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TKR Toni Lee Recovery Thread

Steelergal

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Just when I think I might have it, something reminds I do not. Feeling like a failure. Feeling I am behind in my recovery, especially in the PT department.
THIS. I completely understand and empathize. I'm at 4 months this week and still feel like I'm constantly disappointing everyone. My ROM isn't improving fast enough (though my MUA was extremely helpful). I'm still using my ice machine. I'm still using my cane. Some people at work ask "wow, you're still using your cane? Wasn't your surgery in July? When will you be better?" (Luckily none of those people are my boss, she's been fantastic).

I will say, I'm very lucky to have found a PT group that does not push. They do massage and let me control any stretching. They let me decide what exercises I do each session and if something hurts, we immediately stop. I've felt in control of my knee every step of the way. But they still wish I was progressing faster. Believe me, so do I. But, after these 4 long months, I've learned to celebrate the tiniest of accomplishments. I rolled over in bed the other night and didn't immediately think of my knee. That's a huge accomplishment! The patience is the hardest, that's for sure. But we can do this!
 
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tlfiore

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@Steelergal THANK YOU for posting!! I empathize, I truly do. I have felt a sense of unimportance, unworthiness, shame, fear and embarrassment my entire life. My solution, which suited me and continues to suit me overall to this day, is self-reliance, independence, industriousness and gratitude.

Cannot believe some of the stuff that comes out of others' mouths. I'm dealing with how to manage people PERIOD at this point in my life. I'm slowly recognizing that while it IS lonely and painful at times, I do MUCH better with a very few select set of people in my life versus a gaggle of people who truly do not care.

This website and this forum truly are life-saving for me. I'm here for you!
 

sondrals

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Just when I think I might have it, something reminds I do not. Feeling like a failure. Feeling I am behind in my recovery, especially in the PT department.
I've felt like this since day 1. I am something like 12 weeks out and still walk with a cane. I have a wonky limp. I feel like a failure because everyone seems to know someone who was walking unaided in 2 weeks or something crazy like that. I'm not one of those people. I'm scheduled to have my other knee done in December because it's actually even worse than the one was done in August. It makes walking difficult, it makes PT difficult. But certain family members don't seem to understand why I'm not all better by now.

I'm lucky my PT lady is pretty awesome and understanding. The first thing she ever said to me was "I can see you're in survival mode, lets talk about what's going on." I think she won me over with that statement, I was like a week out from surgery and scared to death.

Also, I'm sorry your husband berated you for an accidental water spill. You shouldn't end up in tears over something like that (though I've cried over less during recovery and sometimes still do). I wish there was some magical advice I could give you that would make dealing with all this better, but sadly I don't have any. I just hope you're able to not be so hard on yourself despite his reaction and understand that it's just that, HIS reaction, it's nothing about you that caused that, it's something with him.
 

sistersinhim

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Got yelled at, hollered at and called every berating name in the book. Crumbled into tears.
You poor thing. Hearing things like this make me glad I am divorced. Going through recovery alone was rough, but I didn't have to put up with someone yelling at me like that. You do not deserve that kind of treatment. Hopefully, he'll think about what he said and come home and apologize.
When my husband left, I stripped my bed and I'm now on my 3rd load of laundry since 7:00 am (laundry is in the basement). Cannot tell you how emotional anguish has exacerbated all my physical pain. Thank you all for listening. It's hard for me to share this.
Your baby knee is awfully young for you to be doing all this. You should space things out. I would do one extra thing a day, then rest the next one, except for my daily activities. As my knee got better I'd do something, then rest for twice the time it took to do it, then do something else in the same day. The knee was always in charge.

Do some deep breathing and watch your favorite shows. Stress tightens up your muscles which causes more pain.

We have been through what you are going through and we CARE. We will be here anytime of the day or night to listen to you. Bonesmart has been like family to me as I'm sure it has been to many others.
 

flacie1

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@tlfiore great news about your follow up. I’m so happy for your progress. Glad they are developing a pain management program for you.

I hope your DH comes home and is apologetic for how he treated you. I’m so sorry he did that to you.
 

Macknit

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I'm so glad for the positive updates with the OSs visit. Something to be grateful for!!!

Husbands can be so hard at times.... your post makes me sad...no one needs berating when they have the kind of pain that follows us in this recovery. DH and I have had a few difficult moments over the past 10 weeks, because this recovery is so taxing on everyone, patient and caretaker alike. I'm hopeful he came home this evening and apologized. If not, a conversation about his outburst (once all has calmed down) is in order.

Best wishes for a better day tomorrow!
 
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tlfiore

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Everyone, please know ho much your comforting words mean to me. Husband and I have had a rocky marriage for quite some time. Managing through thick and thin, good and bad is important to both of us, of course. But my husband has never had an even, calm, soothing, nurturing disposition. I clearly see that now. And of course as we've aged, the challenges are many and different from those when we were younger.

My fear as we've aged has been this: husband's inability to cope with what life brings in the way of our aging, (including illness) WITHOUT melting down, falling apart & becoming abusive. I have no doubt in my abilities to manage just about anything that comes my way. However, I do not want to be emotionally and verbally abused 'til the day I day, especially if I'm by someone's side to help them, make their life easier.

It's ironic how things that matter to us when we are in our 20s, 30s even 40s pale in importance as we age. No one has a crystal ball, so no one can foresee the future. I wish I'd had the ability and self-worth as a younger woman to walk away from relationships I knew were not good, or healthy for me. Knowing when to end a relationship without guilt has always been hard for me. I suppose this is due to my own fears of abandonment and loneliness.

Gosh...thank you so much for listening, understanding and caring. Things will work out. Actually, independence regained from this knee surgery will hopefully help me take back some much needed overall independence and self-worth. We'll see.

As you can see, it's nearly 3:00 am Eastern Time here, so you know what that means...INSOMNIA!

Hopefully, had my second-to-last, home-based PT today. This PT stuff REALLY has me in a twist. The emphasis placed on PT throughout this process has been insane. At times I feel if I do not do everything to par and if I do not follow PTs advice to the "T" no matter, I'll never walk independently again following this surgery...it's crazy.

So, due to my dreadful Wednesday, I went to bed early-ish for me...around 10:00 pm and here I am awake. It's all good 'cause I listened to my body at 10:00 pm, took Tylenol, oxycodone, ice, elevation and fell off to sleep. I woke around 2:00 am and decided to sit up for a while, write, read, ice, elevate...fetch a snack. I'll return back to bed when I'm tired.

Thanks again everyone for your support and kindness. Somehow, everything will get back on course.
 

Mrty2019

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“Hopefully, had my second-to-last, home-based PT today. This PT stuff REALLY has me in a twist. The emphasis placed on PT throughout this process has been insane. At times I feel if I do not do everything to par and if I do not follow PTs advice to the "T" no matter, I'll never walk independently again following this surgery...it's crazy.”

###

Greetings from your neighbor to the south, Columbus, Ohio. I understand your concern about PT. I stopped PT at 5 weeks. If you have read my account of being tortured by my PT, you will understand why I stopped. I was in pain and could barely walk after each session. It took me two days to recover and I dreaded the next PT session. Then there was the constant measuring of my knee bend and extension. I just cancelled future appointments one by one.

Monday I will be 12 weeks out and have improved without PT. I walk without a limp and my knee just gets better and better.

Sorry about how your husband is handling your recovery. The added stress that puts on you has got to be very hard. — Marty
 

Macknit

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Ahhh PT, I too was up at 3:00 AM PST! This is the first time I've had such a knee reaction to the PT; being at 10 weeks, the PT team mixed up a few of the exercises and stretches. This is the second day in a row that I've woken up to severe outer (lateral) knee pain, moving my leg even hurt!! I'm trying to guess which exercise(s) are the culprit??


Good luck getting back to sleep! I'm heading in for a full workday (after 4.5 hours of sleep.)
 

caredFL

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Hopefully, had my second-to-last, home-based PT today. This PT stuff REALLY has me in a twist. The emphasis placed on PT throughout this process has been insane. At times I feel if I do not do everything to par and if I do not follow PTs advice to the "T" no matter, I'll never walk independently again following this surgery...it's crazy.
Happy your OS visit was positive and sad for the home situation.
Regarding PT, I am finding the out-patient experience better than in home. At least with out-patient you can choose and find a therapist that suits your individual needs. At least where I live we have many to choose from....... Thinking of you and wishing you a good day :flwrysmile:
 

Mmassagee

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Hi Toni,
I think you are doing extremely well in your recovery. This surgery is not for sissies. I will be 4 weeks out tomorrow. So I am about 2 weeks ahead of you in post op days.

My husband is a newly retired physician. We have been married 38 years. He is not nurturing or patient by nature.
When we first came home from the hospital, he was so overwhelmed with me and the pet care ( 2 dogs and a 19 year old cat) and the house care I literally thought I would need to call in home health nursing care! I think he was just scared and overwhelmed. This was not his comfort zone.

I felt so vulnerable I just mentally let go. Like when you are on a plane and you have no control. I decided to do an experiment. I didn’t ask him to do anything but waited for him to see that it needed doing. Like if I had a lunch tray on my lap for an hour - I was going to wait for him to see it. And he did notice! No matter how he did anything I was going to be ok with it. When he went to the grocery store and came back with laundry detergent and not dishwasher detergent I didn’t say anything. He finally noticed himself.

My husband gradually became less scared and the more he does the better he gets at it.
I think if DH gets sleep he is so much better as a caretaker.
 

luvcats

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You can bet all of us with private insurance have case workers closely following our cases, who must hear/see, "PT PROGRESSING, patient making PROGRESS, Flexion of R knee within Day 10-12 post-op standardized guidelines/goal of 90 degrees, blah, blah," ABSO-POSI-TIVE-lLY-LUTELY NECESSARY in order for insurance to continue doling out payments.
Everything you are saying is so true. According to my insurance coverage, I am allotted 20 PT visits out patient per year. Even after joint replacement surgery, they allocated 3. And then my PT people have to resubmit with more paperwork proof that they are helping me. As if you can make huge strides post surgery in 3 visits of anything. I have gotten my full allocation, but there has to be some huge scam going on in there just to keep people employed shuffling paperwork.
 

sistersinhim

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As you can see, it's nearly 3:00 am Eastern Time here, so you know what that means...INSOMNIA!
I was up and down every night for about a month. I'd sleep an hour or two in bed, then get up and go on Bonesmart in my recliner, where I'd fall asleep for an hour or two. Then, it was back to bed, and so on. This got so old that I thought I'd cry. Thank God I had friends on Bonesmart to talk to no matter what time it was.
The emphasis placed on PT throughout this process has been insane. At times I feel if I do not do everything to par and if I do not follow PTs advice to the "T" no matter, I'll never walk independently again following this surgery...it's crazy.
It is crazy and really out of date thinking. Through the years, it has been learned that aggressive PT after a joint replacement, for the majority of people, actually slows down recovery because of the extra inflammation it causes. Gentle movements with no forced bending or pushing creates a much better outcome. Not to mention, it hurts a whole lot less, too!
 
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tlfiore

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Hi everyone-I've been reading and following all of you on your recovery processes. I truly enjoy reading about everyone and I hope to provide support whenever I can. Thank you all for supporting me.

Soooooo...here it 2:30 am Eastern Time and I am awake. One of the frustrating parts for me about this process is how something might work one day/night than BOOM...same protocol totally fails the next time.

I knew I sorta held-off a bit too long on Thursday and took oxycodone 5 mg once in 12 hours. Tylenol seems to help a lot. So after my midnight routine, my knee is hurting (was throbbing earlier) and I've decided to give the Vicodin x 1 tab a try. Gotta adjust my Tylenol XS with this 'cause the hydrocodone (Vicodin) also has 325 mg acetaminophen in it/tab. Just took my first hydrocodone tab since I was inpatient at 2:00 am.

@sistersinhim you have been through so much and you sound so solid. Does that make sense? I value your wisdom and your kindness very much. Once home-based PT discharges me later today, Friday the 15th, the outpatient site will set me up, get me started. I hope & pray that all goes well.

@luvcats thank you for acknowledging the health insurance debacle. I am grateful for insurance, I am. However, talk about another layer of stress & consternation for everyone, right?

@Mmassagee marriage is tough for me...always has been. I love my husband a whole lot and he is a very good man. However, my husband is not a caretaker by nature. It's just not a part of him, so I take what I can and manage the rest. As an aside...I have 2 cats and one dog currently. My cat, Rex is 18 years old and in early Stage IV Renal Failure. My husband and I infuse Ringer's Lactate Solution sq for him every other day. I'm grateful my beloved cat has remained relatively stable throughout this recovery. Having Rexie decline is something I just couldn't deal with right now.

@caredFL been thinking about you daily! Seems like you are doing so well. Keep up the good work and thanks for the kind words!

@Macknit not sure how people can so courageously return to hard work with this pain and FATIGUE and TIREDNESS. I hope you made it through your day and got some much needed rest afterward.

@Mrty2019 your comments reinforce what I'm talking about, what I'm feeling. This entire PT push seems to be artificially over-rated, overstated and nearly unnecessary. I feel it's like the tail wagging the dog. PT efforts and interventions have gotten more aggressive, so it seems, over the past 5-10 years, or so. Makes me wonder. I wish you well in your recovery. Sounds like you are doing fine without aggressive PT...

Thanks again everyone! Gonna read your posts/threads for a while and attempt sleep once again.

PT supervisor will be here @ 1:00 pm to evaluate me for discharge.
 

Macknit

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It has been interesting to return to work, for certain! I think this recovery has given me a different perspective about work also. I'm definitely not as stressed about competing in the workplace as I was even a year ago....Why?? I'm in a second career that has taught me a lot and has utilized my counseling skills (by education); but I know I'm heading toward retirement in 13 1/2 months. So I don't think it's "courageous" as much as it is just relaxing into the final stretch :)!

I am blessed to have a job where I can elevate and ice my leg most of the time also....and that is the biggest blessing!

My fatigue from the surgery was gone by my 4th week, now it's just dependent on whether I get woken at 3:00 AM with PT related pains (I didn't last night so I'm doing well today)!
 

NewToMe

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@tlfiore today is 9 weeks post op with RTKR and needed MUA on Wednesday i wanted to share some of my experiences with you.

1. I have done the fluids for a cat before. I am so glad you figured a way to make it happen. In our house that was a two person job.:catbutterfly:

2. There has been more than one episode of loud bad words exchanged between hubby and I during this recovery. I distinctly remember 1st night when pain pump catheter broke and he had to remove it from my leg. I yelled....YOU have to take it out, time to "man up"! With more bad words.... you know what's normal for your relationship. Most guys can't handle their spouse ill or infirm. It frightens them! Sometimes that comes out as anger. yell back! (Says the former sailor!)

3. Based on what you are doing around the house and issues with pain management, I agree with others that you may be overdoing it.

4. Sleep is weird! I have learned to sleep in 3 to 4 hour chunks and work hard to not get upset if I wake up in middle of night. I am at the point where I can follow other recommendations to get out of bed and walk a lap around the house. That seems to help now. First couple of weeks, no way. Plan what you will do when you wake up while you elevate and ice. :loll:

5. PT is for YOUR benefit! You get to drive! I have told more than one PTthe following: you are done, I will not do that, STOP.

6. Hang in there! Keep posting! Hug the fur babies, it helps!
 
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tlfiore

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@NewToMe thank you for your supportive comments. Yeah...loud bad words...uggghhhh...I HATE it! It's difficult enough for me to manage disagreements when I'm feeling well. Feeling under the weather makes everything seem worse. But I notice any emotional tilt DEFINITELY exacerbates my physical pain.

So, it has been a rough few days but I'm managing. As I lose track of days here, Thursday night into Friday is the night/morning I recall as pretty awful. Decided to try hydrocodone (Norco...I still call them Vicodin) in lieu of oxycodone, per the direction of my OS's PA. Why the switch, I'm not quite sure.

After the usual, 12 midnight, 3:00 am, 6:00 am sleep/rest scenario, I woke around 8:30 am after taking one Norco (hydrocodone) for pain around 6:00 am. OMG! I made it to the bathroom and vomited. I was extremely dizzy & disoriented. My head felt like I had a 100 lb brick weight on it. I could barely open my eyes. I fell back onto the bed and couldn't lift myself. I felt like I might pass out. I was all alone with my furry kids and it was frightening.

I managed to get up around 11:00 am and felt only a bit better. I knew PT was coming to discharge me, so I had to get everything together with morning meds, quick ADLs, Ernie to the curb, etc. I remained nauseous, lightheaded, dizzy, etc with a pounding headache.

PT supervisor Jennifer came at 1:00 pm and she was quite nice. I'm discharged to outpatient PT but I have to arrange transportation. She was very concerned about my physical state and urged me to call my OS.

I called OS yesterday around 2:30 pm and explained what happened. OS discontinued the Norco, increased oxycodone to 10 mg po q3-4 hrs pro (which I primarily need for bedtime and pre-PT/post-PT) and he apparently added on a third med...Flexoril, Tramadol, etc...cannot remember which. Not sure why this third med was added on but I will not take it if I do not have pain that isn't controlled with Tylenol & oxycodone.

Here's the thing...in order to receive any form of narcotic here in Michigan, a person must drive to the prescribing physician's office, show ID and pick up the written prescription...no telephone orders into pharmacies anymore. My OS is a 70 mile round trip from here. It's Saturday and the offices are closed 'til Monday.

I'm going to see if I can find someone to make the trip to my OS's office on Monday for the scripts. In the meantime, I'm parceling out the remaining oxycodone I have, stretching the pills out 'til next week (which I can do). My neighbor travels to my OS's area on Tuesdays to babysit one of her grandchildren. She will help me if I cannot get anyone to make the drive on Monday.

I doubt husband will want to back-track 70 miles Monday to my OS's office prior to going another 55 miles one way to work...uggghhhh. I don't even want o ask him, or make the request.

It will be okay. I just want to slowly and steadily get back on my feet. Keep reminding myself I am only at post-op Day #15. Despite it all, things here a very good.

Thank you, friends.
 

flacie1

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@tlfiore wow that sounds really scary about the meds. So glad you are ok. I hope you can figure out a way to get your prescription, I’m lucky my OS has multiple locations in the area and one is close.

Hope you have a relaxing and healing weekend.
 

caredFL

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My OS is a 70 mile round trip from here. It's Saturday and the offices are closed 'til Monday.
Wow, I never thought of having to go so far to pick up meds. Florida requires you to present ID to pickup narcotics as well, but there are so many pharmacies close by and they do allow the prescribing physician to submit electronically. Continue thinking of you and hoping you get those meds sooner than later.
 

NewToMe

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So sorry about the Norco! Same thing with me! Dizzy nausea hallucinations too. But we knew that before the TKR.

Check with OS office on Monday. My tramadol did NOT require a paper prescription, but pharmacy would only fill for a week. Same for flexiril.

Oxy is a different ballgame for sure.

Keep posting rooting for you!
 

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