Total Knee Replacement: Swelling

Posted by mamndink @mamndink, Aug 11, 2019

7 weeks post tkr right knee. 0/120. Intermittent pain at top and bottom front knee when walking. Seems like the swelling never goes away. Icing 4x daily and resting in elevation. Out patient PT 2x week, gym for cycling and few stretching exercises 5x week. Shouldn’t the swelling go down?

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@sueinmn

Hmm, are you still icing regularly? It is a really good strategy at the end of your day to elevate and ice to alleviate the stress of getting around all day. When I had one of my hip replacements, and ongoing swelling, I also got my leg up and iced at lunch time (kept a big ice pack in the office freezer.) That continued for over 4 months.
Sue

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Hi sue yes I have a cryotherapy machine that I have on overnight and during night I move it around to get different areas ….. I do my exercises every 3 hours so I ice for at least half hour after each session

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Hi Chris as I was telling sue I ice a lot it does help…. I was in touch with a therapist that does mfr she just called me back this morning I waited few weeks….. I am going to call her tomorrow… I read in some of the post mfr is so helpful I am willing to try anything…..I have been doing massage not very helpful

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@ezas123

Hi Chris as I was telling sue I ice a lot it does help…. I was in touch with a therapist that does mfr she just called me back this morning I waited few weeks….. I am going to call her tomorrow… I read in some of the post mfr is so helpful I am willing to try anything…..I have been doing massage not very helpful

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Good idea @ezas123. I hope she is an Expert level trained by John Barnes. Yes ice and elevate are critical. And so is exercise. Even if you are led by a PT there is always a need to repeat them at home. Do you use or have a recumbent bike of some kind? Some folks like using those especially in the winter. At this point, I am considering it because every day is getting a little colder for a 2 mile walk along the river…..especially when it is windy.

What kind of medication if any are you taking? How are you sleeping?

Chris

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@artscaping

Good idea @ezas123. I hope she is an Expert level trained by John Barnes. Yes ice and elevate are critical. And so is exercise. Even if you are led by a PT there is always a need to repeat them at home. Do you use or have a recumbent bike of some kind? Some folks like using those especially in the winter. At this point, I am considering it because every day is getting a little colder for a 2 mile walk along the river…..especially when it is windy.

What kind of medication if any are you taking? How are you sleeping?

Chris

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Hi Chris for the most part I sleep well now I do wake up few times a night though most times I can go back to sleep lol but there is the rare occasion I can’t I just watch a movie exercise earlier….. I do have a home therapy from my pt I unfortunately fo not have a full stationary bike at pt I was unable to get around …. I have peddle one I was using here at home before surgery to try tone my muscles I can get that over I started including that in my therapy two days ago …. I get out and walk a little everyday as much as I can tolerate ….. as far as medication ibuprofen 4 twice a day last 2 days I have taken 1 tramadol …,, I not sure if it is weather related or if I am breaking up more scar tissue ….. can I ask question when does it stop getting stiff …. I mean I exercise feels good for few min I sit down ice ..,. I try massaging it out does not work

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@ezas123

Hi Chris for the most part I sleep well now I do wake up few times a night though most times I can go back to sleep lol but there is the rare occasion I can’t I just watch a movie exercise earlier….. I do have a home therapy from my pt I unfortunately fo not have a full stationary bike at pt I was unable to get around …. I have peddle one I was using here at home before surgery to try tone my muscles I can get that over I started including that in my therapy two days ago …. I get out and walk a little everyday as much as I can tolerate ….. as far as medication ibuprofen 4 twice a day last 2 days I have taken 1 tramadol …,, I not sure if it is weather related or if I am breaking up more scar tissue ….. can I ask question when does it stop getting stiff …. I mean I exercise feels good for few min I sit down ice ..,. I try massaging it out does not work

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I have same question. When does it stop being so stiff and like it weighs 1000 lbs.?
I am in week 4. Down to one half Tramadol a day, about 4 Tylenol and 2 Advil. Still pain but just want to get off the Tramadol. It does help tho’.
So unsure of what is best.
Therapy going slow. Dread the exercises but do them twice a day as I must. Just don’t see much improvement.
Advil does help more than Tylenol but then stomach issues and retain fluids so not good for the swelling.
Not liking any of this.

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I had both knee's replaced 6 weeks apart. That hurt! The swelling is a major obstacle for me. But icing 2 to 3 times a day while elevated above your heart helps. What I find to be very helpful is after my last icing of the day while my knee is still elevated my wife will use both hands 1 on each side of my knee cap and push to move the swelling and fluid down my thigh. After about 5 or so minutes after that I do not get up for 10 minutes so to let the fluid get absorbed into my muscle group in my leg. This helps me a great deal. I think 1 of the most important things to do is exercise pre-surgery and stretch as much as you can. I bought a flat board with foam on 1 end with 2 velcro straps to be able to stretch my knee downward so I was able to lay the back of my knee flat on the ground. I am 2.5 months post op and am making very good progress.

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@treader

I had both knee's replaced 6 weeks apart. That hurt! The swelling is a major obstacle for me. But icing 2 to 3 times a day while elevated above your heart helps. What I find to be very helpful is after my last icing of the day while my knee is still elevated my wife will use both hands 1 on each side of my knee cap and push to move the swelling and fluid down my thigh. After about 5 or so minutes after that I do not get up for 10 minutes so to let the fluid get absorbed into my muscle group in my leg. This helps me a great deal. I think 1 of the most important things to do is exercise pre-surgery and stretch as much as you can. I bought a flat board with foam on 1 end with 2 velcro straps to be able to stretch my knee downward so I was able to lay the back of my knee flat on the ground. I am 2.5 months post op and am making very good progress.

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Good job @treader. And thanks to your wife for helping you keep the fluid down. You are so right to give credit to your pre-surgery exercises. I like the stretch setup. Keep it up…..you will be so happy. How is your pain level?

Chris

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Hallo all TKR veterans. I'm two weeks into my (first) TKR. Your comments have been so helpful both before the surgery and now. Yesterday I was feeling that the pain is getting better, however as I got into bed last night and searched for that sweet spot where it's possible to lie down and fall asleep, I was hit by horrendous pain that wouldn't go away, and still hasn't this morning, in spite of painkillers. Very little sleep. MY PT came this morning and took me outside for a single-crutch 100 yard walk, which was tough. He said that this often happens – the two step forward and one step back. The pain is like it was straight after the procedure. Did you encounter this? Would love your comments / encouragement!

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@moragsmum

Hallo all TKR veterans. I'm two weeks into my (first) TKR. Your comments have been so helpful both before the surgery and now. Yesterday I was feeling that the pain is getting better, however as I got into bed last night and searched for that sweet spot where it's possible to lie down and fall asleep, I was hit by horrendous pain that wouldn't go away, and still hasn't this morning, in spite of painkillers. Very little sleep. MY PT came this morning and took me outside for a single-crutch 100 yard walk, which was tough. He said that this often happens – the two step forward and one step back. The pain is like it was straight after the procedure. Did you encounter this? Would love your comments / encouragement!

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Yes but happened when at about 3 months pain finally left and for first time I could sleep. Didn’t take hardly any narcotics post op cause it didn’t really help. At about 4 months took steps backwards and was in tears. Therapist told me it was normal and that it would get better. Talked with a few others who had had the surgery they said it happened to them too! With a good therapist you will get there but it takes a lot of hard work on our part. I’m just 7 months post op and am doing well. I just have to do my exercises and stretches every single day! Keep up good communication with your therapist. They have the knowledge to fix so many issues we come across. I am trying to get my thighs strengthened. One day at a time.

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You can also try gently massaging the swollen area. I did that and it worked for me!

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