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[TKR] So grateful to have found this community

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

  1. MVP

    MVP new member

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    I think it’s common to feel fragile. I’ve had much frustration and it comes out of nowhere. Crying and meltdowns about every 2 weeks, especially when the pain is so great. My family and friends talk me through it. Hang in there.
     
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  2. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    The mood swings with this surgery are awful. Just know that they are normal. The lack of decent sleep certainly adds to the down times. It won't last. Each day you go through puts you closer to the finish line. You can do it!
     
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  3. Relle

    Relle junior member
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    So excited, actually slept for 2 lots of 3 hours last night. Admittedly with pain killers but I'm happy with that. Feeling like I've made a little progress.
    Also seem to be getting myself into a sort of a routine. Haven't ventured out into the world yet (except to GP) am still a little hesitant. Maybe will go for a short drive with hubby today to have a change of scenery.
     
  4. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    When you go for a ride, be sure to take an ice pack and try to elevate as best as you can in the car. Getting out of the house is such a mood lifter!
     
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  5. Relle

    Relle junior member
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    I was so happy to have a few hours with relatively little pain last evening. I was actually scared to mention it to hubby for awhile in case I jinxed myself. Evenings have been notoriously bad for me. Leading to many a break down waiting for the time to come to take my medication. I really thought that it meant I was going to have my first decent night in nearly three weeks. Unfortunately that didn't happen, took an hour after meds to get to sleep and woke after 3 hours with what felt like a sudden spasm in my knee. Trying to stay positive but very hard at the moment.
    I have also had well meaning family and friends trying to talk me into going places and doing things that I'm not comfortable with yet. I know they want to get me out of the house but I'm happy to stay where I feel safe and venture out with small steps. It seems most people know someone who has had a TKR who after 2 weeks or so have been nearly back to normal. I know I'm probably overreacting but it leaves me feeling like a malingerer. Has anyone else been through this?
     
  6. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Oh yes, that is a common complaint here. Somebody knows someone that was out dancing in 3 weeks or running a 10 mile race at a month. Don't believe a word of it. It takes as long as it takes for your knee to heal. You can not make it heal any faster than it will heal. But, you can sure slow it down by doing too much.
     
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  7. Celle

    Celle FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    My friend, Will, boasts that he went back to work 2 weeks after a TKR. He genuinely believes now that he had no problems and no complications - he isn't trying deliberately to deceive anyone.
    The truth of it is this:
    • Although he did go back to work so early, he did it in a wheelchair.
    • His wife helped him get up, washed and dressed, and she drove him to and from work.
    • He stopped taking pain medications, saying they were "for Sissies".
    • Consequently, he was in pain and grumpy all day.
    • His colleagues wished he had stayed at home.
    • He rested in bed all the time, except when at work.
    • His wife waited on him, hand and foot.
    • By the time he was really recovered, his wife was a worn-out wreck.
    He doesn't tell the full story, because he doesn't remember it.
    He thinks he had a fast, uncomplicated recovery, and that's what he tells people.
     
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  8. Mutti3

    Mutti3 member

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    I equate those stories to child birth, the memory gets fuzzy and embellishment of events take over!
     
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  9. kneeper

    kneeper FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Evenings or late afternoon (in my case) can hit us hard. All the activities of the day and our lack of sleep seem to add up then. I would get really cranky and learned that meant I needed to lie down for a while. It will get better.
     
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  10. Relle

    Relle junior member
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    Thanks for all the reassurance, my days are pretty good considering I just get bogged down at night. I feel that all I do is complain. I am really lucky to have support at home and from all you lovely people at Bonesmart. I know I've said it before but I feel so lucky to have stumbled upon you all.
     
  11. Spex10

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    It's still very early days yet. Hang in there. My mantra was (is) 'this too shall pass'. It will!
     
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  12. SherrieT

    SherrieT senior

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    Do you have cushions for your leg? I used them at night and it really helped me sleep. I had bilateral so I used 2 cushions. I have the one that has a channel cut into them for my let to fit into.

    Also I made sure that I set my phone alarm for my pain meds so that I got the best results from them
     
  13. Gel-girl

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    I actually slept in the next room to my husband surrounded by everything I needed including a nearby loo and freezer for my gels. Whenever I woke I read, did puzzles, posted on and read Bonesmart and watched tv and Netflix with headphones on my laptop. I had my painmeds on alarm on my phone too.

    I settled down usually when the pain abated. I started planning all the things I would do in the future - I sometimes drifted off during this planning in my head. If I didn’t, I didn’t fight it I’d do something else till I felt sleepy again.

    I think when you know sleep will evade you it’s a little easier to deal with. Find whatever works for you.

    Oh and @Celle story about her friend is so true. Don’t let other people’s stories get you down - although I understand when they do, I recently had the same thing happen to me.
     
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  14. Relle

    Relle junior member
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    As always good advice which I will take on board. I think my main problem is that I'm feeling quite depressed. Luckily I read an article on Bonesmart which gave me the heads up that it was coming so at least I don't think I'm going crazy. I just wish I'd learnt more of what to expect before surgery. This whole process has come as quite a shock to my system. I only found out that I needed a total knee replacement on 31st Jan (thinking an arthroscopy at the very most) and had surgery 17th March. The OS told me to go home and prepare myself but I didn't really know what that meant. Hindsight is a great thing.
     
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  15. Gel-girl

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    Hindsight so true! The truth only seemed to bob it’s head above water after the event. Let’s hope the depression lifts as the healing works. You can only work through this at your pace. Take it easy, Rest ice, elevate and rest again.
     
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  16. Relle

    Relle junior member
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    I'm a bit excited today, off to pick up a seated exercise bike this morning. Hoping this can give me another way of helping with my recovery. Has anyone advice on how to start using it, I don't want to push myself too far.

    This afternoon I am going back to the GP for a revision of my pain meds. I'm scared he is going to want me to cut down. Managing pain through the day is ok, sitting about a 3 but night time for some reason can jump to a 7 or 8 leaving me just managing to cope. I know there is concern about addiction but surely if it is needed it is not addiction. I'm certainly not getting a high off using them.
     
  17. Celle

    Celle FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Night time pain is often an indication that you are doing too much during the daytime. It's almost as if your nee accepts what you're doing at the time, but thinks "I'll get you for that, later" and then you hurt at night.
    Try scaling back your daytime activities a bit and see if that helps.

    It's also not unusual to need to take a stronger dose of medication at night.

    I hope your GP will give you more pain medications. You do still need them.
     
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  18. Jockette

    Jockette Senior BoneSmartie Forum Advisor

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    Make sure the bike tension is at 0 resistance. If you can’t get it to 0 don’t use it.
     
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  19. Celle

    Celle FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Have the saddle high, so you don't need to bend your knees much. Set the resistance at zero.
    At first, you won't be able to do a full rotation, so just rock the pedals back and forth.

    Start off by only using the cycle for a few minutes and increase your time very slowly.
     
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  20. sistersinhim

    sistersinhim FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    I had to rock the peddles back and forth for at least a week. Then I was finally able to go around. But, it was backwards only. It was probably another week before I could peddle frontwards. Riding is a really good rehab tool for after a tkr.
     
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