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TKR Rodney's TKR recovery

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AussieRodney

AussieRodney

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I had a minor win yesterday. My wife and I had an unexpected in person visit with the surgeon. After he had finished berating me for over-doing the walking, not doing my PT and generally not taking the whole process seriously enough, he gave me some TED Hose. It certainly helps both legs to feel a bit more "supported", but the bonus is that I can apply the cold pack directly onto the hose, which provides just enough separation while allowing the cold to get to where I need it. Yay! Now I can target specific locations, such as the the knee and nothing else, or when my Restless Legs decide to ache, right where the ache is. The knee is still badly swollen but at least I feel that I have some control.
 
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sistersinhim

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Walking is PT, and you've been doing plenty of that. After all, our knees were created to walk, not do a bunch of exercises! I think you're doing fine.
 
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AussieRodney

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I think you're doing fine.
Even with the sudden swelling, which wasn't there 2 weeks ago?

Ah! Walking on the knee has impacted the hip and lower back area, which in turn makes it difficult for the legs to perform correctly. Walking is mildly painful in the swollen area, so I'm going with the BoneSmart mantra.
 

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Walking is very good for a new, healing knee, but not to excess. Your knee is telling you that you have recently walked to excess.

Your surgeon did major carpentry work and disturbed every millimeter of soft tissue in this area, and your tissue is healing, and full healing takes a full year or more.

Doing too much, too soon, causes set backs.

Listen to what your knee is telling you, the knee is in charge. If the knee is’t happy, neither will you be.
 

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Walking on the knee has impacted the hip and lower back area, which in turn makes it difficult for the legs to perform correctly. Walking is mildly painful in the swollen area, so I'm going with the BoneSmart mantra.
Your body mechanics have all been altered by the surgery, and your other joints have to get used to that, hence their pain. This pain should gradually ease off as you recover.

I agree with the others - walking is exercise. It's the best exercise of all for a new knee, but don't overdo it.
 

sistersinhim

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Even with the sudden swelling, which wasn't there 2 weeks ago?
Your swelling is more because you increased your walking. What is good is that you know your knee will do that extra walking and eventually it won't swell as much. Your doctor told you that you are doing too much and that's why you are swelling.
 
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AussieRodney

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Restless Legs Syndrome

I'm curious as to whether anyone has had to deal with RLS on top of managing a recovery.

A lot of my issues recently, particularly since I withdrew from the narcotics, have been classic RLS - part or all of one or both legs aching at up to an 8. In my "normal" environment, I have them mostly under control with prescription meds before they flare up, but the added stress of the recovery has added a new dimension to my evenings. I do ice the affected piece of leg when it happens, but the effect is only temporary. The only solution, if I could call it that, is to double up on the naturals that I take to get to sleep and wait for them to knock me out.

Unrelated but equally frustrating is that the whole unbalance from the knee is causing major grief in my lower back and left hip. Walking with my frame is mostly OK, but even just short distances without it inside the apartment can see me stopped with a few steps. My next strategy is to revisit my Chiropractor and/or get a decent massage.
 
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Jockette

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We’ve had quite a few members with restless legs. Would you like to change your thread title to reflect this issue? If so, let us know and we’ll change it for you.

My next strategy is to revisit my Chiropractor and/or get a decent massage.
I saw my chiropractor twice a week the second month of my recovery.
 
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AussieRodney

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I have refined my icing process. Near the couch is a small towel and a cotton pillowcase. I walk my frame to the fridge and pull a cold pack out of the freezer and bring it back to the couch. The towel is for wiping off excess ice and other debris. Next, I spread the pillowcase over the area to be iced, then drop the cold pack on top and tuck it around the sides if needed. If it's the back of a leg being iced, it's towel first, then cold pack, then pillowcase, then leg on top. When finished, use the towel to dry any condensation off the cold pack and transport it back to the fridge.
 
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AussieRodney

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I posted this elsewhere, but I feel it's appropriate to repeat it here.

I have had Restless Legs for decades. The only way I can get to sleep is to swallow a HEAP of pills. I use Irwin Naturals "Power to Sleep" as well as their "CBD + Power to Sleep". For the last several weeks, I have doubled the quantities, and they hit me like an oncoming train within about 15 minutes. Id I don't do that, I don't sleep.

Meanwhile, I have some "interesting" times icing and/or elevating my knee, because the whole leg decides it want to ache and I have to fold it up into my thigh just to get a little bit of relief. Just as well I have a 120+ range of motion.

Then I have my left calf deciding to ache at about 5-6. That ends up with a a large IcyHot Lidocaine patch on it.

And then I have my lower back and left hip killing me whenever I stand in one place for more than about a minute. It seems that this recovery has thrown everything out. The chiropractor banged me around as usual and said, "See you in 2 weeks". The hip area also gets a large IcyHot Lidocaine patch on it.
 
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AussieRodney

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My right knee is doing fine. Swelling is reducing.

My left hip is the area giving me grief now. Every time I stand up, it hurts, talking about 7 to 8. Not so bad when I sit. Walking is about 5 to 6. Walking using the frame is 1 to 2.

Chiropractor adjusted me and said, "See you in 2 weeks". Ugh!

Suggestions welcome.
 

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You are still very early in a recovery that takes a full year or more. There isn’t always a fix for things that hurt, other than Time. It takes a long while for the body to heal and adjust. Hang in there. :bored:
 

Celle

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I have had Restless Legs for decades. The only way I can get to sleep is to swallow a HEAP of pills. I use Irwin Naturals "Power to Sleep" as well as their "CBD + Power to Sleep". For the last several weeks, I have doubled the quantities, and they hit me like an oncoming train within about 15 minutes. Id I don't do that, I don't sleep.
@AussieRodney - Have you discussed your RLS with your own doctor? What has he/she suggested, and is he/she aware what drugs you're taking, to try and control your RLS? If you're using CBD products, your doctor does need to know that, as it's possible for this or any herbal over-the-counter products to interfere with other medications you take.
 
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AussieRodney

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@Celle - Yes. He prescribed Gabapentin a long time ago. And as for the the herbals and the CBD, he knows. His comment was, "Marijuana products are legal in Washington State."

Application of a Lidocaine patch on the errant leg helps, held in place by a knee brace, and if either leg is aching, it gets iced.
 
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AussieRodney

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Woohoo. With the purchase today of 2 carabiners, I can now equip my frame with a large gym bag for carrying stuff, in addition to the small one at the front, which I have been using since the day I acquired the frame, for carrying meds, wallet, disability placard, keys and phone.

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On a more mundane note, my knee is progressing towards normal. I'm doing quite a bit of walking (not too much), although my left hip is still bothering me. When I wake up and move it, the pain is a 7. When I spin and lift to get out of bed, it triggers at a 9. Either I wall crawl to my frame to get to the bathroom or I make use of the urinal on the bedside cabinet and then wall crawl to the frame to get moving for the day.

I have started liberally applying Rub on Relief by Livingwell Nutraceuticals on the hip and the adjacent lower back as often as I remember, which brings it down several points.
 

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