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TKR Painful Recovery So Far

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DOCCUKE

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I think mine is pretty PO'd!!

I am at the point where my surgeon's advice means very little to me! I believe he is probably a good technical surgeon as far as getting the TKR done. But once he has stitched me up & is all done, he is ALL DONE!!
 
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DOCCUKE

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Curiosity question. Have any Of you that had a TKR had leglifts while laying on your stomach? My PT Friday after a long evaluation she determined that my strength was great for every move except that!

Had me lay on my stomach hold my leg tight and do a reverse leg lift. She then pushed down & was easily able to push my leg down. I definitely did not have much strength in that situation but I am wondering if anyone does??

Any thoughts ?

Thanks
DOC
 

Jockette

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she determined that my strength was great for every move except that!
I was never asked to do that, and I don’t care if I can or not.

She said your strength is great, leave it at that.

Did they discharge you?
 

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i have, I think twice. The last time was Thursday when they discharged me from PT. I was able to keep my leg up as she pushed but she said I need to work on my glutes still
 
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DOCCUKE

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No, she gave me a new PT to do. While standing and using a chair for balance lift my leg back, hold for 2 seconds & repeat . 3 sets of 10 reps

She wants me back this Monday and Friday. She felt this would help my pain, but also said that if it does not improve my pain by Friday I should go back to the doctor.

I don't understand why the doctor had no interest in doing an x-ray when I was there last Monday. I am beginning to wonder if the implant worked loose
 
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DOCCUKE

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Hi Sondrals
I definitely did not have much strength for that particular move, just not convinced it particularly matters. Interesting that they did do it with you as well
 

Jockette

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I think part of you’re pain is from the PT you are doing. The other part is because you had a major surgery that caused a lot of trauma to your knee and it still has a lot of healing to do.

What you need is time, not more PT. You get plenty of movements for your knee in your normal day, with all you do, going to work and walking your dog.

Your implant is most likely fine. It’s your soft tissue that is still upset. Stop stressing that soft tissue with unnecessary PT activities. Live your life, use your knee as you go about your daily activities and let Time take care of the rest.
 
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sondrals

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@DOCCUKE i wasn’t super great at it but I was able to hold it up while she pushed down on it. Supposedly it’s glute strength but heck if I know the point in it
 

kneeper

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Curiosity question. Have any Of you that had a TKR had leglifts while laying on your stomach? My PT Friday after a long evaluation she determined that my strength was great for every move except that!

Had me lay on my stomach hold my leg tight and do a reverse leg lift. She then pushed down & was easily able to push my leg down. I definitely did not have much strength in that situation but I am wondering if anyone does??

Any thoughts ?

Thanks
DOC
I may have been shown that one related to other issues and general muscle strength, but I don't think it was a TKR one.
 
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DOCCUKE

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Hi Jockette
I do not recall who, but someone on this thread had commented that some of this is just luck! Some folks heal up fast & some do not. My main concern at this point is that my pain is just soft tissue pain like you say which will eventually heal & not the implant coming loose.

As I am laying in bed having just woken up I am on my back with my legs straight out and my left knee, the one with the TKR, has a stabbing pain. Near the center vertically and slightly to the right horizontally

This is how it is every morning. It still wakes me multiple times every night.

A number of folks have told me one day I will wake up & find I have turned the corner & the pain will be drastically reduced. I sure hope that is true because this mess is wearing me down!

Have a great Sunday

DOC
 

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Have you tried elevating your legs at night while you sleep? I still do that. My hospital sent an big elevating wedge home with me and I still use it all night! The wedge gave my knee a slight bend which feels so much better than keeping it straight. I was always a side sleeper but I’ve come to love sleeping on my back with my legs up on the wedge. My leg relaxes on up on the wedge. I also fall asleep much faster than when I used to sleep on my side.

I do not recall who, but someone on this thread had commented that some of this is just luck! Some folks heal up fast & some do not.
I do believe this as there are so many different experiences.

There is probably always a chance an implant could be loose, but I really think it’s not very common. 3 months post op is way too early to think this. My recovery was exceedingly slow my entire first year. Things finally began to improve in the second year. I am now more than halfway into my third year, and some things are still improving.

In case I’ve never shared this with you, I’ll give you my “cookie theory”:


Recently I compared this recovery to baking cookies. My chocolate chip cookies take 12 minutes to completely bake. If I take them out earlier, at 2 minutes, 4, 8 or whatever, they will only be partially baked, and not all that tasty, because they’re not done yet.

The same is true of our knee at 2 months, or 3 months, etc. It needs time to finish healing.
 

Jockette

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My wedge is wearing out and I don’t know where to get another just like it. I even called the hospital and they quickly told me I couldn’t buy one from them. Short conversation and I could tell the person on the phone didn’t care.

Many of our members like/love the Lounge Doctor. You can get it on Amazon. Here is a link to some Recovery Aids. The Lounge Dr. is listed there, way down, so keep scrolling.

Here are some tips about elevating in general:
 

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The type of leg lift you're discussing is definitely for measuring glute strength. Are they asking you to do it to build strength, or was it just part of testing your strength? I've done it loads of times to test my strength during initial and final PT visits (mostly for my back/hips), but not commonly for my knees....

With that said, it IS great for building glute strength...but ti depends what the goal/purpose is. I've had to do it for years on my left side, even if I didn't just have knee surgery (though that makes things worse and guarantees starting all over again due to recovery and weeks of not doing my usual routine) . :) I have an issue with maintaining hip/sacrum alignment due to a car accident in college. The ligaments were horribly stretched, and the hip was out of alignment for months (I was a pour college kid with no medical insurance in the US).

Unfortunately, after every knee surgery, my "back" PT twists me like a pretzel to realign things, and that exercise becomes a daily chore, adding weight over time. It works wonderfully, but again, if they're asking you to do it after knee surgery, there are many other ways to accomplish the same goal. Keep in mind my Back PT makes sure one always does it correctly, as many people do more harm to their back if this is exercise isn't done properly. Too much lift/twisting often causes L4-L5 vertebrae problems/pain. I've been there and done that after having my son, as I wasn't taught the correct way before I found this specific physical therapist.

So yeah---it's common as a test, but not so common as an exercise to do unless you've lost A LOT of strength over time or have a preexisiting back problem.
 
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Celle

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@DOCCUKE - I don't think that the exercise to lift your leg backwards is part of standard post-op PT after a knee replacement. Honestly, at 3 months post-op, you probably don't need PT at all and I think that some of your pain is caused by the PT you're doing.

Do you have to be discharged by your PT? Is that a requirement of your insurance? If not, why not discharge yourself? By now, your everyday life should be sufficient exercise for your knee.
 
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DOCCUKE

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Hi Celle
I am figuring this out as I go. The PT tech believed that strengthening my glutes would somehow help with my knee. Not sure I buy that train of thought, but I do feel I should strengthen my glutes as if they are what controls that reverse leg lift I am definitely not strong in that regard.
That said I have back issues that have been, knock on wood, behaving themselves lately

I deadlifted a 1973 grand Torino 40 years ago on a bet, yes I know not so bright!! Strength, youth & testosterone are a very bad combination!!

Grabbed the rear bumper & lifted the back of the car far enough to get a phone book under each wheel!! I was very proud of myself, for about 2 seconds !!

Then I felt & heard a rip that went from my lower back to my right butt cheek!!

Literally left on my hands & knees

Years later diagnosed with bulging discs between l3 & l4

Suffice to say at almost 62 I don't endeavor to set any records picking things up!!

Anyway, with my knees being so bad do long I was probably walking messed up and managed to allow my glutes to get as weak as they are.

As for my knee, literally everything hurts my knee. Getting out of a chair, getting up from bed, up or down even a couple of stairs is still excruciating!! Still worse in my " new knee" then my other knee that has no cartilage & is bowlegged

So at this point I will carefully work at strengthening my glutes, get deep tissue massage from PT & hopefully start to improve soon!! 3 months of this is way beyond getting old!!
 
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DOCCUKE

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Hi Rockgirl4
The PT they want me to do is
Stand, hold onto table or wall for balance.
Extend leg back & at a diagnal, keep back straight.
Return to start position
Squeeze your bottom muscles while leg is extended.
2 sets of 10 twice a day
Rest one minute between sets

That is what they say will strengthen my glutes. Not hard as much as awkward. Does manage to irritate my TkR knee, but at this point everything irritates that
 

Jockette

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I haven’t heard the name grand Torino in years!!! I had to google it for old time’s sake! Then I googled the 1973 Challenger my husband had when I met him in 1975. Fond memories!

Did you have that injury looked at, at the time? How long did it take to recover?
 
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DOCCUKE

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Hi Jockette
Yes it was diagnosed as a bad sprain. Education for me as a sprain did not sound so painful to me until I actually had a sprained back

It took a couple weeks before I went to the doctor as I literally could not move. Spent 2 weeks trying to use a bedpan which was dam near impossible. I literally could not stand up. In hindsight an ambulance would have been a great plan! I was concerned about the cost as I had no health insurance at the time.

Since then, & that was in 1978, every few years I pick up something the wrong way. And my back is out! I don't think it has ever been as bad as it was in 1978, but it has been bad enough.

Most recent incident with my back was 6 years ago. I do not remember the exact date but I know I had just finished shoveling snow & was sore & stiff. I came in & my wife told me the water dispenser on the fridge was not working. I bent over to look at it & like a lightning bolt of pain, put me right to my knees!! I guess it was the straw the broke DOC'S back!

That put me down for about 2 months!!

At that time I was unemployed & without health insurance!! That was when I was diagnosed with bulging discs

It's like Indiana Jones said, " It ain't the age, it's the mileage!!"
 
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DOCCUKE

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Love the old cars too!!
Had a 1968 Charger, 1969 Charger, 1969 Coronet 440, 1969 Coronet 500, 1968 Dodge dart GT, 1974 Challenger, 1974 Dodge Dart Sport, plus a few Cordobas

Loved those old Mopars
 

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