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[BILATERAL TKR] MissViv's Recovery

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Recovery Area' started by MissViv18, Dec 2, 2018.

  1. MissViv18

    MissViv18 member
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    Well it has been a long time coming ….

    I am going on seven weeks out and am finally seeing a light at the end of the tunnel.

    Surgery went very well. Hospital and Staff were excellent. Food was very good. Stayed in the hospital for 2 nights with hubby staying with me. The hospital is over an hour from our home.

    First few weeks were a blur. I started PT the Monday after surgery on Tuesday. My OS wanted me to have PT on Friday, the day after getting home but I was sick at my stomach so cancelled.

    My PT is very gentle and listens to me. He asks me how I felt after the last session and if really sore then he does not add anything new. I can't remember my numbers but he says they are very good. I know my ROM is 112-114. I was able to lay my legs flat right after surgery.

    I will say that this has been a hard journey. Much harder than I expected which is why I waited to start posting my recovery. Just a few weeks ago I was regretting having bilateral - it is just so hard. I am still on pain meds with begging my OS. I now am taking Tramadol.

    I did get a ice machine in the hospital and it had an adapter that added the extra pad for the both knees. I used it consistently for at least two weeks but the thing just freezes me to death. I now only use ice packs about 3-4 times a day. They still make me cold which adds to the pain. Have any of you had pain in the groin area? I find that pretty painful especially if I lie flat.

    Sleeping a little better just the last couple of days. I wasn't able to sleep in our bed at the first but now I can sleep there for 4-5 hours before having to get up and walk and then to the recliner. We have an adjustable bed and it feels much better when I raise the head.

    We have a basement entry house and my husband would have to bring the car around to the back door to load me for PT. It was tearing up the yard pretty bad. Now I am able to walk down the 13 basement steps and back up.

    I use a cane when we go out but walk around the house with no aids. Starting to do a little housework.

    I will post more later. Any questions, just ask. I am sure I have left a lot out.
     
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  2. Jaycey

    Jaycey SUPER MODERATOR Moderator

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    @MissViv18 Welcome to the other side. Sorry you have had a rough start. But it does sound like you are making very good progress.
    Sometimes surgeons aren't very good at setting expectations. The early days out can be a rough road. But as you are seeing things get better with time and patience.

    I'll leave your recovery articles here for you to refer to if needed.
    Knee Recovery: The Guidelines
    1. Don’t worry: Your body will heal all by itself. Relax, let it, don't try and hurry it, don’t worry about any symptoms now, they are almost certainly temporary

    2. Control discomfort:
    rest
    elevate
    ice
    take your pain meds by prescription schedule (not when pain starts!)
    don't overwork

    3. Do what you want to do BUT
    a. If it hurts, don't do it and don't allow anyone - especially a physical therapist - to do it to you
    b. If your leg swells more or gets stiffer in the 24 hours after doing it, don't do it again.​

    4. PT or exercise can be useful BUT take note of these
    5. At week 4 and after you should follow this Activity progression for TKRs

    The Recovery articles:
    The importance of managing pain after a TKR and the pain chart
    Swollen and stiff knee: what causes it?
    Energy drain for TKRs
    Elevation is the key
    Ice to control pain and swelling
    Heel slides and how to do them properly
    Chart representation of TKR recovery
    Healing: how long does it take?
    Post op blues is a reality - be prepared for it
    Sleep deprivation is pretty much inevitable - but what causes it?

    There are also some cautionary articles here
    Myth busting: no pain, no gain
    Myth busting: the "window of opportunity" in TKR
    Myth busting: on getting addicted to pain meds

    We try to keep the forum a positive and safe place for our members to talk about their questions or concerns and to report successes with their joint replacement surgery. While members may create as many threads as they like in a majority of BoneSmart's forums, we ask that each member have only one recovery thread. This policy makes it easier to go back and review history before providing advice.
     
  3. Teecup

    Teecup member

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    Wow @MissViv18! You're progress is amazing to me for seven weeks! :wowspring:

    Sounds like you have a wonderful PT, and what an awesome ROM! Whatever you're doing, it's certainly working for you.

    I found that placing a heating pad on my groin area while laying down helped immensely. I think it was just tight muscles for me, and that heat helped it relax. You might try that to see if it helps.

    Some of those ice machines are really polar! I have one, too, and still use it several times a day and through the night. My heating pad comes in handy to warm me up. I also use the homemade ice packs with the water and alcohol, but those suckers are the coldest of all! My favorite cold treatment are the three gel packs I have. They're not overly freezing as long as I put a tea towel around them, they're very pliant, and they last a long time.

    I'm at 10 weeks for my right knee and almost five months for my left (which was MUA'd when my right knee was replaced) and I'm still on Oxy two to three times a day and I don't care! It helps me do the things I need to do. Recovering from this surgery and getting back to normal is hard and painful enough as it is; I'm not about to add to my pain and suffering by giving them up until my body is ready to. As long as my doc keeps refilling the script, and I have pain without them, I'm going to take them!

    You're doing great! Looking forward to following your journey forward!
     
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  4. forbesy

    forbesy Sr Bonesmartie

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    Well done MissViv18 you are doing well a bilateral is always hard and I take my hat off to you. Finding a comfy position in bed is always a test at night and I still use my pillow between my legs which really helps. I still use a cane when I go out as well more for security and if I am feeling slightly weak.
     
  5. MissViv18

    MissViv18 member
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    Thanks for the encouragement, I need it. It IS quite a journey!!

    Went out to a restaurant today for the first time since surgery (Cracker Barrel). Felt good to get out, it was in the 60's here today and going to get cold again this coming week. My knees do NOT like cold (nor the rest of my body).
     
  6. Txmomgmom3

    Txmomgmom3 senior

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    Oh I'm so glad you posted! I have been wondering how it all went for you! So glad to see you are getting there. Your ROM is awesome!!!
     
  7. beachy

    beachy post-grad

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    Good to hear from you! I was thinking of you.
    Sounds like your recovery is goid. We're 5 days apart, but I wasn't as brave as you...just 1 knee.
    Good luck going forward and keep us posted!
     
  8. SusieShoes

    SusieShoes FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Oh, I’m so happy to hear from you @MissViv18! :loveshwr: Yes, bilateral can be a bit... rough, especially at first. What’s wonderful is when you start to feel and do better, and you have both knees replaced, because then you’ll be ever so happy you don’t have to go through either surgery or the recovery again!

    I’m glad you’re doing stairs all right. Stairs are good for helping get your muscles stronger as time goes on. Not to mention they make getting around a lot easier. Keep being sensible with PT and rejoice in that great ROM! You’re off to a great start. Try to be patient. There’s lots of recovery to go, but the good news is it will get better and better.
     
  9. schpooko

    schpooko member

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    Hi, MissViv18. Great Update I am sorry you had a rough beginning to this BTKR journey but things have certainly turned around for. This TKR journey can certainly be a roller coaster. Your ROM is fantastic :wow:. And it will only keep getting better and better!!! :yay::happydance::dancy:

    I also take my cane when I am walking on the outside and I have been using those scooters in big stores like Walmart, Shoprite etc...

    I tried to take the Oxy after surgery but it did not agree with me so I went straight to tramadol and I did fine. It worked quite well as I followed the schedule that Josephine had listed here on the forums. I added tylenol with the tramadol and it was a great source of pain control. Ask Josephine for the chart she has regarding tramadol. It might work well for you.

    Great to hear from you and speedy recovery!
     
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  10. MissViv18

    MissViv18 member
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    I'm having some itching now with the pain medication. I itched in the hospital when taking Percocet and they switched me to Hydrocodone 7.5 mg. That worked good. On 11/20 they changed it to 5 mg. and then on 11/30 they added the Tramadol 50 mg. My OS wants me to take the Tramadol first and Hydrocodone as a backup.

    One is making me itch really bad. Taking Benedryl for the itching. I guess it is the Tramadol since I have been taking the Hydrocodone with no problems. I will call the Dr. tomorrow.

    I'm trying not to take too much pain meds but last night I took 2 Hydrocodone at 8:00 pm and went to bed only to wake up at 10:00 pm in pain. I got up and iced for an hour and took a Tramadol and went back to bed and slept well.

    Wish I could get off the pain meds.
     
  11. beachy

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    Me too with getting off the meds. I'm taking more Tylenol and less oxy now. Last week I needed the oxy more. You are still early especially with btkr. Each week should be better. If you stay away from the darn ODIC.
     
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  12. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    When waking up in pain like that, I found if I rode my recumbent bike for only about 5 minutes my knee would settle down. If you don't have the bike, maybe just walking around a bit will help yours.
     
  13. MissViv18

    MissViv18 member
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    I bought a bike from Wal-Mart on-line Black Friday and have not received it yet. Supposed to be here tomorrow but I haven't heard anything yet.
     
  14. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Start the bike very slowly and see how your knees react to it. The first time should be no more than 5 minutes.
     
  15. MissViv18

    MissViv18 member
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    That is what I am doing at PT. The first few times I could only rock the pedals back and forth but now I can do complete rotations and it makes my knees feel good. Gets rid of the tightness.

    The bike is here at Wal-Mart. Just have to go and get it and hubby assemble it.
     
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  16. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    You'll love having a bike at home!
     
  17. MissViv18

    MissViv18 member
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    PT measurements for ROM today, 115 left side and 113 right side. Doing well I think at 7 weeks!
     
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  18. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Doing great for 7 weeks!
     
  19. Txmomgmom3

    Txmomgmom3 senior

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    That's awesome!
     
  20. MissViv18

    MissViv18 member
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    Really not feeling well today …. I think I overdid it yesterday and really did not do too much! We put the bicycle together with the help of brother and sister-in-law and I was up and down a lot instead of resting with legs up. Then we went out to eat last night although I was in pain and had to take a pain pill.

    Last night was HELL with pain all night. Had to take 3 pain pills to get any sleep and am still feeling bad this morning. Swelling in knees and feet is really bad but I have iced, iced, iced and elevated.

    Going to rest today, a lot, this coming Tuesday is the 8 week post op date and I was hoping to be a lot better.
     

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