TKR Marge's recovery thread RTKR 7/15/22

@Jockette thank you.

Wow, such a strange thing. I felt like the doctors did not bring up TKR or discuss it much with me at all. I did my own research. They kept telling me that it was totally up to me. I read a lot of stuff here and talked to people. Watched YouTube videos. Read articles.

Ann Marie, my friend, said she wished she had known how long the healing process was going to take or had an idea what it involved. I'm starting to get a deeper understanding of what going through it without good outside perspective and advice would be like, wow. So wonderful of you to help here.
So glad you didn’t fall @badkneesnyc ! I don’t think many doctors explain it all. As I told someone else on here this morning, doctors have no idea how our recoveries will go. I’d rather they tell people to plan on twelve weeks off work, that it’s a year long journey but those people probably wouldn’t have surgery.

@InkedMarie You pretty much quoted my surgeon, "I have no idea how It will go," ha. Well, maybe not exactly, but essentially. Then as he left my hospital room after the surgery he said, I hope you are not one of the really painful recoveries. (Doh) But he is a good surgeon.

I work out of home doing freelance, so that really helps me be flexible with recovery. I know it will take time.
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@Susie-Q I'm really enjoying the book. It's audio, so I am starting to develop a southern accent. Should make a beautiful movie. I'm keeping my head in the sand until I finish it since so many people have read it.
PT came today and she said I should just do the cane now. I get to put away the walker until my left TKR. Starting tomorrow I am hitting the Percocet as needed. Trying to put extra effort into the ankle pumps to reduce swelling.

So glad tripping on my cane only ached a little last night.

My energy levels improve every day pretty much. I don't push the envelope, but I am too antsy not to be up and down and doing the light exercises and short walks around the apartment.

I'm starting to tell my friends when I am up and out again we are going to celebrate with champagne. And I may even have more than one glass!
PT came today and she said I should just do the cane now.
Actually, you should be the one to decide when to ditch the walker and use the cane only. You are the only one who knows how stable your new knee is. I found that around the house I was OK with just the cane and most of the time, not even that. But, out in the public is a completely different story. One misstep, a child, person, or even an animal bumping into you could put you on the floor. I used my walker out in public for at least 6 weeks. After that, I used my cane in public for about 5 months for just that same reason. I knew I was OK on my own, but if something unexpected could cause me to fall, well, it just wasn't worth taking that chance.
Yes, and the sidewalks tend to be narrow around here with lots of foot traffic and baby carriages and toddlers and people walking dogs. I did kind of think she meant for walking in the house. We won't go outside for another week.
Tomorrow is my 2 week anniversary. My balance is better, I have more strength. Have been off of Oxy for a couple of days and haven't noticed an up tick in the pain. Before surgery I felt recurring pain in my left hip from misaligned walking which I haven't felt since TKR.

The last couple of nights I have had trouble falling asleep. I did nap in the afternoon yesterday which may have contributed. Ok, and I was at the end of Crawdads and didn't want to wait until today to find out what happened.

I'm a little nervous about going outside with PT tomorrow, I guess that's normal. That will be our last at home session. Saturday the visiting nurse will take out the stitches and Dr visit on 8/9. No one has mentioned any goals for that visit. Taking daily pics of incision site to download to MyChart as instructed.

I'm basically back on WW but not tracking, not mentally there yet. There may have been some chocolate ice cream consumption, nothing heinous.
It sounds like you're doing well. It can be easy to move funny or have a little trip as we get confident--perhaps a bit overconfident :heehee: I speak from experience as I did something similar during my recovery. :doh:

If you feel like your body is telling you to nap, go for it. Usually during recovery it doesn't interfere with night sleeping, unlike during normal times. Sleeping at night can just be problematic early on. I came to accept sleeping in installments.
@kneeper Yes, it's those moments you feel closer to your usual and kind of forget.

I am starting to really get why the recovery depends so much on each person. The home PT was wonderful. Today was my last day with her. She helped me get over my fears quickly and I thought the routine she set up for me was well judged. I've gone through PT three or four times. I still tend to push my limits, not always so great because I start to get dizzy and lightheaded, had this before surgery, when I start over exerting myself, especially in the heat and humidity. Today wasn't too bad heat-wise, but it was humid.

I'm glad I came here and read the advice and experiences. Happily I feel it's all on the same page with my treatment so far. Lots of icing and elevating and rest, with light walking and easy movements.

Had a weepy morning but PT totally picked up my spirits. We walked half a block up the street. She totally left the decision up to me and wasn't pushy at all and monitored how I felt through the whole thing. I considered not doing it. I'm so glad I did. What a boost mentally. Just as a precaution I took the rest of the day easy. My knees can actually go further than my stamina right now.

The surgeon has been monitoring my incision site by the photos I upload to MyChart every day. He wants to keep them in a little longer so the sutures are now scheduled to be removed this Monday.

I have a friend who broke her leg and had to stay off it for 8 weeks(!!) She said TKR is in her future (she has a few issues). When I am walking better we're going to walk together and get coffee (there's a coffee place about a block away from me). She does have to drive her Jeep a couple of miles to get to my neighborhood. I told her we can trade ortho war stories (it's all relative, isn't it).

I'll be so happy when Angus (my cat) doesn't hide under the bed when I am around and wants me to pet him again. He's a sensitive little guy and this disrupted his life a bit much.
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Oh, your poor Angus. Kitties are so particular little critters. I've been a rescuer for most of my adult life and have had as many as 13 at one time. Is Angus just afraid of your walker and cane or is it your change in walking? I had the 13 cats at the time of my tkr and had no problems with their hiding from me. I found the walker and cane kept them from getting underfoot. The only real problem I had was my big boy decided to jump up on my new knee when it was only about a week old. I screamed, he took off, and didn't jump back on me until I told him it was OK.

I found the joy and the struggle of caring for them after my surgery was very helpful in my recovery. I did all this natural PT right in my own home and never had to go out for formal PT!

It sounds like you are coming along really well! You're listening to your knee and it's behaving nicely!
@sistersinhim so wonderful you do that.

Yes, he's afraid of the walker and cane, and that I am different. We got him at the city shelter about 4 years ago, teeny tiny little guy rescued from the street. After we brought him home he hid under the bed for a couple of weeks. We would sit and read and talk to him. He grew into a super affectionate lap cat. I'm so used to him sleeping on me I miss him, but I know it's for the best.

when I first went to the surgeon, he saw these red dots on my knee and said, What's that? I said that's where my cat kneads my knee. He said, cats, what are you going to do, no scratches before surgery, ha.
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My sutures are out! I am really happy, folks, with the pace so far. I think just being on this side of the fence is leaving me humming Ode to Joy. Every day is a little better. This is the best the swelling has been (I know that will come and go). The bruising is disappearing. I'm taking a couple of Tylenol a day but the nurse said I can start doing it as needed. I have moments where I forget about the cane.

Yes to the universe!!

Oh, and Angus rubbed against my leg twice last night and let me pet him. Icing on the cake.
That's good news all around @badkneesnyc! Susie-Q and I traded 1/2 block walk stories early on. :heehee: We're both at about 11 months and well into our back to normal (with some occasional ODIC membership) stories now. Looking forward to the day you virtually join us.:walking:

When you take Tylenol, the most effective way to take it is 2 x 500 mg tablets every 6 hours, for a total of 4,000 mg (4 doses) in 24 hours. You need to take it regularly, to keep up the levels in your bloodstream. If you just take the odd dose now and then, it's far less effective. Have you tried cutting the doses or extending the time between doses? If not, try one or both before moving to the odd, as needed dose.

Check all other medications you're taking, to make sure there is no Tylenol/Acetaminophen/Paracetamol in them. If there is, scale back one or two of your regular Tylenol doses, so you stay within that safe 24 hour limit of 4,000 mg.

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