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[BILATERAL TKR] Recovery

Thatbpguy

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It seems as if you're doing everything right. The swelling is normal and just keep elevating and icing. I was unable to put a toe on the floor for over 8 days.
 

kneeper

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Yes, the swelling is typical. It sounds like you're doing all the right things. Hang in there, it will get better--just not right away. :console2:
 

Jaycey

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@Minnie77 you will notice that I have merged your two threads together as we prefer that members in recovery only have one thread.

This is for three reasons:
1. if you keep starting new threads, you miss the posts others have left you in the old threads
2. it often ends up that information is unnecessarily repeated
3. it's best if we can keep all your recovery story in one place so it's easily accessed if we need to advise you.

Please keep all your questions and updates on this thread. If you would like a new thread title just give a shout.
 

Jockette

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I think you should check in with your surgeon and get his opinion on your current state.

PT has come 3 times but have done nothing because my blood pressure is too high and I'm dizzy
You have a wise PT. While I was still in the hospital my PT cut my walk short as he was concerned about my low blood pressure.

All I've done is little walks, ankle pumps and butt squeezes. Not top mention being hooked to my ice machine with leg elevated the rest of the time
These are all the right things to do in such early days of recovery. There will be plenty of time later, when you are more healed, to increase your efforts.

Don’t look at little activity as slacking off, look at it as giving your knee the best circumstance in which to heal.

Hang in there, better days are ahead. :console2:
 

luvcats

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I'm sorry to say it probably is normal. 10 days to 2 weeks is when the swelling is at it's worst and it may stay bad for a week or so. You're in one of the hardest phases of recovery. Keep doing your little walks with your assistive device of choice. I recommend Netflix, YouTube, or music to help you get through this phase. There isn't anything else you can do, it just has to pass. And Ice.
 

LindaO

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Welcome to the other side! I know you must be in a lot of pain with the swelling. I hope your blood pressure gets better. Let us know what your doctor suggests!
 
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Minnie77

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Had an ok day today. I went down and up 2 steps so I could watch my grandson play outside. And I needed fresh air. On the down side I've been nauseous for days. Can barely eat at all. I did end up throwing up yesterday from the nausea. I get really hot, dizzy and a headache. Not sure if its cause I'm not eating but taking oxycodone. Plus all the fluid going straight to my knees. I see my doctor Tuesday so I'll take it all up with him. Another plus is I get all my staples out on Tuesday!!!! Hoping everyone is having a great healing weekend
 

Jockette

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I’m so sorry you’re having such a hard time. :console2:

Maybe try getting in touch with your doctor’s office before Tuesday and tell them how you’re feeling

@sistersinhim drank protein shakes and she did well with that until she could eat better.

Your knee will feel better with those staples out.
 

kneeper

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Do you have a snack with the oxy? I found I had to eat a couple of crackers or something with my pain meds to avoid stomach issues.

I also agree with Jockette that you should let your doctor know about your nausea if it doesn't improve tomorrow. There are things they can do to help.
 
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Minnie77

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Went to doctor today for 2 week follow up. Even though 2 weeks is tomorrow. Had the staples removed. One leg hurt really bad and the other knee wasn't too bad as far as staples coming out. Physician assistant not happy with my rom at all. Mind you I've been doing this without pain meds because of the terrible nausea. I've lost 15lbs in 2 weeks because of not being able to eat. Well I got zofran finally and that is helping. She told me no more in home pt they are too nice! You need to go to out patient where they push you or your going to have to be surgical manipulated. And she said when the doctor sees you in 2 weeks he's not going to be happy at all. And he's very up front and will call you a wussy. So that's refreshing. At least the nurse said my scars are some of the best she's ever seen. Time to load up on pain meds and have my knees get the mess beat out of them. And hoping this new pain med helps me sleep. It's called nucynta. I've never heard of it but she said it doesn't mess with stomachs as bad.
 

Jockette

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She told me no more in home pt they are too nice! You need to go to out patient where they push you or your going to have to be surgical manipulated. And she said when the doctor sees you in 2 weeks he's not going to be happy at all. And he's very up front and will call you a wussy.
This is no way to talk to a patient after only 2 very difficult weeks of recovery. Her advice is inappropriate.

Time to load up on pain meds and have my knees get the mess beat out of them
No, not only do you not have to do this, you should not allow any PT do do this.
Saying no to therapy - am I allowed to?

You will recover fine without any aggressive treatment. Aggressive treatment will maintain, if not increase your pain and swelling, which will prevent the ROM everyone wants. Don’t fall for it. Just do gentle movements, short walks every hour or so that you are awake, rest ice and elevate to help the swelling go down. That’s what is preventing your bend.

Keep any exercises you do very gentle. You can add to it later as you heal and feel better.

Don’t allow anyone to force bend your knee. Don’t let anyone hurt you. It’s not necessary. :console2:
 
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Minnie77

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@Jockette thank you so much. I will not give in to it. I have so many people even nurses and pt people on Facebook saying you just have to push through the pain. Half the people have me scared to death that my legs will never work if I do hurt myself. I feel like it's all the swelling now that is causing it not to bend much. I will not let anyone hurt me or I'll leave. I am however keeping the in home pt for the rest of this week to see how she is.
 

Jockette

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Stay away from the knee stuff on Facebook.
 

Celle

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She told me no more in home pt they are too nice! You need to go to out patient where they push you or your going to have to be surgical manipulated. And she said when the doctor sees you in 2 weeks he's not going to be happy at all. And he's very up front and will call you a wussy. So that's refreshing. At least the nurse said my scars are some of the best she's ever seen. Time to load up on pain meds and have my knees get the mess beat out of them.
Your surgeon's PA is wrong. She's misinformed. You don't have to push through the pain and you don't have to have a surgical manipulation unless you want it. What she told you is all scare tactics and if you follow her advice, you could harm your knee.

There's no need to rush to get ROM (Range of Motion) because it can continue to improve for a year, or even much longer, after a knee replacement. There isn't any deadline you have to meet:
Myth busting: the "window of opportunity" in TKR

It's not exercising that gets you your ROM - it's time. Time to recover, time for swelling and pain to settle, and time to heal. Your knee is capable of achieving good ROM right from the start. Its ROM will gradually increase, naturally, as your knee heals and the internal and external swelling decrease.
Myth busting: no pain, no gain
 

Roy Gardiner

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I agree with Jockette and Celle.
Physician assistant not happy with my rom at all.
You don't have to be happy with his not being happy
I've lost 15lbs in 2 weeks because of not being able to eat
Not all fat, unfortunately, so don't be disappointed if it comes back fairly quickly
"You need to go to out patient where they push you or your going to have to be surgical manipulated."
And your reply is "[insert words banned by BoneSmart] off"
And he's very up front and will call you a wussy
And you can reply with more banned words.
Time to load up on pain meds and have my knees get the mess beat out of them
Seriously, don't take painkillers before any kind of activity, especially PT, so suppress the pain it causes. You need the pain to tell you when to stop!
 

kneeper

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@Jockette thank you so much. I will not give in to it. I have so many people even nurses and pt people on Facebook saying you just have to push through the pain. Half the people have me scared to death that my legs will never work if I do hurt myself. I feel like it's all the swelling now that is causing it not to bend much. I will not let anyone hurt me or I'll leave. I am however keeping the in home pt for the rest of this week to see how she is.
At 2 weeks I was in the 60s for bend. People looked at me like I was "behind." But my knee was massively swollen. It's just not going to bend much under those circumstances. You need to get the swelling down and getting beaten up in PT is not the solution. Moving, but gently is ok.' By 6 weeks I hit 90 and continued to gain a bit over the next weeks.

Finding exactly where the line between moving and resting is will change all through your recovery.
For me it was uncomfortable to "test my limits"--which is ok to do--but I always stopped if it was too painful. Pain is in the eye of the beholder so it's hard to describe, but I always felt like some "pain" was ok, but "PAIN" was not. ;)
 

luvcats

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For my first knee, I did all the exercises daily just as I was supposed to. It hurt a lot. After spending two months here on the forums, for the second knee, I did PT when the person came, but carefully and not at all otherwise until the third week when I started outpatient PT. Even then, I only did a few of the exercises at home, and they had more to do with re-learning how to walk than with range of motion.

Today I'm at 7 weeks out from the second replacement, and honestly, the second knee is more flexible than the first. I think that has to do with how flexible it was before the surgery and now I believe that the PT I did in the first few weeks didn't make any difference at all. Your body can only do so much when it's swollen. Don't let the PTs bully you. 2 weeks is nothing.
 

sistersinhim

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Many of us never took formal PT or did exercises. I am one of them. I had 11 knee surgeries, 2 of them kneecap removals and 1 tkr. Even after those I never took formal PT. But, I didn't just sit around and do nothing. I used my knee as it was intended to be used by walking around to take care of my daily needs. As I healed I was able to do more. Icing and elevation was a huge part of my recovery.

Listen to your knee. It will tell you if you're doing too much by increased pain and swelling. When that happens, I found that resting, icing and elevating helped. A swollen knee can't bend as well as a knee that's not swollen. Don't let PT bully and buffalo you into painful exercises. You'll just have more pain and swelling and lower bend. We know, we've been where you are. The only person you have to listen to is your own knee. The heck with everyone else!
 
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Minnie77

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I'll be 3 weeks on Wednesday. I decided to stop some meds. Still taking my blood pressure meds (was put on early in recovery) and my blood thinner. I can't wait to be off everything. Right now and the last couple days I literally feel like someone poured cement in my knees. I can bend then maybe 60. I know we shouldn't focus on ROM but the cement feeling is driving me nuts. I actually slept the last 2 nights so that was cool. Also just going out the front door I feel like I ran a marathon. Does the exhaustion let up (I think it could be one of my pills too). I really want to get out of the house and closer to driving and working but with the cement knees and exhaustion I see no end in sight
 

Jockette

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Here is why you are exhausted:
 

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