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New member, new knee, need help

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faith

junior member
Joined
Mar 15, 2008
Messages
46
Location
United States
Hi all, my name is Faith, I am 48 yrs old, and I had TKR on Feb14. I feel so blessed to have found this site, I am in tears,
First of all, the surgeon sprained my ankle during the surgery. I've been told that this is pretty common, and happens when the are manipulating the new parts. But PT has become hell, my foot & ankle hurt more than my knee.
I have only reached 90 degrees bending, which is what I had before surgery.
I've just been cleared for outpatient PT, so all I've had was 2 weeks of home therapy since being discharged.
My boss is freaking that i am not back to work yet, and I have no Idea of my legal rights. It is a desk job and I have been working at home, but sitting for long periods of time with my leg down is miserable.
Bottomline, I need a place to vent with others who understand.
Thank you for hearing me.
Faith
 

gatiger

graduate
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
866
Location
Warner Robins, GA.
Faith you have found the right place. I'm sorry to hear about your troubles, all I had was a knee, so I know it has to be rough with your extras. There are lots of caring people here, so feel free to let it out. Welcome to the board, May the Lord bless you and keep you and give you Peace.
 

jb94102

member
Joined
Feb 13, 2008
Messages
160
Age
65
Location
Oakley,IL USA
Hi ya Faith so glad you have found us all hear all the folks here are wonderfull people and have helped me alot .Im so sorry about your ankle ouch !!!! I had my knee done 2/22 all i know is eveyone is different hun you will get more ROM as time goes on i proise ya .My goodness as far as your boss goes i think he needs to be educated on a TKR he as no idea of the things your going through you have my sympathy hun... ill put you in my prayers and WELCOME to our group HUGGGGGGGS from ILLINOIS .JIM :O)
 
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faith

junior member
Joined
Mar 15, 2008
Messages
46
Location
United States
Well, my first visit with my surgeon since being discharged is coming up this Monday.
I think I'm just alittle blue today, and the weather is about to change again here in Baltimore so I'm feeling like a marching band is playing rehearsing in my knee. But heck, we had that before surgery.
The one thing they say about Maryland is "that if you don't like the weather, wait 20 mins, it will change".
Thanks for the support,
FAith
 

jb94102

member
Joined
Feb 13, 2008
Messages
160
Age
65
Location
Oakley,IL USA
oh faith the blues will come and go thats for sure i have never in my life cryed so much over little things nothing big really i guess we need to understand we have had MJOR surgery and it will take its toll just hang in there hun it wil get better i promise you :O)
JIM
 

Sue

junior member
Joined
Oct 11, 2007
Messages
78
Location
United States
My boss is freaking that i am not back to work yet, and I have no Idea of my legal rights. It is a desk job and I have been working at home, but sitting for long periods of time with my leg down is miserable.

Faith
Faith, I'm glad you found this site. I also worked at home very soon after my TKR in October. At first I could not sit with my leg down at all, so I set myself up to work in bed with a laptop and one of those breakfast-in-bed type trays that sits over your lap. When I did start working at a desk or table again, I was usually elevating and icing my knee while I worked.

It definitely sounds like your boss needs some information about TKR recovery. I don't think most people go back to work until about 6 weeks, and often they go back part-time at first.

I was fortunate in this regard because my editing job is part-time and I almost always do my work from home, anyway. I have to go in to the office once a week to drop off and pick up work. Fortunately my husband was able to do this for me for a while, and then when I could drive again, my coworkers were very accommodating, even bringing my work out to me in the parking lot so I didn't have to walk into the building.

Good luck! I hope you can find some way to reduce the stress. You have enough to deal with, just getting better, without work worries!

Sue
 

Pattipoo

post-grad
Joined
Dec 3, 2007
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Age
63
Location
North Carolina
Country
United States United States
Faith...welcome!!!...take my word on this...I went back at 4 weeks. Looking back, I would have waited at least 2 more weeks. It was rough, I'd come home crying every evening. I'm an independant gal and I go full steam ahead - let me tell you where it got me - Dr's ordered couch rest for the entire weekend. Don't overdo - and like Beach and the other gals keep telling me "LOOK AFTER YOURSELF - NOBODY ELSE WILL!"

When you're feeling blue...this is the place to be. When you're feeling happy...this is the place to be! When you're feeling ROWDY, THIS is the place to be..

So happy to have you here!!
 

beachcomber

post-grad
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Feb 13, 2008
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62
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Welcome Faith,
I am so glad you found this site. It has been a lifesaver for many of us! Feel free to come here and vent your frustrations, cry when you are blue, and rejoice at the triumphs(and they will come!). We've all been there and are mostly still working through the process. This is a unique group because we *really* do understand like no one who hasn't "been there-done that" can.

Listen to your body, take care of yourself and don't let anyone push you too hard. I went back to work at 8 weeks and have a teaching job that requires me to be on my feet almost all day on concrete floors. It has been 3 weeks now and I am barely surviving the days-- especially the end of the week.

For legal rights check out the Federal Family Medical Leave Act. "Family" covers you, too, and I believe there is protection there for you-- seems like I remember something about 12 weeks.....

Best of luck to you!


PS. Spraining the ankle is not uncommon, huh? Glad I didn't know about that before my KR. Just another things to worry about. Yikes!
 

gatiger

graduate
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
866
Location
Warner Robins, GA.
FMLA requires 1250 hours in the last 12 month period or one year of employment. This must be requested in writing, there is a specific form, and OKed by employer. After FMLA has been granted, you cannot be fired and when you return to work, you must be placed in your same position as before. This does not give you pay while you're out, that comes from your sick/vacation time, but it does hold your job for 12 weeks. This is compliments of my wonderful wife, she knows this stuff. That is all.
 

referee54

omega
Joined
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Faith---are you aware of the AA's creed "One Day At A Time"? That is what it is like to have a TKR---you ride the roller coaster one day at a time. IT will take a while---up to a year---to get things back in order to what they are supposed to be---just sit back and enjoy the ride!

Tim C.
 

Rowdy66

graduate
Joined
Feb 18, 2008
Messages
674
Location
United States, SOUTHERN ARIZONA
Sorry you are having a rough time, but the good news is you have found the right place to come for help. As for your employer you need to go to the FMLA web site. Or maybe you would find them looking up federal labor laws. The way I read it you are guaranteed, ny law, six months of unpaid family medical leave. Now, you DO need to read this and take the parts that apply to you. My husband is taking time off from work under FMLA to help me when I first get home. He has been at his job way longer than a year and it is a State position and there are over 100 employees, not that I know if that makes any difference but you know how anything is interpreted that is written by the government. I would definitely find out what my rights were though if I were you. You are going to need to take care of yourself. Hang in there. Rowdy
 

Doug

alpha
Joined
Dec 28, 2007
Messages
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65
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Florida
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Faith,
Along with all of the others, welcome. I had my TKR on 2/17, so we are real close. I've commented several times about the impact of the weather on the new knee. Today in Tallahassee Fl. it is 82. We went to the beach. What a difference the warm temperature is. Hang in there and join our chats. We have a blast and get way off topic. Listen to pattipoo, she is crazy but gives good advise.
 

Skeet

supremo
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66
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Oregon
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Female
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United States United States
Welcome, Faith. I feel for you, dear. We've all been where you are now and it will get better. You don't need to even be THINKING about work right now. I work at a desk and I had my surgery on 12-17 and went back 4 hours a day 2-18, working from home. It was really hard. Then on 3-3 I went back full time, some at home, some in the office. I am totally exhausted after a day in the office. It's very hard and tiring. Trust your doctor and he/she will help you determine the best time to go back. My doctor was concerned about me going back when I did. He felt maybe 4 hours 2-3 days a week would have been better. If I had to go into the office I would agree with him.

Tears and blues... I still have them. Went shopping with my youngest as he needed new jeans, shoes, etc. and by the time we got home I was in tears. Just tired out, that's all. No pain or anything, just exhaustion and I'm at 13 weeks, so you are doing just fine. It takes time and most of us are impatient - I know I am.

God bless you and give you comfort and strength, dear. We're here for you 24/7; from the UK to New Zealand and everywhere inbetween!

Skeet
 

Doug

alpha
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Faith,
I did forget to mention that Skeet is right up there with Patti in the sanity department.
If they both get loose at the same time look out!!
 

Josephine

FORUM ADMIN, NURSE DIRECTOR
Administrator
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Nothing much to add here - is all been said. Just welcome to the forum and make yourself right at home!!
 

Newwoman

senior
Joined
Feb 20, 2008
Messages
250
Location
Chillicothe, Ohio USA
Dear Faith,
I understand where you're coming from totally. I am 9 weeks post op and can predict the weather better than the weatherman. I thought I didn't have to worry about this after the surgery but the pt says it is still healing in there and after it is healed I won't be able to predict any longer.
I don't think any of us really knew what we were getting ourselves into before our surgery but we sure know now don't we?
The people here are great and will lift you up and make you laugh and keep you in their prayers all at the same time. Hang in there kiddo and we will all get through this together.
Cathy
 

Doug

alpha
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Versatile, that's what I would call us. We can laugh, cry, get depressed, straighten up,
and pray about someone in one breaths.
Most importantly, and in all seriousness, if you reach out on this forum, someone will be there to do all of the above with you. I know, they have done it for me.
 

summerwind

junior member
Joined
Feb 22, 2008
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27
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Seattle, WA
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Male
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United States United States
We all go through the journey on separate paths but we cross the finish line together and the support from this forum helps greatly..

It seems there are several milestones along the away. Some pass them quicker that others.

My experience..again everybody goes down this path at different rates

First week home was elevate and ice. The challenge was to get the swelling down and lifting my right leg. It was still like a piece of meat that was just laying around in bed. Now where did I leave my pain pills....

Second week was first PT and get the staples out. PT was not fun but the journey had started. Staples out felt good.

Weeks 3 through 6.. PT was working on ROM and strength. Was able to go all the way around on the exercise bike..Yahoo!! Watched "newbies" come in to PT for their first appointment and I was amazed at how much progress I had really made. It seems that progress is inch by inch and not feet by feet. You don't know how far you have come until you watch someone else start the journey.

Month 3... Am walking the dogs and driving (had my right knee done so in the USA that was the one that I use to drive). Still get stiff if I sit for a long time.
Sleep is getting better, less pain meds required. Have good ROM.

Starting to work on getting my stamina back. Goal is to get ready for a trip at the 6 month mark

Sooo...You will be fine in time. As you go through the journey share your thoughts and concerns here. The support group here REALLY helps as you progress throught the recovery process.
 

1jt@atime

Sr Bonesmartie
Joined
Mar 12, 2008
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58
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Welcome Faith! I am 47 and live in N VA so not so far away from you. Be patient with the recovery though I know it's even harder when you get an unexpected injury from the surgery. It seems surgery can do this to a lot of us. For me, it was the lower back, actually tailbone/hip area, that got aggravated. I can't blame the surgeon as it just seems like my problem was back there brewing around and waiting for the right moment to show it's ugly face.

I am 5+ months into this and still have some knee pain and stiffness but overall very happy. It takes a LOT of time to get there but you will. Keep that leg up and good luck with the boss!
Karen
 

referee54

omega
Joined
Dec 21, 2007
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64
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Northern Part of the Buckeye State
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Faith---I had a bi-lateral TKR done on 11/08/07. I didn't go back to teaching until 1/03/08---almost 8 weeks...this will be a long process, and you had major surgery---you need to give your body a chance to heal and to rest up. I would say that six weeks is the quickest that you could return---and you will be tired---par-time, maybe? At 8 weeks, my legs were still stiff, but I could do it. Hang in there, remember, your body didn't get this way overnight---you had a while to get your knees to where they didn't copperate with you; it will take a while to get yourself back in "game shape."

Tim C.
 
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