BoneSmart® Hip / Knee Replacement Forum
Joint Replacement Patient Advocacy
and Online Community
  1. RATE YOUR SURGEON ON OUR NEW JOINT SURGEON LOCATOR

    Your opinion matters so please click on this announcement to find out how to rate the surgeons you have worked with

    You could also go to the Surgeon Locator via the blue nav bar at the top - find the tab "Surgeon Locator"

    Dismiss Notice

[TKR] Much too young to feel this dang old

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Recovery Area' started by TKRat48, Jun 9, 2019.

  1. TKRat48

    TKRat48 new member
    Thread Starter

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2019
    Age:
    48
    Messages:
    2
    Gender:
    Male
    Country:
    United States United States
    So glad I found this forum. Thanks to all for sharing your experiences!! It really helps me personally to see that what I am going through is ‘normal’.

    I am 48 years old and had my Right TKR on May 28th, 2019. I had been dealing with Stage 4 Osteoarthritis (bone on bone) for over a year. After knee scope, multiple cortisone injections, and a series of Euflexxa Injections, my OS finally recommended TKR. I was very hesitant because I am only 48. Dr said, ideally, I should try to get to at least 50 before have a TKR but it had become a quality of life issue.

    In hospital for 2 nights. One of the first negative experience was nausea/vomiting after surgery (don’t eat too much until your bowels start working). Surgery was at 8:30 am and they had me up out of bed at 6:00 pm that same day. It was scary because I was worried I was going to damage the new knee. But the PT assured me that aside from falling or twisting, the new knee would do everything I wanted it to do. Surgeon was militant about not letting my foot turn to the side. TOES STRAIGHT UP. It hurts but apparently necessary to keep the muscles and tendons properly aligned during healing.

    Biggest issues I’ve had are insomnia (cannot stay asleep), FATIGUE, loss of appetite (I’ve lost 10 lbs since surgery), and depression.

    This experience has been much harder than I was expecting. Simple things I used to now just completely exhaust me. I wanted to surprise my wife this morning by trying to cook a simple breakfast (fried bacon and eggs).......couldn’t do it. I was sitting in my chair, knee iced and elevated, when I found this forum. Reading other people’s experiences has really helped me to understand that my experiences are NORMAL and not weakness. Your postings have helped me understand that the best thing I need to give myself now is time. I need to focus on PT, pain control, and just giving myself a break. This is a major event my body is trying to recover from. All of my bodies ‘focus’ is on healing this shock it is experiencing. I am not going to be able to just bounce back immediately (a misconception I had because of my young age and relative good health before). I am happy to hear that all this I am going through will be worth it. As now that I have had the TKR, there is a light at the end of the tunnel vs. no hope given had I not had the surgery.

    I’m looking forward to reading more of your stories and experiences.
     
    • Like Like x 3
  2. Benay

    Benay senior

    Member Since:
    Apr 13, 2019
    Messages:
    285
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    SoCal
    Country:
    United States United States
    Happy you found the forum, it's a wonderful sanity check. Good luck, you're early days yet, it's going to get better!
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2019
  3. Jockette

    Jockette FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

    Member Since:
    Aug 29, 2017
    Messages:
    11,408
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Delaware
    Country:
    United States United States
    Welcome to Bonesmart!

    I will leave you our Recovery Guidelines. Each article is short but very informative. Following these guidelines will help you have a less painful recovery.

    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
    6. Access to these pages on the website

    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 the 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 the member’s history before providing advice, so please post any updates or questions you have right here in this thread.
     
  4. Tmgrl3

    Tmgrl3 junior member

    Member Since:
    Jun 7, 2019
    Age:
    76
    Messages:
    25
    Gender:
    Female
    Country:
    United States United States
    Hi TKRat48!

    Anxiety and depression. Still having them...sometimes bad. I am 10 weeks out of a bilateral knee replacement. I am 76 years old. I was off pain meds by week 4 and up until then only two tramadol 50 mg daily...but then I started to really walk better move better, and by 6 weeks was raring to go..although insomnia almost every night because I had to wear bilateral knee immobilizers and sleep with these heavy things on my back. Still mostly back sleeping and it’s 10 weeks now. Also nausea is my companion ...sometimes daily, sometimes with breaks. Very little to no appetite. Lost 32 pounds of edema from legs and now 10 more pounds from just eating three healthy very small portions of food, just so I keep fed to heal.

    I do have bipolar disorder and my meds played havoc with even the tramadol but the insomnia sent me off the cliff with depression and anxiety some days. So. I am told this is all “normal.” At my 8 week surgical followup, surgeon said I could drive if I felt ok doing it and I was off and running. I drove everywhere, ran errands, did all the household things, my own care...thankfully my hubby had been doing all of the work till then! But who knew I was doing too much. I had worsening insomnia and now nightly pain with constant radiculopathy and neuropathy pain in both ankles and feet (I had this before but now it was really bad) I understand the bundles of nerves that run behind knees and down legs were being compressed by swelling.

    So I crashed emotionally last Friday, since I told the psychiatrist that all the juggling of my psych meds weren’t helping me sleep. Still getting maybe 3to 5 hours a night going on 10 weeks now. First because I was stuck on my back and now because the pain at night was so bad that I couldn’t find any position to sleep in. But it was all my doing too much for last two to three weeks. So back to doc because I thought I was having a heart attack even though I knew it was a panic attack. (LOL) Doc said go back on tramadol 50 mgjust at night 1 pill, two if wake up in pain before am . Who knew I was doing too much. It felt good . I was exhausted after 5 or 6 hours of standing and running around. I was told it was way too much and didn’t listen. So now...resting all weekend. Taking tramadol bedtime only (I’m sleeping again!) and sleeping on my side!! At least part of the night.

    My age is a factor but if you watch me walk you would never know I had doubles done just 10 weeks ago, but depression, anxiety, nausea and now pain again from overdoing are yelling at me....slow down.

    I read on one website. Knee replacements . The three P’s. Pain (you will have it and it will come and go) PT (do it and don’t overdo it or let anyone, including your PT if they try to have you do something that causes pain...mine doesn’t fortunately and finally PATIENCE....this takes time and all of these symptoms can come and go for several months until everything mends. Healing of the bone and healing of the tissues.

    Hang in there. You WILL feel better but take it easy and be patient and keep moving!!

    I am still thrilled I had them both done at once. Had a hip replaced 10 years ago. That was a piece of cake compared to this double knee.
     
  5. Irish471

    Irish471 senior

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2019
    Age:
    48
    Messages:
    309
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    California
    Country:
    United States United States
    @TKRat48 , welcome! I am 48, too and had my right knee done March 18. You’re in good company. There are quite a few of us in our 40s on here. You’ll be glad you had the surgery soon enough :)
     
  6. newpartial

    newpartial junior member

    Member Since:
    Feb 19, 2019
    Age:
    48
    Messages:
    61
    Gender:
    Female
    Country:
    United Kingdom United Kingdom
    Hi @TKRat48 I am 48 . as well had my knee done about a week after you. My mum was due to come up and help me out with kids and house stuff as hubby works long hours but broke her arm so we are doing everything ourselves.
    I felt ok yesterday and thought ok will do this and that but after about 20 mins just felt totally exhausted. It’s the combination of healing and meds. It’s totally frustrating when you are normally active and rushing about but looking at this site totally normal :) :-) (:
     
  7. Atlas_aus

    Atlas_aus member

    Member Since:
    Mar 31, 2019
    Age:
    55
    Messages:
    182
    Gender:
    Male
    Country:
    Australia Australia
    @TKRat48

    Howdy. We have the same op date, but I had both done.

    I believe the 'age' thing is past its use by date. The replacements are so different to what they were, even 5yrs ago that having to wait to a certain age in the hope you won't have to do it again in later years is just a waste of time.

    As I understand it from my surgeon is that and parts they will wear over time and now just replaceable with new parts, not the whole device which is great news. Quality of life, or lack of it is what we should be concerned with.

    All normal mate although I do wake during the night adjust my position as I am a side sleeper. The other pain in the bum is I stall have a catheter.. Long story.

    True, but the higher level of fitness you have the better off you are, especially at a younger age.

    Just take it as it comes, ice, rest and elevate. Don't try to do too much and take all the little 'wins' as they come. Good luck.
     
  8. Elcee

    Elcee new member

    Member Since:
    Dec 8, 2018
    Age:
    57
    Messages:
    7
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Iowa
    Country:
    United States United States
    Hi TKRat48
    I too was bone on bone and at age 56 was told by my ortho doctor (whom I've known and worked with, as a nurse, for over 16 years) that instead of years I should have TKA in months. I put it off for another year but the leg was starting to bow out more and swelling and pain affecting my daily life, work and sleep I knew it was time. I bit the bullet Nov. 2018 at age 57.

    I'm now 6.5 months out from surgery and continue to improve daily but that 1st month post op was HELL!!! As my PT guy told me IF your thigh had 1000 muscle fibers only 900 of yours are functioning!
    After 3 weeks of using a scarf to lift my leg around because I couldn't even lift foot an inch off floor, with approval from my ortho Dr., I saw an acupuncturist for IN muscle stim as the e-stim PT was applying to outer thigh wasn't helping much!
    HALLEJUIAH for acupuncture! It truly got me going where PT and exercise at home had not. I tend to get some down moods in winter months as it is, so to say I was a little depressed those 1st few months after surgery is an understatement! End of January 2019 I was about 2 weeks away from Dr deciding to manipulate my knee also due to lack of mobility but in a weeks time Dr said I'd made great improvement after using the PT and acupuncture therapies. Lots of crying and doubt that I'd done the right thing panned out to be best thing I could have done.

    Hang in there, it really will get better each and every week. Give yourself time to adjust to new knee and new life after TKA. I'm picking up my new FUJI Absolute bike today for prepping to ride at least 1 day of Iowa's RAGBRAI ride at end of July! ‍♀️
    ElCee
     
    • Like Like x 2
  9. Elcee

    Elcee new member

    Member Since:
    Dec 8, 2018
    Age:
    57
    Messages:
    7
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Iowa
    Country:
    United States United States
    Oh and I also had joined a gym 3 months before having the surgery so my quads could be in better shape to get me through surgery. A coworker of mine had TKR surgery same day I did, she is older, heavier and no where near the shape I was in and she was improving faster but had horrible swelling and bruising to whole leg, where I had only ONE 50 cent size bruise behind knee but worse mobility and average swelling.

    Every knee and post OP healing is different even for the same person having both knees done. Dont waste any worries or time thinking about how you are doing compared to others!!!
    ‍♂️
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. lovetocookandsew

    lovetocookandsew FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

    Member Since:
    Aug 9, 2013
    Age:
    63
    Messages:
    2,740
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Northern California
    Country:
    United States United States
    When I first started having knee problems (after I tore something inside while bowling!) they were still talking about waiting to replace them until you were older due to the longevity of the implant and the certainty of needing a revision when the implant wore out. Now I see more and more people getting them done when they need them, and not being required to be in your 60s before they consider a replacement. It seems to me it's a combination of how long the implants now last and a realization that quality of life is more important, and the younger you are the more time you have to miss out on living your life.

    This recovery is a roller coaster and you're going to have good and not-so-good days, but you're still very early in your recovery. At an average of 52 weeks for full recovery, although by three months you will likely be feeling much better, 2 weeks is a drop in the bucket, time-wise. I hope you read the articles Jockette left you, especially my favorite, the activity progression one. I read that one daily to remind me not too do too much, nor too little at any point in my recovery. Let your wife take care of you for now, and when the day comes that you are able to do your usual daily activities again, thank her with a special meal, or some other special treat. But I am sure taking care of you while you recover is her pleasure, and your full recovery is all the thanks she needs. :)
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Josephine

    Josephine FORUM ADMIN, NURSE DIRECTOR Administrator

    Member Since:
    Jun 8, 2007
    Age:
    77
    Messages:
    84,191
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    The North
    Country:
    United Kingdom United Kingdom
    @Atlas_aus The most common reason for TKR revision is loosening of the implants or infection! Thus your comment is not entirely accurate!
     
  12. winemama

    winemama member

    Member Since:
    Mar 31, 2019
    Age:
    66
    Messages:
    206
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Ohio USA
    Country:
    United States United States
    I was lucky, all the years of working hard, gave me extremely strong legs. The OS said he had trouble getting the muscles spread and getting the knee out. Having strength in my legs has been a God send with recovery
     
  13. Denny39

    Denny39 member

    Member Since:
    Dec 23, 2018
    Age:
    79
    Messages:
    181
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    South Carolina
    Country:
    United States United States
    Good morning @TKRat48. Your launch into this unfamiliar world is almost a carbon copy of mine, except for the age factor. Not much similarity there. Prior to my LTKR December 10, 2018, the most major surgery I had experienced was meniscus repair (both knees, about 6 months apart), and that was nothing. I was walking normally and back up to full speed within a week. I knew this was going to be more than that, so I “generously” allowed myself 3-4 weeks to get going again. I, as it seems the majority of us first-timers do, failed to read the fine print. That’s why, when I discovered Bonesmart, I titled my thread, “Strange New World”. I had no idea what was going on in this new arena. I found Bonesmart while desperately googling for answers to why I couldn’t sleep, had no energy, had no appetite, taste buds were off-line, leg was still blue, constipation still a problem, painful leg-lifts and heel-slides; this definitely wasn’t what I had signed up for! But like you and many others, I was very relieved to discover that it is all “normal”.

    But still, even with the testimonies and assurances of many others, it has its moments of anxiety, doubt, and sometimes depression. AFTER, the fact, I found out that short-term recovery is considered 8-12 weeks, long term recovery is 3-6 months, and full recovery is 1-2 years. At 8 weeks or so I said something like, “I don’t care HOW BAD that other knee is, I ain’t doin’ this again!”. However, now at 6 months, with my repaired knee doing very well, and my other one sliding steadily downward, I am reporting for my pre-op today, and RTKR next Monday.

    As you said, there is a light at the tunnel, and the good news, it is not an oncoming train. It’s the freedom of being able to walk on strong legs again, and that will be of great value for a long time. Even though this is one of the most traumatic surgeries you can experience (One of my therapists said my leg may as well have been run over by a car), there is a 98% success rate. That’s pretty good odds, especially for me, with a pretty firmly established loss ratio of something like 8:1 when gambling.

    Sounds to me like you’re moving steadily in the right direction. But remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
    I have described the initial recovery time as two REALLY, REALLY rotten weeks, followed by two REALLY rotten weeks, followed by two ROTTEN weeks, followed by two MISERABLE weeks. Once those are behind you, you are at the front door of short-term recovery, but moving steadily in the right direction. Hang in there, this will pass, and you will no longer be looking at the light through the tunnel, you’ll be in the full brightness of it.
     
    • Like Like x 3
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. RAD

    RAD junior member

    Member Since:
    May 7, 2019
    Age:
    55
    Messages:
    71
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    New York
    Country:
    United States United States
    Well put! I'm at 4 weeks tomorrow. It has been tough, but doing pretty well. Looking forward to a strong knee!
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. Benay

    Benay senior

    Member Since:
    Apr 13, 2019
    Messages:
    285
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    SoCal
    Country:
    United States United States
    I'm getting close to six weeks out. Looking forward to the miserable :loveshwr:
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Funny Funny x 1
  16. Celle

    Celle FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

    Member Since:
    Nov 19, 2011
    Age:
    77
    Messages:
    32,581
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Country:
    New Zealand New Zealand
    @TKRat48 - How are you getting on? It's been a few days since you posted.
     
  17. Denny39

    Denny39 member

    Member Since:
    Dec 23, 2018
    Age:
    79
    Messages:
    181
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    South Carolina
    Country:
    United States United States
    Good morning @Benay. On the surface, it may seem a bit strange to say “I’m looking forward to being miserable for a couple of weeks”:chinstroke:. But . . . I’m sure that by Monday afternoon, I will also be looking forward to two miserable weeks. Hope you’re progressing well.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  18. Denny39

    Denny39 member

    Member Since:
    Dec 23, 2018
    Age:
    79
    Messages:
    181
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    South Carolina
    Country:
    United States United States
    Sorry, I inadvertently posted that last reply on the wrong thread.
     
  19. Benay

    Benay senior

    Member Since:
    Apr 13, 2019
    Messages:
    285
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    SoCal
    Country:
    United States United States
    Hello @Denny39

    "I have described the initial recovery time as two REALLY, REALLY rotten weeks, followed by two REALLY rotten weeks, followed by two ROTTEN weeks, followed by two MISERABLE weeks. Once those are behind you, you are at the front door of short-term recovery, but moving steadily in the right direction. Hang in there, this will pass, and you will no longer be looking at the light through the tunnel, you’ll be in the full brightness of it"

    Seriously this really strikes a cord with me! I'd like to frame it. I'm at the end of the 2 rotten, heading into the miserable.
     
  20. Denny39

    Denny39 member

    Member Since:
    Dec 23, 2018
    Age:
    79
    Messages:
    181
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    South Carolina
    Country:
    United States United States
    @Benay - Congratulations on your progress to being miserable. I’m 4 days from starting the really, really, rotten, and believe me, I am looking forward to having two miserable weeks. That really sounds weird doesn’t it???:oyvey:
     
    • Like Like x 1

Share This Page

Sponsors
Close X