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TKR Rubyroo 12-2-19 RTKR Recovery Journey

Rubyroo

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Rubyroo 12-2-19 RTKR Recovery Journey:
Glad to have found the Bonesmart forum to go through the TKR journey with others who “get it”. Found the website before surgery but I hadn’t really checked it out thoroughly. Just joined the forum. 5 weeks out and doing pretty well. This journey has been the most challenging thing I have ever faced. Walking mostly unassisted. ROM is at 125. Cried more in the past 5 weeks then I’ve ever cried. (Except for when my Mom passed). Lots of emotions and with each person’s post I read I can see a part of myself in them. Glad to have found a support community.
 

sistersinhim

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@Rubyroo, I have started your very own thread for you. Please post any updates and questions on this thread. It will be like a journal for you and for us to look back on.

I am glad you found us. You will find lots of help here, and you can also give lots of help here to others going through their replacement journey.

The following are our basic guidelines and should help get you started. As you read more on other members recovery threads, you’ll get a better perspective of what to expect and what not to do, especially regarding PT.

Knee Recovery: The Guidelines

1. Don’t worry: Your body will heal all by itself. Relax, let it, don't try and hurry it, don’t worry about any symptoms now; they are almost certainly temporary
2. Control discomfort:
rest
ice
take your pain meds by prescription schedule (not when pain starts!)​
3. Do what you want to do BUT
a. If it hurts, don't do it and don't allow anyone - especially a physical therapist - to do it to you
b. If your leg swells more or gets stiffer in the 24 hours after doing it, don't do it again.
4. PT or exercise can be useful BUT take note of these
5. Here is a week-by-week guide for Activity progression for TKRs


The Recovery articles:
The importance of managing pain after a TKR and the pain chart
Swollen and stiff knee: what causes it?
Energy drain for TKRs
Elevation is the key
Ice to control pain and swelling
Heel slides and how to do them properly
Chart representation of TKR recovery
Healing: how long does it take?

Post op blues is a reality - be prepared for it
Sleep deprivation is pretty much inevitable - but what causes it?

There are also some cautionary articles here
Myth busting: no pain, no gain
Myth busting: the "window of opportunity" in TKR
Myth busting: on getting addicted to pain meds

We try to keep the forum a positive and safe place for our members to talk about their questions or concerns and to report successes with their joint replacement surgery.

While members may create as many threads as they like in a majority of BoneSmart's forums, we ask that each member have only one recovery thread. This policy makes it easier to go back and review history before providing advice.
 

Helizabug

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I hope the crying hasn’t been induced by PT!

I’m a week ahead of you, and things have seemed pretty good for me, except I’m not happy with my ROM, which is something I’m addressing as best I can with patience and more gentle work.

It sounds like you’re doing well, and that’s always good to hear. Don’t hesitate to ask for help when you’re struggling. I had a hard time posting when I was struggling after things sounded so good for a while. But the truth is that BoneSmart is here when things are going whatever way they go.

I hope they only go well for you.
 

jaybird

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Hi, Rubyroo. I’m just a couple of days behind you. This recovery is a challenge, isn’t it? I’m actually thinking that I could go back to work at this point, but I’ve got three months, and I’m going to use them. I’m working 16 hrs/wk in Feb, but can still get disability to make up the difference from full time, so I’ll sort of ease into things.
 
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Rubyroo

Rubyroo

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Good to hear from you both Helizabug & Jaybird! Went to church today for first time since before surgery. Hubby was able to park close by and I walked in and was able to find a seat and grab another seat to put my leg up on. It was good to see folks but I was ready to be home by the time it was over. Went home and took a big nap. So I have to share this strange thing. About a week ago I shaved my leg and obviously avoided the incision. Shaved like usual- with gel foam, same razor blah, blah blah. Well several days ago I broke out in a horrific rash on my surgery leg from where I had shaved. It is positively related to shaving my legs- not an infection of any kind from the surgery. It was like small pimple like rash that was very irritated and itchy. As if the poor leg has gone through enough stuff. Had to take Benadryl a couple days because it was itchy and irritated. Benadryl helped but it wipes me out for a few days afterward. Put hydrogen peroxide on rash and that helped dry it out some and then I got some hydrocortisone cream with aloe and used that on it. It is drying out and much better and the pimples are getting better. Anyhow- the leg did not appreciate being shaved! I'll be having Sasquatch length leg hair before I shave it again you can believe that. Holy mackerel! Not a good time.
 

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Yikes! I am very blonde and don’t shave my legs, but that sounds unpleasant.
 

Helizabug

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Our weather was in the 60s and 70s yesterday, so I wore shorts to work. I was trying to decide whether to shave or just do a neon pink dye job on my leg hair and let it fly! :heehee:

I shaved.
 

sistersinhim

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I think using an electric or battery shaver would probably be better than a razor blade at this time in your recovery. It's good that the rash is going away.
 

sondrals

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I showed my boss my leg today Sasquatch hair and all. I haven’t shaved since a week prior to surgery and really don’t feel like doing it now :heehee:
 

sarahd62

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Hi Rubyroo, nice to meet you. I am 7 weeks out ( NOV 19) from a revision TKR following a partial in OCT 2018 that failed. Shaved my legs this morning after seeing the Dr and feeling embarrassed! Hope the rash is better!!!
 
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Rubyroo

Rubyroo

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Hi All! Great to hear from you guys! Rash is slowly going away. Leg was kind of swollen yesterday and uncomfortable. At PT yesterday my ROM was 121 and the time before it had been 125. I understand the ROM will fluctuate- so it's ok. I have been reading some of the other folks posts and I am amazed how some folks after a short time can walk sooooooooo far. I try to do my PT exercises each day and am happy to get those accomplished when possible. Walked around the back yard a few times this afternoon and although my knee didn't hurt it felt a bit uncomfortable. So did what I felt comfortable with and did some icing today.
 

Helizabug

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Let the comfort of your knee guide you. If you can be patient, you won’t need to push to and through pain. Your flexion sounds great. I’m one of the ones who can walk a good distance, but my ROM is not so great, I think. We’ll all get there though.
 

kneeper

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Slow and steady wins the race.
 
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Rubyroo

Rubyroo

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7 weeks out today. Off and on I have had some anxiety prior to going to each PT session often feeling anxious and a bit emotional. Everything usually goes ok after it is all said and done but I hate the feeling of anxiety.

I am still not driving because I don't feel quite ready yet and Hubby is taking me where I need to go. The other day we were getting ready to leave the house and get in the car and for some reason before we even left the driveway I felt really emotional and started to cry a bit. We got in the car and had to go to CVS to pick up some prescriptions at the drive thru. We then went to BiLo and had to pick up some prescriptions there as well. Hubby was going to drop me off at curb and I planned to go in alone and get the prescription and then come back out. I got both feet out of the car and my purse and felt very overwhelmed and put both feet back in the car and my purse and began crying and said I did not want to go in there alone. Hubby parked car and then ran in and got prescription while I sat in the car and cried. We then drove to Target & he dropped me off at the curb and I stayed right there until he parked and then walked up with a buggy and we went inside and picked up a few things and I used the buggy to hang on to. I was fine without it because I ended up walking around a bit without it- but it just made me feel safe to have it to hang on to if I needed. I have been walking around without a cane or a walker for a little while. I think I have this fear of going somewhere and my knee beginning to hurt and not having anywhere to sit down. Anyway- I was just wondering has anyone else had any issues with anxiety during this journey?

Went to PT today- ROM was 123 degrees. Past couple of days things have been going pretty good. I am hoping as each days passes and I get stronger and more confident I will lose this anxiety issue.
 

Jockette

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Many of us have anxiety issues for a while after this surgery. I did, too. I cry easily anyway, but it was way worse for quite a while for me after surgery.

My personal opinion is, even though the anesthesia prevents us from feeling and remembering the actual surgery, I think somewhere in our brain, it is remembered, and manifests itself with fear and anxiety. It does pass after a while.:console2:

Here’s an article about being fearful and emotional after surgery, from our Recovery Guidelines:
 
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Helizabug

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Even with all the surgeries I have had, I am still fighting that anxiety.

Something that helps me is to visualize the trip going well, even visualizing finding somewhere to sit for a moment and feeling good about that resourcefulness. There’s a part of us that tells us what to worry about, loud and clear; but the part of us that tells us about our strength and resilience is much quieter and has a hard time being heard. We need to listen to it too.

It’s also good to listen to your anxiety and see when it’s helping you plan for a situation. We do need to include rest in our outings sometimes.
 
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Rubyroo

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We met a friend out today to have lunch. No anxiety! It was nice! Baby steps! Great to see my friend today- I had not seen her since before my surgery and she understands- she had both knees done at once. Nice to get out in the world a bit.
 
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Rubyroo

Rubyroo

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Hello troops,
Things are coming along slowly but surely. 9 weeks out today. Still going to PT twice a week & doing my exercises at home. Feeling a tad blue off and on throughout the day for no particular reason. Trying to increase my walking a bit. The past couple of days my legs been a bit more swollen then previously so I've been doing some icing. My non-surgical knee has been talking to me a bit lately and that is bothersome. It may need surgery one day but I'm preferring to pray for miraculous recovery :heehee:because the thought of having to go through this again is a bit terrifying. This TKR is not for the faint of heart for sure. But I am improving a bit each day- I know it can be two steps forward, three steps back kind of thing. Just knowing that other folks like you all understand the journey is comforting and getting the support you need for the journey is priceless.
 

sistersinhim

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Seeing those little improvements is what gets us through this healing journey. It definitely takes a while, but in the end it's worth it.
 

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