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Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Recovery Area' started by lisabl, May 5, 2019.
My blood pressure was low the first 24 hours, also.
End of day 2 and promoted to crutches with walking corridor and stairs very slowly. Leg swelling as not elevated in hospital, although cryocuff in use. 85° flex and +5° ext and happy considering the swelling. Absolutely shattered all day though, but understand that might be the heavy dose oxycodene.
Your body has been through a traumatic experience.
Was let out of hospital lunchtime day 3 following good reports from hydro PT. Loved the pool and the freedom it gave my knee doing gentle exercise in the water. At home hubby started looking after me, and I slept on couch with lounge doctor for a couple of hrs, using cryo cuff the whole time. So at bedtime thought...hey I have slept the last 3 nights in a hospital bed so should be ok in spare bed with extra pillows...wrong. Did not factor in meds slightly different at home without knockout drops (oxycodone) being changed to codeine. So up every hr going to toilet, juggling crutches and back in bed using leg lifter (no easy button to press to change height of bed). By morning more shattered, although knee not really hurting just thigh ache and muscle weakness.
Day 4 resting, icing and elevating and not much more, with sleeping on recliner much better, more comfortable and waking up every 2-3hrs for toilet or meds.
Day 5 (today), woke at 6.30am to take meds and knee surprisingly pain free, just a little stiff. Normal rest,Cryocuff, elevating etc, and decided to try out walking sticks instead of crutches. Coped quite well and had first shower out of hospital- lovely....clean hair... even better. Then oh dear laxative meds given in hospital kicked in...say no more.
On feet a bit more today helping prep lunch, cup of tea etc. Whilst elevating tonight I got really bad thigh spasms down upper leg together with zingers on the knee, so took cryocuff off and put heat pad on thigh which seemed to help with spasms.
Back on recliner tonight, with knee pain hypnosis audio book to help me get off to sleep. Lets hope tomorrow is as good as today.
You have a great attitude, I’m glad you’re doing well.
Thank you @Jockette After the problems 1st time round I am determined to give my baby knee all the tlc it needs to recover as quickly as it is able. Following the BoneSmart way, taking things very slowly with excercise. My next Hydro PT session is next Thursday (day 10) so no pressure there for an intensive exercise regimen to push ROM. It will be interesting to see my numbets tho as I think I am close to 90 and 0 at the moment.
I’m really surprised they have you in the pool already. Did I understand you had that in the hospital?
I had pool therapy at 4 weeks and it was awful. 50 minutes and way too many bending exercises. It took me 3 days of increased pain to recover.
I’m glad you’re taking things slower this time. I will, too, if/when I have my current partial revised. It’s probably inevitable, but so far no one has offered it. I’m managing, for now.
@Jockette my operation was done in a uk private hospital (not nhs) as my hubby has excellent private heath insurance cover with his work and he pays for the family premium. Healthcare is so different in the uk with the split nhs/private system. Better nursing ratios all round, and really good facilities.
The private hospital I stayed in had a hydro pool which all inpatients could access 1 PT session before discharge, and I have 2 more weekly sessions booked before landside PT starts. They have a policy of 3 patients in the pool at any time with 1 PT. We were a mixture of hips and knees at different stages and all exercises were slow and gentle to aid joint mobility. I did 4 exercises in the half hr session. Calf stretches on tip toes and down, Knee Raises, Quad/Glute stretch with a gentle squat, slow cycle - about 5/10 reps each. No pressure to raise higher or sit lower or rotate faster, all at my own pace.
WEEK 1 complete. In last couple of days not much pain as such but aching muscles and 'toothachy' style constant low level "Hi I'm still here" ache on the knee joint. Moderate swelling on over large legs means my extension ok and can walk with single stick no problem, but struggling to bend much as really tight skin to the right of the dressing doesn't want to stretch much. Resting and icing, but again compression with cryo cuff really uncomfortable where the staples are and the feel like they are pulling.
Day 7- I went for a 15min car journey (hubby driving) to local grocery store, walked around to get nice meals for next few days for about 10 mins,, then home in car. After lunch and meds I fell asleep for 2hrs with leg elevated and iced. Good Day. Sunshine and warm spring weather helped.
Day 8 (today) on my own for first significant time as hubby at work (not working from home) and it's peaceful and restful. Putting washing in tumble dryer will be the limit of my housework today.
WEEK 2 challenges include next Hydrophysio session, and stitches out. Maybe a visit to a church cafe to meet up with some friends (a friend said she was happy to play tax)i. Also thought I might start reducing codeine by 1 x 30mg tab at lunch, and 1 x 200mg Ibuprofen at breakfast.
WEEK 2 complete.
Thigh muscle (near IT Band) improving with use of a heat pad whilst I elevate and ice my knee. Sleeping of night in 2 hour sessions waking up in discomfort rather than pain. By the time I have uncooked from cryo cuff and walked to toilet and back, able to get back to sleep with my meditation/hypnotherapy talking book for another 2hrs ... and repeat. Last night I went back into my bed for the first time since day 1, as recliner starting to get uncomfortable. Sleeping about 6hrs a night in total then a couple of hour naps during the day.
Knee aches a bit when not icing, and the zingers have started when leg not elevated, but if I do light massage on knee they seem to stop for a bit. By about day 11 I found I could lift my leg on my own without a leg lifter making it easier to get on/off sofa, bed and in/out of car. I have also stopped using my cane indoors, but use it while out to show others I am injured. At hydrotherapy extension 0, flexion 95.
Today (day 14) I had two achievements, one a solo shower without hubby hovering, and going up 3 steps foot over foot instead of one at a time without pain. Earlier in week sat in office chair for about 1.5hrs at computer and booked a cruise holiday for September (something to look forward to)- no swelling on knee, just a bit stiff. I am finding that most of stiffness and lack of stretch seems to come from area of incision and staples.
I have also dropped ibuprofen down to 400mg a day with my evening meal which helps with my Rheumatoid Arthritis, and codeine 45mg twice a day, and paracetamol 1000mg x 4 times a day (day 4, I was in 60mg codeine 3 times a day, 400mg Ibuprofen 3 times a day, and 1000mg of paracetamol x 4 times a day).
Staples out tomorrow, so I would say in general I had a good week.
Day 15 and 35 staples out (only 3 hurt), drain site dressing removed and steri strips with new waterproof dressing reapplied. Both can be removed in another 2 weeks according to nurse.
Shattered now so nap time.
That's great news, another milestone in the books. I had my incision closed with surgical glue I was nervous when they removed this huge bandage I close my eyes and grip the chair handles anticipating it was going to be painful. To my surprise, the bandage came off like a breeze.
Keep up the great work.
@TimeBuster , dressing came away easily and I was happy to see the wound with staples and counted them! But when it came to the nurse removing the staples I just had to look away, but the wound is neat and thin and looks good as far a I can see.
I am a little disappointed the new dressing is on for another 2 weeks, for as far asI can tell its the dressing that is making the skin feel tight when I bend my knee at the moment.
Knee is as swollen now as when I first came out of hospital. I napped for 2hrs when I got home!
My surgeon took my bandage off about a week and a half after surgery and did not recover it, my stitches came out at the 2 week check up.
I was so sure my knee would bend better without the stitches, but it didn’t. It didn’t bend well because of the swelling.
I was very disappointed to get steri strips, they were worse than the stitches, they curled on the edges looking sloppy and I had a shower restriction for 3 days which I hadn’t had with the original bandage.
My stitches were very neatly done, my friend said my surgeon should take up quilting!
@Jockette , when I had my PKR last year and they removed staples they put steri stips on (just so you feel a bit more secure) but no other dressing so air would circulate. Because I have one more hydrotherapy session on Friday, I think that is why she has put another waterproof dressing on. It does also mean I can still have a nice warm shower without restrictions. Knee having been continuously iced over last 3 hrs (cryocuff), swelling coming down nicely and can get 90 on flexion again.
That's too much activity for week 2. For the first month, you should be doing not much more than resting, icing and elevating.
Activity progression for TKRs
@Celle, I am really not doing too much. The hydrotherapy is really gentle stretching in water, no pushing or pulling or working against the water pressure of the pool. I have had no PT apart from this one session a week, and at home I do the very occassional heel slide and test flexion sitting in chair and seeing how far it will go (maybe once every couple of days). Week 1 - yes probably I should not have gone with hubby to local grocery store, but since then I have eased off. Day 10 I did a 5 min car journey to church cafe, where I could elevate and ice my leg whilst socialising and 5 min car journey home - it made me feel so much more positive and not quite so under house arrest, plus second hydrotherapy session. I do not seem to have had any set back with this activity. as for the rest of the time (around 22hrs a day, I am resting/icing and elevating my leg). I am lucky my hubby can also work from home 3 days a week and makes sure I am not doing too much.
It is wonderful that you can get out just for a few minutes without the knee yelling at you. It sounds like you are listening to it really well. That's the key to a less painful recovery.
@sistersinhim Either I have a high pain tolerance (ha ha definitely not if the epidural was anything to go by!!!), have been ahead of the pain med game, or just having a good recovery, I am having low pain on knee excluding zingers, and just quad/calf muscle ache. I am also happy walking heal-toe with quite a good leg extension (although slow). I decided that later this week I might go for a little walk to the end of our road and back (200mts/yds) and see how I go as the bus stop is at end of road, which would mean I could bus to church cafe by week 4 on my own. No going back to work until late September as I am a teacher in UK and our new year starts 1st week Sept, but I have booked a cruise vacation for 2nd week Sept (adult only ship....no kids yay). So able to take recovery slow and steady, and hopefully be less frustrated as I have already done this journey once already this year.
Hi - newish here and awaiting revision to TKR in 2 weeks. Glad to read that your recovery seems to be going well. Do you mind me asking if you were in a Spire Hospital?