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TKR May 28, 2014. Springsmom83

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Springsmom83

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Surgery is done and I am home. Pain is quite minimal in the joint, mostly in outer quad and calf. My biggest issue at present is swelling, home PT is coming shortly so I can ask about that. I can bend it about 45 degrees right now, walked a quarter mile this morning and will walk it again this afternoon and evening. So excited to be this far already.
 

Jozilla

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Welcome and good luck in your recovery! You are on your way!
 
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Springsmom83

Springsmom83

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Ok, I will be a week out officially this afternoon. 0 degrees is totally doable, quad lifts are good, etc. However the therapists are fussing about my flexion. At present it is 63-65 degrees. The knee feels tight and warm, I ice as much as possible. Should I be at 90 degrees already?
 

suzzee2000

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I don't know what is the right answer but my ROM was at 90 when I left the hospital. I know we are all different so it might just be that you will take a little longer. Some say don't get hung up on the numbers so I'm sure some one with much more experience will stop by to help you out!
 

referee54

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At present it is 63-65 degrees. The knee feels tight and warm, I ice as much as possible. Should I be at 90 degrees already
Let the PT folks obsess about the numbers; that is their mindset.

As for where you should be right now---you are where you are---there is no schedule set for recovery other than the one set by your surgical knee. It will dictate where you should be and when you progress.

If you set up a schedule for recovery, or allow somebody else to do so, you will only set yourself up for disappointment. The knee sets up the schedule, and we just go along for the ride.

The knee feels tight and warm
That is because it is busy healing. Keep icing and elevating as much as possible---get the "Toes above the nose" and ice and elevate for long periods of time.

Ok, I will be a week out officially this afternoon.
You are very, very early in the grand scheme of recovery, and your knee is still reeling from the surgical trauma brought about by saws, files, pounding, etc---so just take it easy and let the knee heal and rest.

There is plenty of time to get to that destination called "fully recovered"---but there is no "window of opportunity"---do not let the PT folks bully you into thinking that.

Recovery from a TKR can take upwards to a year---so you just have to be patient and not worry about "Where should I be." Just take recovery one day at a time.

I have no idea why some of these PT's think that after such a traumatic surgery, that you will get to 90* in a week. Do not fret, do not worry, you will get there when your knee is ready.
 

skigirl

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I agree with Tim---just relax. The first two weeks, I spent most of my time in bed with my knee propped up on three pillows.

Elevating your leg to control swelling and pain
Using ice

some folks get rom more easily than others---that is just the way of knees. Some docs make the knee more tight with larger spacers, in my opinion. But--your knee is your knee and now you just need to make peace with it. For now, you need to let your tissues heal. Ice and elevation are the ticker. I will give you our post op reading list--some thing to read to stop the worrying!! The articles are all short.

First are the mantras ....
- rest, elevate, ice and take your pain meds by the clock
- if it hurts, don't do it and don't allow anyone - especially a physiotherapist - to do it to you
- if your leg swells more or gets stiffer in the 24 hours after doing it, don't do it again
- if you won't die if it's not done, don't do it
- never stand when you can sit, never sit when you can lie down, never stay awake when you can go to sleep!

Next is a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) thread.

And then the articles in order of importance .
Group A
The importance of managing pain after a TKR and the pain chart
Myth busting: no pain, no gain
Swollen and stiff knee: what causes it?
Progression of activity for TKRs

Group B
How Long Does Healing Take ......
Chart representation of TKR recovery
Energy drain for TKRs
Elevating your leg to control swelling and pain
Using ice

Group C
Knee Replacement - Where Am I in Recovery?
So What Is It Going to Take? The Five “P’s” of Knee Recovery
Work “Smarter” and not “Harder”
About recovering a knee - from one who knows!
Some suggestions for home physio (PT) and activity progress
Myth busting: The "window of opportunity"

Group D
MUA (manipulation under anaesthetic) and adhesions
It's never too late to get more ROM!
It's Worth the Wait for ROM
Myth busting: on getting addicted to pain meds
Post op blues is a reality - be prepared for it
Sleep deprivation is pretty much inevitable - but what causes it?
 

MCD

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I'm seven weeks out and am now at about 90 ROM or maybe a bit more. I'm not worried about it, it will come.
 

VancouverUSAgal

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yep, way too early to be worrying about the numbers.:rolleyes: Many folks don't even start PT that early (or never do any formal PT at all). I think I was at least 4 weeks out before they even measured. Some PT and OS seem to obsess over the numbers for various reasons. Don't let them make you nervous - there is NO deadline. You might even tell them you don't want to hear the numbers but just want to know if you're making progress, but it's really too soon for anything but rest, icing, elevation, and gentle movements. :ice:
 
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Springsmom83

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Thank you to all. It is comfortable, stable, but swollen. Walking feels good, bending NO.
 

referee54

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Don't let them make you nervous - there is NO deadline.
This is a very strong and valid point. It took our knee or our knees quite some time to get to the point where we needed a TKR or a BTKR. When one considers the amount of trauma done to the knee during surgery, a few months--or a little longer---is not all that troublesome. Just be patient and do not worry about the numbers or the progress.

You will get there!
 

rjrober23

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Numbers are numbers. The knee can't bend very far if it's swollen. Once things calm down, the ROM increases. You can push it and get higher numbers, but they aren't "real". And it just makes more pain and inflammation. So I agree with the gang. Be patient and try not to get bullied by the PT.

Ruthannie
 

tiredwife

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Hi, my husband had his LTKR done May 28th too. Hope your recovery is going as well as his is. He is going forward in little leaps. Slow day and then a little leap the next day. Hang in there, and take care of yourself.
 
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Springsmom83

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Thanks everyone. Has anyone else had problems with blood seeping from the bottom of the scar line? I had had none, not even while taking blood thinners. Today I have had a fairly steady seep at the very bottom, at exactly the spot that I have a bruise.
 

Phil75070

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I had a little bit of drainage at the bottom of my incision for the first 10 days for sure, maybe a few days longer, but didn't have the case where it stopped for a while and picked up again.
 

Jozilla

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It is probably normal but I would check with a moderator. @Josephine @skigirl I don't know if they will get my tag. I am on an iPhone so you may want to post again with your own tag. Good luck!
 

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Thanks everyone. Has anyone else had problems with blood seeping from the bottom of the scar line? I had had none, not even while taking blood thinners. Today I have had a fairly steady seep at the very bottom, at exactly the spot that I have a bruise.
@Springsmom83 ,

Well, you mention a bruise, and then blood seeping. If it continues, or bothers you, please contact your OS. Remember, you are only a week out! Trying to do too much can cause problems. When you feel tightness, that is swelling on the inside. Your body is still healing, and the knee is saying "hey, I have been sawed, cut, had metal placed in me, and I am going to take control!":gaah::no-fin:

The knee is really quite remarkable; it makes its own rules, whether we like them or not.:heehee: Now, if we choose to rest, ice, and elevate, and do gentle exercises, the knee is our friend!:loveshwr::happydance:

How do I know? I was one of the most stubborn people when it came to my knee replacements, but my knees humbled me!:snork:
 

msmechanic58

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I'm three and a half weeks out and just got to 90 on Monday. I was at 67 when I left the hospital. Don't worry and don't rush. OS wanted me at 90 by halfway through week 4.
 
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Springsmom83

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My OS didn't use staples or sutures, just dermabond and tape. The tape came off on Thursday today it just appears that there is a little spot seeping where a scab came off too early. I finally gave up and put a band aid across the spot. Therapist wants me to do light stretching of calf, hams, etc. WOW! It makes everything feel so good.
 
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