After knee replacement surgery

Posted by beatricefay @beatricefay, Jun 16, 2016

Had left knee replaced 9 days ago. Right knee two years ago. Having a problem with inflammation so hard to bend knee and exercise. Trying to ice and raise knee above heart. Doctor suggested getting compression hose. Anybody have this experience and can offer suggestions. So tired all the time from pain interrupting my sleep and painkillers. My insurance refused to pay for the painkiller recommended by surgeon so have to take one with more opiates. That’s frustrating. Two years ago it was covered but now too expensive for me to use. Seems the drug companies, not our doctors are determining what we use.

@johnbishop

@jmjlove you are describing the kind of pain I felt with my first round of polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR). I feel very fortunate not to have the pain others here have described after their TKR. Right now I'm trying to figure out how to get the swelling in my leg to go back to normal. I hate to stop working on the rehab and resting more but I think I may give the doc a call tomorrow and see what he says. My right foot ankle and leg are much bigger than the left foot. I'm sure it has something to do with my lymphedema but no way in you know what can I get a compression sock over that monster. Took off my one zippered open toe compression sock from the right leg this evening to take a shower and you could definitely see how the toes were much fatter and then the leg part above the sock below the knee was puffed up about a 1/2 inch fatter. Looked like the Pillsbury Dough Boy's foot. ☺ But it doesn't hurt 🙁

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Yep, I've had very bad swelling, too. Skin stretched so tight it was shiney. All we need is some glitter and we're all set. Put on some shorty shorts and sport that big ole scar with pride! Seriously, not much can be done, but ice and elevation. Part of it is all the Iv fluids. Which you may be off now.Wait, are you home? If so, you'll get lots of exercise just unloading all your fluids. Even if you don't do therapy, there are a few things you can do for yourself to at least keep your circulation flowing. But, I'm sure you know that already.

If you don't mind, please post a weekly pic so we can see how your swelling and incision is doing. I love to see the progress. I am confused though. Did you, or did you not have both knees done, John?

God bless!

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@debbraw

Yes Teresa @hopeful33250 – they definitely fade. Here are mine. The one on the right is from April 2017. The one on the left is from 10 weeks ago – late January 2019. It's not beautiful, but I'm not embarrassed to go swim laps. And it won't be long with my left knee until I'm ok to wear a dress. And bear in mind that this is a real close up. I'm 68 and I'm hoping nobody gets this close to gander at my knees!!

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@debbraw Your scarring did fade nicely. Did you use any special products?

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@johnbishop

Hi Chris! @artscaping. I can hear it know…not the "help! I've fallen and can't get up" but the "help! My butt it stuck to the wall and my feet won't come down." ☺ I watched a video and my first challenge would be laying on the ground close enough to the wall where I could spin around and raise legs straight up. That would be an interesting sight. You never know though, might give it a shot when no one's around.

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Crack me up! You don’t have to scoot your butt to the wall. You can just raise your legs up. We do this every morning. While in that position, we point and flex the feet 10 times. Take a break and then up they go again and turn your ankles 6 times in one direction and 6 times the other direction. Helps with the numbness in the feet too. We don’t do enough for our ankles and we need them to be strong. I will FaceTime with you if you like. Be secure and safe tonight. Chris

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@debbraw

Yes Teresa @hopeful33250 – they definitely fade. Here are mine. The one on the right is from April 2017. The one on the left is from 10 weeks ago – late January 2019. It's not beautiful, but I'm not embarrassed to go swim laps. And it won't be long with my left knee until I'm ok to wear a dress. And bear in mind that this is a real close up. I'm 68 and I'm hoping nobody gets this close to gander at my knees!!

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Very nice looking scars! I know it’s not a competition, but after looking at yours (and John’s…. doozy), I could not resisit taking a closer look at mine (don’t worry, no photo upcoming unless specifically requested!!), and I was pleasantly surprised how short it is. With leg straight, about 4 1/2” long, at 90 degrees bent just barely under 6”. That seems to be at the very low end of what is considered normal. Some surgeous specialize and advertise “short scar technique”, but my OS is not one of them. Got lucky, I guess. Not that scar length has anything to do with knee function, of course. I had surgical glue, and super tight sealing, long, sticky cover over incision, and just 2 additional single sutures. Let me shower right away, what a relief!

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@jmjlove

Yep, I've had very bad swelling, too. Skin stretched so tight it was shiney. All we need is some glitter and we're all set. Put on some shorty shorts and sport that big ole scar with pride! Seriously, not much can be done, but ice and elevation. Part of it is all the Iv fluids. Which you may be off now.Wait, are you home? If so, you'll get lots of exercise just unloading all your fluids. Even if you don't do therapy, there are a few things you can do for yourself to at least keep your circulation flowing. But, I'm sure you know that already.

If you don't mind, please post a weekly pic so we can see how your swelling and incision is doing. I love to see the progress. I am confused though. Did you, or did you not have both knees done, John?

God bless!

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@jmjlove I think the swelling is down a little from yesterday. My daughter kept telling me elevate elevate elevate when she was with me Monday and Tuesday but I wanted to walk walk walk. Here’s the week 1 swelling. Hopefully the left leg will get me through without replacement.

April 17th – Added Week 2 swelling photo. Staples come out tomorrow! Still a lot of tightness in the right leg and have been unable to put on my compression socks for my lymphedema. Got a lot of walking done in the driveway yesterday – 2877 steps and 5 sets of the knee lifts and flexion stretches. I have also been able to work from home this week which is a plus for me. Bummed out today – it's Wednesday and my lunch day at the Old School House Cafe. Love their homemade soups. Hope all is going well for my new TKR friends. Taking it one step at a time ☺

image

TKR-Week-2

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@debbraw

Yes Teresa @hopeful33250 – they definitely fade. Here are mine. The one on the right is from April 2017. The one on the left is from 10 weeks ago – late January 2019. It's not beautiful, but I'm not embarrassed to go swim laps. And it won't be long with my left knee until I'm ok to wear a dress. And bear in mind that this is a real close up. I'm 68 and I'm hoping nobody gets this close to gander at my knees!!

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Thanks for sharing your scar photos. They look so much better than I was expecting. It’s encouraging to know that overtime they will fade away. I live in Arizona half the year and we wear a lot of shorts and swimsuits. You’ve made me feel much better about the procedure.

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@debbraw

Yes Teresa @hopeful33250 – they definitely fade. Here are mine. The one on the right is from April 2017. The one on the left is from 10 weeks ago – late January 2019. It's not beautiful, but I'm not embarrassed to go swim laps. And it won't be long with my left knee until I'm ok to wear a dress. And bear in mind that this is a real close up. I'm 68 and I'm hoping nobody gets this close to gander at my knees!!

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I’ll be doing bilateral TKR April 18th. Your knees look great! I’m hoping for similar looking results. John, right now your knees are frightening me a little bit. Too new I guess.
I found this Mayo site a few days ago and was looking for PT tips. Frankly, I think ignorance is bliss in some cases. I was assuming this procedure and recovery would be difficult and painful but hadn’t really talked with anyone who has had bilateral TKR. Now I realize I was unaware of all the complications that might occur. But, I’m going to try to keep a positive attitude and hope that I’m one of the lucky ones.
I’ve been cooking and freezing lots of dinners. My husband lowered our bed thanks to the suggestion made by (now I can’t find the name), I borrowed a walker, toilet riser with handles, a shower chair and a cane. Im rearranging furniture to make sure a walker can make it through the paths.
Any and all advice would be appreciated. As each day nears the TKR procedure I feel anxious and impatient. Afraid of the pain and hard work ahead and impatient to have it over with so I can go on long walks and possibly even hikes with my Husband again. Anyway, I’m sure I’ll be on this site after surgery. I’m glad I found it. Donna

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My advice…look forward to the procedure. Sure recovery will be tough but think about the alternative option of doing nothing! Be disciplined with the PT!!!! I'm coming up on my two year TKR anniversary and have been back to playing COMPETITIVE singles and doubles tennis for some time with no pain and full movement…..last night 3 hours of quick burst actions front, back, side to side, twisting with a two hander, and full weight bearing; even though I'm only 140 lbs. The reality of "so I can go on long walks and possibly even hikes with my Husband again" can and will happen with your perseverance!!!

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Hi Teresa. I had bilateral tkrs 5 months ago next week. It really has gone well. I went in slightly naive as well, but my optimism and determination pulled me through. Sounds like you are all set. I felt
anxious as my surgery came closer too. It didn't help that people continually told me how brave and courageous I was. 🤔 It makes you wonder if you made the right plan at times. But for me it went well, and I am so GLAD and thankful I chose this route. I tended to think of my surgical knees as one instead of two separate surgeries. Each knee reacts a little differently. I am back to swimming and weight class 5 times a week. My walking is fluid and pain free. Get ready to work hard afterwards. It will be your full time job. You go, girl! Good luck.

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It seems you are experiencing so much frustration from all you have been through regarding your knee replacement. I have struggled with an original patella dislocation from a work injury since 2006.
Fourteen years later, & three unsuccessful knee surgeries, the last surgery in 2013 (TKR), I have experience constant debilitating pain, not only within my TKR, but for the last five years, I’ve endured lower back pain, sharp hip pain, my opposite knee, which has been my total support since my original injury, is failing.
My last TKR was unsuccessful leaving me with a fixed flexion contracture, meaning I’m unable to bend or straighten at my knee joint, so I ambulate with what feels like a fused knee/leg.
The constant pain I experience from this nonfunctional knee replacement has caused so many other structural problems throughout my back & lower torso. The constant pain is so exhausting. I haven’t been able to sleep at night because the all of the pain I experience never subsides! This knee injury has caused extreme limited (tearful) normal life activities.
It’s difficult for me to understand that the original injury of a dislocated patella has now resulted in (according to curt orthopedic surgeons) a suggested amputation of my leg beginning at my femur bone. My faith in orthopedic surgeons over the years has caused me to question their professional medical oath & ethics.
I hope for a Devine miracle from our Lord & Savior to manifest a simple resolution in my life to improve my daily challenges, heal my ongoing health issues & bring a team of professional orthopedic surgeons in my life before I am too old to enjoy the normal activities of life with my family & friends.

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@jeffkirc

My advice…look forward to the procedure. Sure recovery will be tough but think about the alternative option of doing nothing! Be disciplined with the PT!!!! I'm coming up on my two year TKR anniversary and have been back to playing COMPETITIVE singles and doubles tennis for some time with no pain and full movement…..last night 3 hours of quick burst actions front, back, side to side, twisting with a two hander, and full weight bearing; even though I'm only 140 lbs. The reality of "so I can go on long walks and possibly even hikes with my Husband again" can and will happen with your perseverance!!!

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@jeffkirc, Thanks for the encouraging words. So glad to hear you’re back to doing the things you love. I’ve already decided I can’t/won’t do anything that requires running. Just too klutzy. 4 years ago I broke my left shoulder and Shattered my right shoulder learning PickleBall. The paramedics said they come almost every other week to the pickleball courts for broken wrists, torn Achilles, etc., I had the worst injury by far. My husband had to do EVERYTHING for me for weeks and weeks. He made me promise Not To Play again. So I’ve sworn off anything that requires running. Golf, walking, hiking, cooking, reading, playing cards, painting, etc. can keep me very busy and don’t require an acceleration in speed. HaHa.

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@gobigorgohome

Thanks for sharing your scar photos. They look so much better than I was expecting. It’s encouraging to know that overtime they will fade away. I live in Arizona half the year and we wear a lot of shorts and swimsuits. You’ve made me feel much better about the procedure.

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@johnbishop It looks like the swelling is coming down . My legs hurt all night it wasnt a nightmare, kept me up along with dry mouth and a new symptom I was so cold I had to put socks on winter p.j,s and heavy bathrobe now what caused this ?? I'm finally warmed up but don't know. I'm going to have a laundry list for this new Dr I'm going to see .Hope I get some answers .

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@lioness

@johnbishop It looks like the swelling is coming down . My legs hurt all night it wasnt a nightmare, kept me up along with dry mouth and a new symptom I was so cold I had to put socks on winter p.j,s and heavy bathrobe now what caused this ?? I'm finally warmed up but don't know. I'm going to have a laundry list for this new Dr I'm going to see .Hope I get some answers .

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Sorry to hear about your new symptoms @lioness. I hope you get some help from your new doctor.

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We need to know our limits!

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