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TKR Muldoh’s TKR journey!

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Muldoh

Muldoh

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@Dizzy we are definitely on the same roller coaster! And I am so glad you reminded me about plastic wrap. I may actually try that because the skin sensitivity drives me crazy too! I can’t sleep with any sheets or blankets against my leg, so this may be the answer. And it really helps to hear that we are together in our struggles...it somehow makes them more manageable :)
 

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@Dizzy we are definitely on the same roller coaster! And I am so glad you reminded me about plastic wrap. I may actually try that because the skin sensitivity drives me crazy too! I can’t sleep with any sheets or blankets against my leg, so this may be the answer. And it really helps to hear that we are together in our struggles...it somehow makes them more manageable :)
Muldoh....I was skeptical, because it seems nothing I do helps, but this REALLY did work!!!. I had very comfortable nights sleep for a change! Will definitely continue this at bedtime. Phew!!!!
 
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Muldoh

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Omg, that’s great @Dizzy!! So you just wrapped the area in plastic wrap? No prep or anything else needed?
 

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Omg, that’s great @Dizzy!! So you just wrapped the area in plastic wrap? No prep or anything else needed?
I had watched the video and the guy suggested putting lotion on the knee first then wrapping. I only wrapped around twice.
 

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@Muldoh
This past week I ventured out on errands for the first time since my bilateral TKR on July 6th. I went to Target for toiletries on Tuesday and by Thursday night I was so swollen I ran a low grade fever! I figured it’d be 15-20 minute trip max. But then my husband asked if I could pick up some grocery items as well. That turned a short trip into a 1.5 hour trip. I was hurting halfway through. I had a hard time sleeping that night and the next night. Luckily my therapist took it easy on me at PT on Wednesday when I told his what I had done. It took until Friday to feel good again!

In addition to my home PT exercises and ADLs, I’ve decided to do some walking outside every day now to try to build up my endurance. Yesterday was 10 minutes. I realize need to work up to those shopping trips!!!! I really want to try riding my bike soon too. I can do both the easy and the hard recumbent bikes at PT, but I’ve been too scared to try my regular bike at home. I’m also too scared to try stepping down stairs normally with my left foot. I can step down normally with my right foot because my left knee is stronger and has a greater range of motion than my right knee. I’ve been practicing stepping down with both feet in PT, so I know I’ll get up the nerve soon.

Slow and steady wins the race right?
 
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Muldoh

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@Mrs. Ciz whatever made you think you could go to target for only 15-20 minutes, lol. If you’re like me it’s impossible to get out of there in under an hour. But I know what you mean, as I was standing there in line last week and feeling like I was just going to drop over. I’m sorry that it set you back so much! i think it’s a good idea to start with the walking as you are doing, especially since we are going back to work in a couple weeks. 10 minutes sounds great, and I think I will start that too. With me never having formal PT, I’ve just been doing the ADLs and using the stationary bike. I try to ride about 15 minutes at a time, maybe about 4 days a week. I’ve also started using my Apple watch for step counting as someone on this blog suggested. I thought it will give my an idea of how many steps I am actually putting on this new knee, and then I can compare activity levels to pain and swelling. And I’m with you when it comes to stairs!! They scare the heck out of me, especially going down! On a good day I can go up one foot per step, but even thinking about going down that way hurts! I guess I should google the practice you are doing in PT. And thanks for your response, it is so helpful to hear what my fellow TKRs are doing to get thru this recovery!! Best wishes
 
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Muldoh

Muldoh

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@Dizzy Thanks for the advice! I will try that Saran wrap tonight!!
 

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@Muldoh
That’s funny about the Apple Watch! Great minds think alike. I just plugged my Fitbit in to charge about an hour ago. I haven’t worn it in months, but I also want to start tracking my steps each day, and I want to track my sleep. The sleep tracking may make me cry. It is getting better each night.

You’re right about Target! It ALWAYS takes longer there than I expect. Seriously, in the check out line I kept desperately looking around for a chair to sit in!

The stair exercise at PT goes like this: you need a wooden box. I started with a 4 inch box and am now up to a six inch box. You step on the box with the right foot (which stays there on top of the box) and then bring the left foot, which is planted on the floor behind the box, up and over the box (without touching the box) planting that left foot on the floor in front of the box. Then turn around and do it the opposite way - left foot on box, right foot steps over the box. I hope this makes sense.
 
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Muldoh

Muldoh

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@Mrs. Ciz thanks so much for the stair exercise, I will give it a go tomorrow! And good luck with the sleep tracker, you are braver than me since I’m afraid to find out how bad it really is :thud:
 
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Muldoh

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So today I am 11 weeks postop, and got to see my OS for a follow up appointment. He started by asking me how I was feeling, and I told him ok, except I was still experiencing soreness, stiffness and swelling. He told me that it was normal at this stage, and would eventually dissipate with time and being kind to my knee. Where have I heard that before??? Thanks to BoneSmart I was already familiar with that mantra!

He also told me that my scar, which is still kind of raised, purple and angry looking, would eventually fade as more healing occurred. He said I could put anything I wanted on it but literature doesn’t seem to support anything making much of a difference...the same advice that I got on this forum!!

But the big surprise came when I asked him about range of motion and extension. That is something I have really worried about since I have done no formal PT at all since surgery. But the measurements came in a 0 for straight leg and about 135 for range of motion!!

I told him how worried I was about this, especially knowing so many others were doing PT, but he told me about an article that recently came out and was published in JAMA, (Journal of the American Medical Association) which stated no long-term difference in outcomes for those who did no formal PT.

He also had a good point about those of us on the younger/more active side who get a TKR (even thro I don’t consider myself younger, lol) . He said we tend to have more complaints because we push ourselves too hard, and that his patients in the older years seem to take it easier and often report back that their knee doesn’t hurt a bit! Something else that seems to make a lot of sense.

So I guess the bottom line is we need to listen to the moderators on this site...Not to push ourselves into more pain, and to give our bodies time to heal! While I realize I am in no way through this journey, and that anything can happen, today was definitely a good day:)
 
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Jockette

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I love your surgeon!! Who is he?
 
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Muldoh

Muldoh

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@Starsfan22 i was lucky with the doc, he works at the same hospital that I do so I had hardly any co-pay, lol. Wishing you a good recovery with your new repIacement!
 
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@Jockette I’m starting to love him too...Although there are days I still curse him out ;)
 
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Muldoh

Muldoh

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@Jockette Carl Deirmengian, part of The Rothman Group, practices at Lankenau hospital, among a few other sites. Told me today that most of the Rothman docs now skip formal PT for most TKR patients.
 

Jockette

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Thanks, that is so good to know. I am always on the lookout for my next surgeon, and I’m looking in the Philadelphia area.

While I know I can take charge of my recovery and do it my way, regardless of the surgeon’s preferred protocol, I will be much happier, and less stressed, if I have a surgeon on the same page as Bonesmart.

Thank you so much for this information!
 
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Muldoh

Muldoh

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@Jockette i would recommend him in a heartbeat! Besides his medical expertise (Philadelphia magazine just picked him as a top doc), he’s a nice guy too :) If you ever come out to meet him, let me know and we can meet for coffee in the hospital cafe!
 

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The surgeon I currently have in mind is also part of the Rothman group. I will definitely keep yours in mind, also.
 

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