5 weeks on

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This has been the most trying 5 and half weeks ever. Had my TKR op on Feb 27th. Left hospital two days later. Pain indescribable. No sleep, fatigued and depressed so unlike me, never been depressed in my life. I'm described by friends as the most positive person they know but I have been at such a low ebb I could see no end to this misery, which is all I can describe it as. An infection from week 2 wasn't picked up till 4 weeks in which answered how I felt. Prescribed such strong antibiotics I was vomiting, constantly nauseous and suffering from diarrhoea to add to my other symptoms. Lost interest in everything, didn't want to talk, message or see anybody. Lost 12pounds in weight (that may be a positive 😃wink. However five days ago I turned the corner and starting now to feel me. Yes, knee is still painful but bearable with Meds. Went to physiotherapy yesterday and flexion and extension is excellent. Talking discharge next visit. 

If in any doubt please pursue the infection route and insist on correct treatment. There as a lot of information on preop, the operation itself but very little on post op. I was so thankful for forums such as this to glean information . 

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  • Posted

    I never had any surgery that was as difficult as my knee surgery. The doctors lie and on their office pamphlet for knees it states, you will be back to better than before in three weeks. Then after 7-8 weeks and you are still miserable, knee swollen, can’t do crap, the Doctor has his PA tell you that you can expect pan for a year or longer!  If I knew what I know now, never would I ever recommend knee replacement.  I am 16 weeks out, today my knee leg foot are killing me.  Raining here, worse as I have arthritis. I feel I have turned the corner as I am starting to do some things finally on my own, however the more you do, the worse you hurt but somedays finally do get better!  I can tell you I am not going back to my knee doctor nor will I ever send him a patient. He lied to me about everything and left me for dead after three days when he used an anesthetic On me I told him I was allergic too! My doctor does this to everyone, he is in it only for the money! Thank god, I am not overweight, have exercised my whole life, got off the pain meds, found a new doctor. Amen!
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    • Posted

      I have had several surgeries and this has been the most challenging. I think the lack of information and care ( I’m in the UK) is shocking. The most information and support has been from the physiotherapist who has been amazing. 

      This experience has caught me totally off guard 

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    • Posted

      Same for everyone.  No info from the docs about the level of pain, possibility of post-op depression, length of recovery, etc.  Had a hip replacement in '09.  After 10 days in the hospital and rehab, I started at the gym and therapy pool 5 hours a day, six days a week...total rehab in six weeks...total.  Same with two shoulder impingement surgeries plus two spinal fusions...fast rehab.

      The knee is a completely different animal because it CANNOT be pushed to recovery.  Try it and the knee will swell up like a balloon.  I learned my lesson at 5 weeks when I did 8,200+ steps in my fit bit.  Didn't make that mistake again.  This is NOT a linear recovery...there will be advances, setbacks and plateaus.  It take time, work and, above all, patience.  Listen to your knee...respect your knee...

      Put this on your fridge...

      https://patient.info/forums/discuss/the-reality-of-a-tkr-recovery-in-one-picture-626038

      ...and don't forget your oars for the boat...

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    • Posted

      That is terrible for you. I’m

      Lucky I had my RTKR in U.K. We had the option of attending joint school pre op and it was recommended. We had exercises to do to help us strengthen prior to surgery. A full and thorough pre op medical. I saw him the day of the op and daily for the 5 days I was in hospital. 

      I had one nurse who was rude and dismissive; this was noticed, the nurse taken to task and I was under the care of someone else. I was warned about the pain and to keep in under control. Also that the meds can make you feel low and weepy. I have the option of ringing in to the consultant at any time if I have issues. The man is amazing; so personable and caring. He operated both privately and on the nhs. 

      Yes it’s painful but I have my life back. I could get out of a chair properly; couldn’t walk far as knee was locking, leg 12 degrees splayed out of alignment. I would recommend anyone having this done to(if you can afford to) pay for a Physio package: the Physio is going at my speed I’m 130 bend -4 straight. 

      He has said there are 3 stages to Physio post TKR the flexion and straightening are only the first. 

      At the moment I have odium but that’s my fault with work and doing too much so I’m

      On enforced Ice and rest. 

      Read all Chico’s post they are informative and positive. 

      Consultant surgeon has stated the op is only 30% of the process; Physio and exercise post op are the other 70%. 

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    • Posted

      I am in the UK! 😂 I was going to pre op school then they called me in for my op early. 

      So missed out. I was unfortunate in the fact I had an undiagnosed infection which knocked me for six. My consultant is good and so were theatre staff. Poor service from hospital staff and GPs surgery. 

      I have read Chicos links and they are great 

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    • Posted

      Now have had both knees done in eight months. Same consultant surgeon and anaesthetist in same hospital . Like Kim,surgeon ,anaesthetist ,theatre and recovery staff all fabulous both times but nursing care on ward left lot to be desired second time round!! Felt patient centred care had gone out the window as felt main concern was keeping me on a clearly defined pathway.Exhausted by time I got home and unfortunately would not be recommending this particular private hospital to anyone- after singing its praises since my first op. Appears patient care standards have been affected by emphasis on making money!!
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    • Posted

      I have filed a complaint re: the treatment and care i received. When I was 7 hours without pain relief and crying through the pain, they registered the level of pain as zero on my charts! Lots of other issues as well. 
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    • Posted

      Hi Kim. Going to see surgeon for preop review very soon .Will tell him about my experience of post op care and then may well consider making hospital management aware of my dissatisfaction with nursing care for most, but not all of my stay. Self funding 2 TKR procedures was a big decision to take but felt I would get the best of care. . Think after 40 years as a nurse in the NHS I can evaluate standards of nursing care and first time round care was superb.
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    • Posted

      Hi Mary Edna can I please ask which hospital this was? I know your in U.K. due to your mention of the nhs. I had amazing surgeon; theatre staff; recovery staff, anaesthesia staff; one member of Ward staff was so very rude and dismissive I asked recovery staff is something wrong with her. They reported it to clinical manager. Like you I was self funding. I also noticed decline in time some nursing staff spent with me to previous admissions. 

      Physio staff also excellent. 

      How did you get on when you saw the consultant?

      Best wishes

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  • Posted

    Welcome to the club, "Kneebie"...same for all of us....

    https://patient.info/forums/discuss/the-tkr-experience-or-wish-i-had-another-kidney-stone--524499

    The depression is not just normal, it's a Jedi Mind Trick...totally bogus...

    https://patient.info/forums/discuss/tkr-and-post-operative-depression-604195

    Want more?  Click my name and then "See All Discussions"...30 of them out there...check out the one on sleep...

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    • Posted

      Thank you, just read through your links. All very true. Somethings we should know preop instead of post op. Thought I was losing it the few times I’ve sat and sobbed on my own at night so not to distress anyone 
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    • Posted

      All completely normal.  I've had 30 general anesthesia ops in the past 18 years (mostly minor stuff like seven trigger fingers, carpal tunnel, four knee scopes, etc.).  The knee was #27.  Had a hip replaced in '09.  Got home from the hospital and rehab in 10 days...then I started crying...for no reason at all.  As in the post, my cousin Greg clued me in...the depression stopped immediately once I knew it was all fake.  Of course the docs never tell you anything in advance.  If they did, we'd all go screaming out the door...  Rehabbed the hip in six weeks...5 hours a day at the gym and therapy pool, six days a week.

      So when it came time for the knee, I figured it would be cake...just like the hip.  Silly wabbit!!!  I was soooooo wrong!!!!  I was in horrible pain, drooling on my pajamas, the opioids barely gave me any relief, no sleep, yadda, yadda...  Once I got past month #1, I started taking control of it all, especially the PT and ROM work...but you cannot push it like a hip or shoulder.  Did 8,200+ steps on my fit bit week 5 and ended up with "balloon knee" for three days.  Learned my lesson.  Kept a close watch on my step progression every day.  By 8 months, I was doing 11,000+...five miles.  It just takes time...the knee cannot be forced to heal.  

      This whole thing will probably take a year...for some more, for some less...but very, very few escape unscathed.  The road is long...the journey is NOT a linear one.  There are advances, setbacks and plateaus...expect them all.  Three things are required: 1. give the knee TIME to heal...it cannot be pushed; 2. you have to do the PT and muscle rebuilding WORK to make your recovery happen; 3. you must have PATIENCE when you don't want to be patient.  Realize that you will be a stronger person for going through this.

      Post this on your fridge...

      https://patient.info/forums/discuss/the-reality-of-a-tkr-recovery-in-one-picture-626038

      ...and don't forget your oars when it's time for the boat...

      "Never give up! Never surrender!" - Tim Allen, Galaxy Quest

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  • Posted

     Let me tell you about my story August 8, 2016 I had my total knee replacement. From the next day on I had nothing but problems my surgeon got tired of me complaining about my knee that he put me under the bus. Long story short I’m going in two weeks from now and having my total knee replacement redone. I was also told from my surgeon that my knee would be 100% better what a joke. My knee is the worst it has ever been my life has totally changed since I’ve had this knee replacement, I lost my job I lost everything I Lost me. I’m hoping to refind me and move on with my life after this surgery. So if you have a problem with your TKR get a new doctor and do not let them tell you that your fine when you know they are Wrong. 
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  • Posted

    I like this post as it shows I'm not alone

    My local NHS hospital here in the UK wouldn't do my knee replacement because of my age I'm 47 they wanted me to wait till I was in my 60's , any way found a consultant who would do it in a private hospital under the NHS, he was lovely told me I would only be in pain for 6 weeks , he was the best in the country I will be running before you know it. I'm 12 weeks post TKR I spent 5 days in hospital with the physio only getting me out of bed to sit in the chair with my leg straight on a stool for 8 hrs a day my leg was straight, so day 5 when I went to go home I could only bend it to 40 degrees and that's where it stayed for 11 weeks , my consultant when I went back was not at all supportive told me manipulation s were rare and I should of done more exercise wise. I had the manipulation last week ( he did 4 that day) the pain after has been horrendous back on the meds 4 times a day with nausea and diareah, I've lost 19lbs in weight , the last my consultant said to me was he has done his bit now it's down to me! The depression hits you like a train which is 1 thing they don't tell you, the poor man that delivers my food shopping daren't ask me anymore how I am as I just turn into a blubbering wreck haha. The whole journey has been horrendous and no way am I having the other 1 done , I'm 12 weeks post op I'm not driving yet, still using 1 stick not working, and as I've had children I thought I'd sail through the pain but the pain is like no other , can't explain it but it's crippling , I'm currently in the spare room ( as I'm up in the night in Pain and I'm comfortable so to give my hubby a good sleep) my knees very swollen and very warm to touch , I have frozen peas on it and elevated and that's even before I start my day.. 😁 sorry for my rant but I agree with you all , it's a horrible journey and 1 I hope I don't have to do again for a long time, I love these forums as you can have a moan and groan and no one judges you or puts you down, the only words I hear these days are have you done your exercises , are you bending that knee ? Make sure you bend it when you walk.. anyway my rant is over haha have a great day xxx

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    • Posted

      That's rough Natalie, sorry to hear that. In hospital the physios tried to get me out of bed when the epidural was still in effect and only just managed to catch me. A sister on the ward had the operation done in November and told me it would be two weeks till the worst of the pain went! 

      They messed up my Meds and left me for 7 hours without pain relief. Until I threatened to discharge myself. 

      The pain if managed is bearable after the first couple of weeks but the lack of sleep, extreme fatigue, depression and hopelessness on top is not. My knee still gets extremely hot and I 'ice' and elevate for hours a day. Also I cannot stand anything touching it because of the sensitivity. My 'op' foot sometimes feels so cold I wrap it up but its not cold. I also spend nights in another room so not to disturb my husband though not as often as at first. I like you need the other one doing but atm I against it. I cannot go through this or put my husband through it again. Last Wednesday was the first meal I cooked and I've started to pop out to supermarket etc but very tired and sometimes nauseous afterwards. However onwards and upwards and tomorrow is another day towards recovery. Great to share on a forum and know that these symptoms and feelings are normal. Good luck Natalie 

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