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Moving Forward On Two New (Conformis) Knees

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Pre-Op Area' started by PoetryChef, Aug 24, 2017.

  1. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef
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    Greetings to all!

    On November 8th and November 10th I will have knee replacements in Columbia, South Carolina. I will travel there from my home in Raleigh, North Carolina. My surgeon will not perform surgery on both knees at the same time in an effort to minimize blood loss. I am a chef by trade and have found my work increasingly difficult as a lack of cartilage in my knees has caused me great pain.

    While I am not looking forward to this part of my journey, I am looking forward to the possibilities going forward.

    Many thanks in advance for your good advice and willingness to share of your own experiences.

    Best regards,
    Sherry
     
  2. jeffm1955

    jeffm1955

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    I too am having a LTKR with a Conformis knee on August 31. Best of luck in your surgeries.

    Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
     
  3. SusieShoes

    SusieShoes Forum Advisor

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    Welcome to BoneSmart, Sherry. Those knee replacements will change your life, just be prepared for an intense recovery period. Every recovery is different, even for each knee. You'll find lots of great support here from people who've undergone the surgery and are at different stages of recovery. We know what you're going through!

    Here's some reading to help you prepare for your new knees and what lies ahead. And of course, ask questions!

    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

    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.
     
  4. Teri59

    Teri59

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    :wave:Sherry. I love the state of South Carolina! I also have some friends that live in Raleigh. When it comes to Bilateral TKR I have read and kept up with a few here on bonesmart that have went thru that and done amazingly well. I believe that you will too.
     
  5. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef
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    @jeffm1955, many thanks for your good wishes. Best of success on your upcoming surgery. One week from today and then it's one day and one step at a time. Good to know that we will eventually get there with a bigger story to tell and share with those coming along behind us. You will do just fine.
     
  6. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef
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    @SusieShoes, pleased to meet you. I'll be one with plenty of questions. You may just end up asking me to stop raising my hand so much. My Shakespeare instructor certainly did. :) Thank you for all the reading material. I continue to pour over the forums here in an attempt to prepare myself for the upcoming two surgeries. I am still trying to process that this is the best case scenario for moving forward in life. I rather like my knees and would prefer to hold on to them but that is not in the cards for me. The pain has intensified to the point that it has affected each part of my world. I am dotting the i's and crossing t's.
     
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  7. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim Forum Advisor

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    Here is some pre-op information for you:

    Longevity of implants and revisions: How long will my new joint last?

    If you are at the stage where you are planning to have surgery but are looking for information so you can be better prepared for what is to come, take a look at these links:
    Recovery Aids: A comprehensive list for hospital and home
    Recliner Chairs: Things you need to know if buying one for your recovery
    Pre-Op Interviews: What's involved?

    Regardless of where you are in the process, the website and app My Knee Guide can help you stay organized and informed. The free service keeps all the information pertaining to your surgery and recovery in one place on your smartphone. It is intended to be a personal support tool for the entire process.

    And if you want to picture what your life might be like with a replaced knee, take a look at the posts and threads from other BoneSmarties provided in this link:
    Stories of amazing knee recoveries


    If you have any questions, fire away - we're here to help.
     
  8. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef
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    @Teri59, I do hope to be one of the ones who does amazingly well. Thank you so much for your vote of confidence. Yes, Raleigh is lovely. The "City of Oaks" in the fall is stunning. I have somehow managed to have a November date for my surgeries (my surgeon is completely scheduled until then) which means I will now not cook Thanksgiving dinner for over a hundred people two straight days in a row and that Christmas and New Year's will be spent at home with my family, my January birthday, not at work-- all a rarity in a chefs' world. I will get there, one moment, hour, day and month at a time. Patience. :)
     
  9. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef
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    @sistersinhim, thank you for the helpful information. Come November 7th I'll certainly be a subject matter expert. Have a lovely day! How rude of me, so pleased to meet you. :)
     
  10. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim Forum Advisor

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    And very nice to meet you, too! It's good that you're getting yourself armed with lots of information before your surgery. I joined 6 months before my surgery. It was comforting to know that my way of no PT or exercise, adopted at least 25 years before coming here, was in line with BoneSmart's guidelines! I've been here ever since!
     
  11. Teri59

    Teri59

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    @PoetryChef it will be a time for you to relax, rest, recuperate and most of heal. You will be like the rest of us in learning how to let others do for you. I am an old country cook myself. I have had to learn to do the healthy style of cooking. :heehee: No fried potatoes in bacon grease and all that great tasting stuff.
     
  12. Josephine

    Josephine NURSE DIRECTOR Administrator

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    BoneSmart's main purpose is to answer questions so don't worry about that.
    Whilst not wishing to dampen your enthusiasm, please also realise that you will not be in charge of your recovery - not in any way. Your knee will be! :wink:
     
  13. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef
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    @Josephine, thank you. I have spent a good amount of time in your forums and see so much honest and good information there. I have already begun to collect items that people have suggested.

    A couple years ago I experienced an emergency total hysterectomy and see the long-term result of such an assault on the body. I was able to do exactly what my surgeon recommended and had an uneventful yet very painful recovery. I expect this to be much worse. I will follow the recommendations to the letter and let my body heal in its own time. I am not looking forward to this but wish it to happen and move forward just the same. I will let my knees lead as they will. I fortunately have twelve weeks of medical leave to help me along. Thanks in advance.
     
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  14. Celle

    Celle Forum Advisor

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    Hello @PoetryChef
    Have you joined the group,
    2017 November Nimbles - Are you having knee surgery in November?

    It's at the top of the Knee Replacement Pre-OP page. Just post your surgery dates there and you will be added to the group. where you'll get acquainted with other people who will be having surgery around the same time as you. They will be your recovery buddies.
     
  15. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef
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    @Celle, thanks! Yes, I joined the November Nimbles. Many thanks. I'll be sure to properly introduce myself to each one.
     
  16. Jajakio

    Jajakio

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    Welcome. I had a single knee replacement with a Conformis knee 7 weeks ago and am doing very well. I'm totally pleased with the conformis knee and hopefully you will be too. My surgeon says the surgeries go quicker and with less blood loss with the custom knees. I was in surgery for less than an hour. I don't know how squeamish you are, but my surgeon William Kurtz does a real time custom Conformis surgery on youtube, start to finish, like a hour and ten minute video. I found it fascinating and gave me a much better idea of what was going to happen to me. Many other doctors have similar videos. I wanted to learn as much as I could, but I can see where some people might not be comfortable watching live surgery. My husband watched 3 seconds and couldn't continue.
    Anyway, any question you have, someone on here has been through and can give you the benefit of their experience. Probably several someones.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2017
  17. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef
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    @Jajakio, so glad to hear that you are doing well at seven weeks. I'll steer clear of surgery videos. I am a wimp.

    Do you happen to know if there are any articles here for caregivers to read? I would like to make sure my family knows what to expect when I am a bit out of it.

    I will have a three and a half hour drive home post surgery. Any suggestions on how to make the journey as knee friendly as possible?

    Many thanks!
     
  18. Celle

    Celle Forum Advisor

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    It's a good idea to let them read all the articles that are for patients to read. I'll give you those in my next post.
    Particularly important are the recovery recommendations and the Activity progression for TKRs
    Families seem to expect you to recover faster than you do and they need to know that this recovery takes a long time - as much as a full year for complete recovery.

    That's a long way!
    • Most people find it is most comfortable if they sit across the back seat, with their leg elevated on pillows.
    • It's useful to have ice packs too, so you can ice your knee.
    • Stop every hour or so, so that you can get out and stretch and walk a little bit, or else you will get very stiff.
    • Do your ankle pumps, to prevent DVT.
    • Make sure that you take adequate medication for your journey and you have some to top up your dose along the way, if a dose will fall due.
    • Expect the journey to take much longer than usual - warn your driver about that.
     
  19. Celle

    Celle Forum Advisor

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    And now, here is the recovery reading. It's a good idea to print off some of the articles for your family to read.
    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. Here is a week-by-week guide for 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.
     
  20. Jajakio

    Jajakio

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    Also, if you have to go that far to go home, ask some questions about medication refills before you leave. I'd never had anything stronger than aspirin before this surgery and I was surprised to find they could not call in a percoset rx for me. My only choices were to run up to surgeons office an hour away to pick it up or have it mailed to me. The rules for opiods seems to be pretty strict in most places and most doctors give very little at a time. Since you are so far from your surgeon, make sure you have ample time to get refills if you need them. I started well ahead of time and got the prescription mailed but it took 3 days. Not a good amount of time if you are running out of painkillers.
     

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