TKR Not sure how to feel...

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micha

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Hi - I had tkr Sept 24th...taking pain meds about every 5-6 hours, do my pt exercises about 5x week including 15 minutes on my stationary bike, sleep and elevate as much as possible. I'm just wondering if I'm expecting too much of myself or what. I get easily down during the day, feel isolated most of the time because I can't get out much and stay out without pain and swelling, I can't go back to work yet, and I think most of the people in my life expected me to be on the go by now. I'm not on the go! Is there a site for good exercises (I'm uninsured so I can't pay for PT), is there a progression I can learn about? Thanks for input.
 

Nyland

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Oh my! Are you Super Woman? 5 times a week, plus the bike? You make me feel ashamed.
 

speccybecky

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Yes, you are expecting too much! Sounds like you are doing a lot. Can you try and walk outside for a short time just to get a change of scene. I am sure everyone, including me, expected me to have a much quicker recovery. It takes as long as it takes. About 8 weeks was my very worst time, I thought I'd never get better and cried....a lot!
 
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micha

micha

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Really? You are so sweet - and I am so screwed up because I think I'm taking opionions from the wrong people - friends who have never had this surgery - they are driving me nuts with being so underwhelmed with my recovery and until I found this site today I haven't known who to go to for a reality check! I am really fighting depression every day so i thank you!
 
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micha

micha

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I think getting out on my own is good advice - I'll go down to the park today just for the change of scenery! :)
 

Nyland

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Yes, taking short walks helps to lift the spirits. I, too, cried, so much. I was in such a funk. I vented here, and it helped. We understand, we care, and we are here for you. I ice and elevate every night. Take care and glad that you found us.
 

Titianlady

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Oh, Micha, sweetheart, we have all been right where you are. Most of us here have cried, felt down and isolated, and thought we would never be 'normal' again. Please hang in dear one. Ii cried for no reason,( but there really are reasons we feel down and cry..just look in the library section here on the forum, and you will see just why) I was feeling lonely,couldn't do the things I wanted to do, and felt like it would never end. BUT IT DID!!

The people we love sometimes just don't understand. They don't realize what a major surgery this really is, and how long it takes to recover. Sometimes WE don't realize that either. I know the days can feel endless, and it seems time is just creeping by.
But, take heart, it WILL get better.

Remember, you have all of us here whenever you need us!! WE understand firsthand.

Here is a big (((((((HUG))))))) for you dear heart. We understand. :friends:
 

speccybecky

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We all understand how you are feeling. It gets a bit old to other people who think you should be better by now.
It is uppermost in your mind and is all you want to talk about ,we understand and we are here to listen. Even now 9 months later I want to talk about it to everyone.
It is hard to learn patience but you are getting there.
 

vicki c

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Welcome Micha: I am a week ahead of you with my second TKR. This surgery is a difficult one and the recovery is long. You can expect gradual improvements over months, with the six month mark being sort of a landmark, when you can say you feel almost like yourself. Don't let friends and family get you down because they have not been through the trama that your knee has suffered. My relatives still don't get it after my two replacements. You will experience ups and downs along the way. The members, here, will reassure you that you are doing just fine and the administrator will be along soon with some reading and sage advice for you.
Depression is common, but we'll be there to boost you up! My personal advice is that you go to the local pool, if you have one, and walk in the shallow end at a normal pace for a while and then bend your knee and let it float to the top as you walk (15 to20 min. per session) I started this at 4 weeks and it has been more helpful than anything I have done for either of my replacements.
I'll be thinking of you.
 
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micha

micha

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You have all been more helpful and supportive than I can express! I thought I was all alone in this and clearly I am not! I am going to the park this afternoon and will check for a pool I can use-I have one but it's freezing! :) Again, thank you so much!
 

reetpteet

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One of the hardest things is that as soon as you look 'normal' people expect that you ARE NORMAL ........... defo NOT the case. Can't tell you how much patience it takes. good to share your feelings on Bonesmart x:friends:
 
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I remember when my husband had open heart surgery a few years ago. It was in the midst of a cold, dreary winter, and he was stuck at home. I came home one night from work and he seemed almost weepy. I asked him if he was depressed. He said why wouldn't I be depressed. I can't go anywhere, I hurt, etc. I think this is to be expected with any major surgery. I just don't think people think gettting your knee operated on is a big surgery. I have had several people ask me if I would spend 1 night in the hospital or some ask if I will go home the same day. People just don't realize how serious this is. I am sure I have no idea as I haven't been through it yet, but this forum I think has better prepared me for the experience as a whole.
 

Dhare63

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Hi Micha and welcome to Bonesmart! So glad you found us, as you will find support and comfort during these very challenging times.

Until you have the surgery, it's hard to believe how difficult recovery is. I was in complete denial and thought I would bounce right back really quickly. I was never more wrong in my life! Your bones and muscles have been cut, the leg has been manhandled, and your poor body is doing everything it can to heal. You will feel drained of all energy and feel depressed because you are overwhelmed. This is all normal!!

I know your family and friends think you should be all better by now. It's important to be direct and set their expectations straight that this will take months, upwards of a year to be well. That way if your recovery progresses more quickly, they will be pleasantly surprised, and so will you. You also need to manage your expectations that recovery is different for each person.you are unique and your recovery cannot be compared to others. I fell into that habit, it's not helpful, believe me!

So, hunker down, take it slow, ice, elevate, take your pain meds and don't worry about too much other than getting a lot of rest. And read the articles that the moderators will post. There is so much good information that will help you as you go through this. Post your questions, concerns, and frustrations. This is the most compassionate group of people I have never met! I would have lost my mind without this site and the unbelievable outpouring of support!

Be well,

Dawn
 

jd24448

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Hang in there sweetie...I just had my trk done on August 21, 2012 and getting ready to do the other one in a few weeks...no I am not healed but this way I will get them both out of the way and hopefully be ready for spring...I was the one who expected too much too soon...it takes it's own time...this group has some great advice..Hugs
 
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micha

micha

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Oh you are so brave to do the second one so soon! I hope it's very successful. It is hard not to expect too much too soon...but reading here has really helped me. Take care!
 

maryo52

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You can exercise smart to run a marathon, win at tennis, ride 60 miles, etc. But total knee replacement recovery is not a fitness issue. If you got into an auto wreck, would you get out jogging the next day to get better? Your soft tissues got cut, manipulated and re-sewn. Oh my, it's healing time, and we all have our own rate which is determined not by the ortho or PT or ourselves but OUR KNEE.

I hear you about the isolation and feeling down and the well-meaning comments of friends and others that make you feel inadequate. Oh boy, hated it. Come on here and you'll get the kind of understanding and support you need.
 

Josephine

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Hello, Micha and welcome to BoneSmart. You have been listening to the wrong people, people who thing knee replacement is little more than having your tonsils out! It's a whole different thing that they can possibly imagine, so please don't set your standards by what they think you should or shouldn't be able to do.

You need to read these bullet points and articles carefully and thoroughly. They hold the key to your recovery and your ability to have a GOOD recovery

- rest, elevate, ice and take your pain meds by the clock
- if it hurts, don't do it and don't allow anyone - especially a physiotherapist - to do it to you
- if your leg swells more or gets stiffer in the 24 hours after doing it, don't do it again
- if you won't die if it's not done, don't do it
- never stand when you can sit, never sit when you can lie down, never stay awake when you can go to sleep!

The importance of managing pain after a TKR and the pain chart
How Long Does Healing Take ......
Chart representation of TKR recovery
Energy drain for TKRs
Elevating your leg to control swelling and pain
Using ice
Myth busting: no pain, no gain
Swollen and stiff knee: what causes it?
Progression of activity for TKRs

Knee Replacement - Where Am I in Recovery?
So What Is It Going to Take? The Five “P’s” of Knee Recovery
Work “Smarter” and not “Harder”
About recovering a knee - from one who knows!
Some suggestions for home physio (PT) and activity progress
Myth busting: The "window of opportunity"

MUA (manipulation under anaesthetic) and adhesions
It's never too late to get more ROM!
It's Worth the Wait for ROM
Myth busting: on getting addicted to pain meds
Post op blues is a reality - be prepared for it
 
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micha

micha

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Wow! This is really the best day I have had since surgery - reading everything you have all posted, totally taking it easy today and accepting this is going to take time has made a huge difference! I wish I had looked for you all sooner! I will read the articles above, follow the bullet points, and give myself a break! Thank you all so so much! xo
 

SoCal

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Hi Micha - I had my LTKR on 9/25 and I am still taking pain meds, resting, elevating and icing. I am doing my exercises twice a day and doing PT 3 times a week. Using a cane and I don't feel comfortable going without the cane when out. I have to keep reminding myself we are each different in our recovery and look at my progress by the week and not the day. I have a loving and understanding husband and I still get depressed about being home alone and not feeling like I am where I "wanted" to be by this point (walking unassisted). I stop and remember where I was 3 weeks ago and the progress I have made. Keep your chin up and keep us posted on how you are doing.
:angel:
 
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micha

micha

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Hi SoCal! Thanks! I had a pretty good night - using less pain meds at night :) Today I have to go a few times so I'm going to save my exercises and bike until tmw...I'm going to do stretches wherever I am though and hope everyone doesn't think I'm a freak - oh who cares! lol This site is teaching me to really pay attention to my knee instead of trying to run the show. I can tell already my swelling is less and I'm being rewarded with less pain. Now I have to pace and not beat up my knee for doing so well! OK I hope everyone has a great day and thank you!!! :thankyou:
 
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