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[MUA] So grateful to have found this community

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Recovery Area' started by Relle, Mar 30, 2018.

  1. Relle

    Relle member
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    I had a TKR, left leg on 17 March. I thought I was prepared for the process but it has definitely been harder than I could have imagined.
    I have had some very low times, my first 2 days post op I was confined to bed with very low blood pressure and I also had reactions to various pain medications because of my sensitive gut. The PT tore one of my stitches trying to force my leg to bend the first day post op.
    I was really beginning to question my decision to go ahead with surgery.

    I was so grateful to find this site 2 days ago. I was beginning to feel isolated even though I have support from my family. So much of the information given to me by the hospital staff was contradictory or non existent.
    After reading and using the advice on here I feel I have started to make a little progress. Reading other people stories has been both educational and inspirational.
    I have given myself permission to let my body heal instead of pushing it to its limits and beyond.
     
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  2. lovetocookandsew

    lovetocookandsew supremo

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    Welcome and congratulations! Someone will be along soon with a list of suggested reading, but in the meantime the library is available. Good to hear you plan to allow your body to heal itself instead of allowing a PT to harm it! Remember-ice and elevation are your new best friends.:ice::ice::ice::elevate::elevate::elevate::sleeep::sleeep::sleeep::ice::ice::ice::ice::ice::elevate::elevate::elevate::elevate:
     
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  3. Beckadeez

    Beckadeez senior

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    Glad you found us! This site is a blessing. It will really help you deal with the ups and downs, and there are a lot of them. Some do PT while others, like myself, do not. It’s a long road but you can do it!
     
  4. Spex10

    Spex10 post-grad

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    You are definitely not alone @Relle!!
    Slowly but surely you'll recover, your knee will bend and you'll sleep better.
    Till then, you've got us!
     
  5. Roy Gardiner

    Roy Gardiner FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    I am not surprised given that idiot's action. Never see them again!
    :thumb: That's the way to do it. Now our standard reading material

    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
    elevate
    ice
    take your pain meds by prescription schedule (not when pain starts!)
    don't overwork.
    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.
     
  6. Gel-girl

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    You’ve made the right decision joining our community. I would have felt so isolated in the early days if I hadn’t found Bonesmart. Information from the hospitals and physio are so mixed. I did some PT which didn’t really help so I too have let myself heal. It’s taking a while. I have a very supportive family too but the best support has been on here especially when I feel low.

    Read the articles, they are short and easy to read. The main one is rest, ice and elevate. There’s lots of different ways to ice but try to organise a good system. There are ones mentioned in discussions on here. I found gels to be my favourite and using pillows to elevate in bed and eventually I use my shower stool on high setting with pillows for comfort to elevate from the sofa. Some people have mentioned lounge doctor I think it’s called which looks good but I saw it too late and a little bit pricey in the uk. Your probably all organised. There’s so much good information here we are so fortunate.
     
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  7. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Please don't let anyone push or pull your leg. Better yet, don't let them even touch you. Shortly after surgery, pt came into my room and had me sit on the edge of the bed with my foot on the floor. She started moving her foot toward my foot to force my knee to bed. I immediately yell, "No!". She responded that she was going to tell on me and I told her to go ahead.

    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 PT. But, I didn't just sit around and do nothing. I took care of myself, my house and yard as my knee allowed me to do. As I healed, I did more. But, my knee was always in control! This was enough therapy for me and would be for any tkr patient. All the awful pain of PT is so unnecessary.

    All you have to do is use it in your daily living! Your knee knows how to rehab itself and doesn't need anyone telling it how. Just use it and it will come back like new! You have to be patient, though, it doesn't happen quickly! ADL,(activities of daily living), going to the bathroom, brushing your teeth and bathing, fixing a light meal, getting something to drink and or a snack, those kinds of things will be all the exercise your knee needs. If you just use it daily in your living, you will have a quicker and less painful recovery. We know what works, we've been there!
     
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  8. Josephine

    Josephine FORUM ADMIN, NURSE DIRECTOR Administrator

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    You're lucky it was only one suture! We have stories in here of worse, the worst being someone who actually had his knee cap broken by the physio forcing his knee. Very much worst case scenario, I'll admit, but it's a cautionary tale I unashamedly repeat. As sistersinhim said, NEVER allow a PT to touch your leg in any way at all.

    If you are concerned about refusing to do therapy, you need to read this Saying no to therapy - am I allowed to?
     
  9. Relle

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    Thank you for all your advice and encouragement. I am not normally a patient person, maybe that's a lesson I need to learn.
    will take the time to read through facts sheets, still have to find a routine that works for me a night as I am up and down a lot. Hopefully gets better with time.
     
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  10. Jockette

    Jockette FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Welcome to Bonesmart, best place for anything joint replacement related!

    I learned the same thing from Bonesmart and I’m so glad I did!

    I had a sneaky PT also. I was not yet 2 weeks post op and he was pushing for 90/95 degrees. I was sitting on the side of the table and he had lowered the table so my feet touched the floor. After about a minute he continued to lower the table, which by default made my knee bend more. I sat there crying and he said I had 90 and did I want to try for 95? He told me it was my choice. I hadn’t found Bonesmart yet, but I said no. That’s when I got the speech about the window of opportunity and my surgeon wouldn’t be happy if I wasn’t at 95 by Monday at my 2 week check up. (This was the Friday before).

    He told us to work on it over the weekend. So, thinking this is what we had to do, we spent the weekend with my husband pushing my foot under the dining room chair until I couldn’t take it. I don’t know how many times we did it.

    On Monday everyone was so happy when they pushed me to 95.

    I found Bonesmart several weeks later and learned not only was all that unnecessary but it would do more harm than good.

    If I have a next time, there will be no PT and no one will push my poor traumatized kne. It makes me mad just to remember those early days.
     
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  11. SusieB

    SusieB junior member

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    Hi I’m glad you found this site too!
    We are all in the same boat...so to say!!
    I am 4 weeks post op heading to 5 on Tuesday!
    I have not done any PT ... my leg was straight at 0 degrees and 90 degrees at two weeks!!! I was lucky I guess.... my OS said just do exercises and walk at home ... so I walk a lot!! Knee is still pretty tight but do bend and have a little pedal machine i can sit on the couch and pedal which he recommended too!
    This is an awesome site for rest ... ice... walk... and move at your own pace!! No pain here!! At 4 weeks sleeping is getting better! Actually found myself pushing up from chair using the Left knee which I didn’t do a week ago!! So it’s baby steps ... and patience which I found I don’t have a lot of ... but I’m getting better at that too!!
    Welcome and enjoy all the wonderful people here for YOU!
     
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  12. Relle

    Relle member
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    Had a melt down today over the littlest thing. Lack of sleep and frustration is getting the better of me. I didn't think that I would become so fragile. I have been taking the time to read other people's experiences which has given me a clearer idea of what to expect over the next few weeks and onwards. Hopefully over the next few days I will start to look at things a little brighter.
     
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  13. Roy Gardiner

    Roy Gardiner FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Don't worry about it. Really, don't. TKR is a physical and mental roller coaster, don't beat yourself up over a bit of bother today. Remember: arthritis pain is bad, is permanent and will only get worse; post op pain and mental fragility can be bad, are temporary and will only get better.
     
  14. Spex10

    Spex10 post-grad

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    Lack of sleep is an awful aspect of this recovery that people aren't prepared for somehow. I found that if I had 7 hours across the 24 I felt OK. In practice this was about 4 in bed at night and the rest in naps throughout the day. I just let myself doze off whenever I felt like it. That phase lasted about 8 weeks after which I gradually found I was sleeping longer at night and less during the day. My first all night sleep was wonderful. I never take it for granted!
     
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  15. Relle

    Relle member
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    Nights are certainly a trial. I am glad I read about depression on here a few days ago. Last night was a real low point. Trying to accept that this process is going to take some time, and some magic pill wasn't going to fix it is hard.
    I am lucky my husband has taken time off work to be with me and I have someone to talk to in the middle of the night.
     
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  16. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    I am single and during those long restless nights I came on Bonesmart. There was always someone here to talk to who understood and cared!
     
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  17. HoneyB

    HoneyB senior

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    @Relle, I'm six weeks post-op today and nights are still a challenge for me. I'm usually reading encouraging things on BoneSmart in the wee hours of the morning (like now). You're never alone here. Somebody has always "been there and done that" and is willing to listen or help.
     
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    Last edited: Apr 2, 2018
  18. Spex10

    Spex10 post-grad

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    Using tablets and mobiles at night leads to sleep problems! Research has shown that it's the blue light quality that causes it. I know it's tempting to log on in the night but for sleeps sake don't !
     
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  19. SusieShoes

    SusieShoes FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Sleeplessness is something medical teams should warn patients about, because it's almost a guarantee that's going to happen. It's a rare TKR patient who sleeps like a baby throughout recovery.

    Tablets and phones are bad for sleep, but for TKR recovery they aren't the cause of the sleeplessness and can be helpful for diversion. I popped in on BoneSmart often in the middle of the night for the first couple weeks, and my phone allowed me to quietly browse or read instead of waking up poor Mr. Shoes. In the long run, of course, one should ditch the devices for a good night's sleep. When sleep returns, that's a good thing to keep in mind.

    Until your sleep gets better, @Relle, take naps whenever you can catch them. All sleep is good.
     
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  20. Relle

    Relle member
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    Thanks for your comments and advice. I've had a few surgeries in the past, some major. I suppose I expected to recover much more quickly. It was a bit of a shock to realise how low the process would take for life to get back to normal. I am learning now though that it is all about patience, time and gathering tools to help make the journey a little easier. I am lucky that recovery is my only job and time is something I have plenty of.
    I have a friend who is planning when to go ahead with a tkr after many years of being put off buy her doctor. I will certainly be referring her to this site so she can be better prepared.
     
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