much.
Isn't that always the way?!! That's why the ODIC (over did it club) stays in biz. :wink: No fun there though!

I think you'll figure out a boundaries given your current limitations. Consider taking a day or two off, ice and elevate, then contemplate the best way to start back slowly and go easy. Aside from the ODIC you're doing great!
Thanks for updating. Have a great February, HeyJoe!
 

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