← Return to Night Pain: Using a knee wedge after total knee replacement?

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Hi @connie1559 – I just had a left TKR on 1/29/19 (my right one was April 2017). Both times they were adamant about not putting any support under the knee – pillow, wedge, anything. The reason as @ellerbracke stated is extension – it is difficult to get the extension back and supporting the knee from underneath impedes the progress. I'm sorry to hear about the pain you are having. I wake up when its time for my pain medicine, but once I take it, I go back to sleep. Are you having trouble getting back to sleep after your meds?

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Replies to "Hi @connie1559 - I just had a left TKR on 1/29/19 (my right one was April..."

I have had trouble sleeping since Day 1. I have a history of insomnia. For about the last 3 years I have been sleeping almost like a normal person. The surgery put a stop to that. Even the night after the surgery I was in too much pain to sleep.

I had my surgery done by a surgeon that came highly recommended. It was a wonderful hospital and the nursing staff couldn’t have been more kind, caring, efficient and attentive. I was walking 3 hours after my surgery, PT started the next morning, and was twice a day until I was discharged the morning of the 4th day. I have continued at home and will start formal PT on 2/11.

The first day after surgery, my pain was not well controlled. When my surgeon made rounds the second day I mentioned it. He made an adjustment and I had less pain. Of course some pain is to be expected.

At discharge, I was given a week’s supply of pain meds. They lasted through the 9th day, and I called for a refill.

I was shocked at the lecture I got from the doctor’s nurse about opioids and addiction. She said she would ask the doctor and call me back. She called on the 10th day to say he was authorizing a 5 day refill and that was the last refill.

I’m still having significant pain, especially at night. I’m also having a lot of thigh pain and swelling. Supposedly that is because of a tourniquet and is not uncommon. The thigh pain is worse than the knee pain, which is almost gone. Right or wrong, I have been trying to save some of the pain meds for PT. I have heard it can be quite painful.

I can remember prior hospitalizations and surgeries in the past 25 years. The theory about pain was “Pain never felt is pain never felt”. Not so these days. Now it feels more like “One opioid can cause addiction”. I think if I had better pain control at night I could sleep. I think lack of sleep has a cumulative negative effect on healing and progress. It’s a sign of the times.

I have heard good things about acupuncture. I think I may give that a try.