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

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badkneesnyc

badkneesnyc

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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.
I was so happy I didn't faint at half a block.

Thanks for the Tylenol info, I will do that.
 
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badkneesnyc

badkneesnyc

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@hawk2go Glad I followed your advice about the Tylenol. I don't think I was ready to go cold turkey. This feels right for me.

Sutures taken out Monday. I kept saying to the nurses, I am so thrilled! And they'd say, Really? And I said, Yes! Each step forward is so good.

Summer in the city. Went out for a walk with cane with Rob up the street this morning (and we live on the sunny side, toasty even at 9:30am). He brought along a folding chair just in case. Didn't need it (yes!). Prospect Park, I see you in my near future. That said, I am taking it slow. I can walk around the apartment without my cane, hot dog. But I keep it at hand. Icarus, sun.

A friend gave me bananagrams to keep my mind preoccupied during recovery. Rob and I were playing in the bed last night and Angus jumped up and settled on Rob's tiles. Draw game; so glad the cat is adjusting.

Red yarn coming in the mail today. Knitting a scarf for a church charity project. I'm going to try to start some part-time work again in the next couple of weeks (work at home freelance right now) so nice to make use of this time doing stuff I enjoy. I have been reading, watching Netflix on my Kindle, doing Duolingo Spanish, knitting, audiobook, crossword puzzles, PT exercises, inside walking (keeping the last two fairly light, when I feel it getting stiff it's elevate and ice).

Rob's birthday today so we may order Mexican delivered, his call.

Next up, post-op appointment 8/9. I'm ready.
 

benne68

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Sounds like you are doing well, @badkneesnyc, and you have a great attitude.

Feeling well enough (and brave enough!) to walk outdoors is a major milestone! Prospect Park is such a great place for walking any season (daughter lives nearby, and we walk there often) but you will enjoy it even more as the weather starts to cool down.

Wishing you a smooth recovery!
 

hawk2go

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I'm going to try to start some part-time work again in the next couple of weeks (work at home freelance right now) so nice to make use of this time doing stuff I enjoy.
I'm not sure what you do for work but factor in your knee pain and your stamina in calculations about how much time you can tolerate. Practice now so you know you have a better understanding of what you want to commit to.

I started work fulltime from home 1 week after my LTKR and returned to the office at 5 weeks. With the RTKR, I was part time from home at 5 weeks. I'm really not sure how I worked so soon after the left, especially since I could not sit up for long periods and was still on opioids. Anywho, I thought I learned my lesson for the RTKR and practiced sitting up the week before I resumed work. I found that my stamina was really awful, with very good reason, those 1st few months. The knee pain at the end of each work day was significant at first and required pain meds and icing in the evening.
 
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badkneesnyc

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Thanks. Since it's freelance computer work if it's too much I can lower the number of jobs I do, that's the upside. I have done a couple of one-hour Zooms with my leg up on a chair, but I know I will have to play it by ear for work.
 

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I'm sure you'll make a good decision and returning to work allows you to focus on "not the knee". :heehee:
 
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Starting week 4. I am able to walk around the apartment without my cane. It's easier with tennis shoes on. I'm trying to focus on bending my knees and walking heel to toe, gait. I carry the cane too for security. Trying to listen to my body in figuring out how much to do and when to stop, feeling uncertain. Today I went until I felt it in my quads, which honestly wasn't that long.

By early afternoon I start to feel the leg stiffening then work on elevating and icing. When I wake up I do a PT set. At around 4pm do another PT set, that helps with stiffness.

I feel stronger every day still.
 

benne68

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Hi @badkneesnyc :wave:

You're doing great for just four weeks out. Focusing on your gait is smart and will help you with your recovery and you will continue to feel stronger each day.

I did the same thing with the cane -- walked around without it indoors (where I could grab a wall or some furniture) and took it with me when I when out until about two months post-op. At my 6-week follow-up, my surgeon told me I walked better without the cane than with it but I kept carrying it for a couple more weeks because it encouraged other people to give me a wide berth!
 

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I am able to walk around the apartment without my cane. It's easier with tennis shoes on.
I have a pair of sneakers that I only wear inside. They are too worn for outdoors but they are far sturdier than the slippers and slip-ons that I thought I'd use inside. I just wore out another pair of sneakers and replaced them so my old outside sneakers become my new inside sneakers and the new pair are now for outside. I find that as I improve my wear pattern changes and new shoes allow me to keep up with the new gait.

@badkneesnyc, walking without a cane inside is great news and good progress. It's a reason to celebrate. The cane is a great social cue for others and a good reminder for us that we aren't quite there yet. I used my cane outside until I lost it at the market, at around 3 months. I didn't realize I'd lost it until I was halfway home which was clear indication I no longer needed it.
 
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badkneesnyc

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That's a great idea. Mine are old. Not so worn but basically slip-ons and shaped to how I used to walk. The other day I forgot my cane in the bathroom.

Today I crashed. I've already taken 2 naps. Probably a good thing since I have post-op appointment tomorrow and a zoom doctor appointment at 3. Plus my friend wants to come bring us some homemade pasta sauce. Looking forward to that.

I'm still taking 2 500 mg acetaminophen every 6 hours. Not sure need it anymore. Any pain right now is minimal.
 

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I'm still taking 2 500 mg acetaminophen every 6 hours. Not sure need it anymore. Any pain right now is minimal.
Also great news! :yahoo: Try cutting the dose in half that way it stays in your system over time but if you don't need that much, you're tapering down.
 
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badkneesnyc

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First post-op appointment today. Surgeon said I was a star. Made me super happy to hear that. Took x-ray and it looks good. At 115. He said it was up to me if I want to do outside PT but with my progress he didn't consider it necessary. I'm on the fence since I have done a lot of therapy, and I have been walking and exercising at home. I am glad I came here to get a better perspective. A PT person will push me more, no question. But the slow and steady has really been working for me. I have minimal pain and am happy with my recovery pace. Have cut acetaminophen dose in half starting yesterday, 500 mg every 6 hours.
 

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You are definitely a rock star! Whether to take PT or not is completely up to you. If you decide to go just be firm about not letting them push you beyond where your knee wants to go!
 

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You’re doing fine with what you’re doing now, at home. Why risk getting a PT who might not be appropriate for you, especially since your surgeon isn‘t pushing PT. I SO wish my surgeon had felt this way! It would have saved me a lot of pain and stress!
 
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badkneesnyc

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Yes, it was too soon to do computer work this week, end of week 4. I can put my leg up on a chair and work for about an hour, after that I start getting sore. Live and learn. After this job I am taking more time off.

I can take a shower without a shower chair now. That was a good milestone. Sunday is the last day for my daily handful of pills, happy dance. I stopped taking the acetaminophen a couple of days ago and it's going fine pain wise so far.

I'm making the decision when to do the left knee. The minimum is 3 months apart. In 6 weeks I have follow-up with the surgeon and we'll be discussing it. Now is the best time for me to do it insurance and income wise. I also have soreness and pain in that knee and it's noticeably bent. I know the second knee in the same person can be a totally different experience. I still think one at a time was a good choice for me. At least I will have a bundle of stretchy pants and sweats still on hand.
 

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I can put my leg up on a chair and work for about an hour, after that I start getting sore.
I had the same problem when I tried to go back to work. I tried getting up and walking around the house every hour but usually ended up lying on the couch with my leg elevated and my laptop on my stomach. (Not the most conducive position for working. :heehee: ) Give it a few more weeks and you will notice improvement.
 

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