Almost five months post TKR surgery

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I had total knee replacement on July 21, 2014.  Five days in hospital.  Surgery went well.  Pain management was good, pain pills plus Ibuprofen every 6 hours.  Recuperating well until I was taken off of pain meds.  Found out they were masking an ulcer I had developed in my stomach from the Ibuprofen.  Such pain.  After three visits to ER got proper diagnosis and feeling better.  :0)  Released from physical therapy with 110 bend on operated knee and 120 on unoperated knee.   PT said that normal use would help the bend increase.  Try walking up and down stairs normally but sometimes just do not like the pain, so I walk up one step at a time.  Pain is manageable most of the time with Tylenol.  Knee very still upon sitting with it bent for any length of time.  I just ordered a peddling machine to use while I am sitting watching TV.  My surgeon said it would take up to a year for it to really be well.  Scar tissue inside causing pain when skin hits replacement inside.  This will subside he said.  

     I am 67 years old and am glad I had it done.  The pain before was so bad I stopped going places.  Nothing stops me now from going shopping, food shopping etc. etc.  

     After considering all that was cut in the surgery I can understand why there is pain and stiffness.  If I were younger I think it would have been easier.  I hear of people having both knees done at one time.  To me a crazy idea.  I met a lady at Cracker Barrel yesterday.  She was at lease 15 years older than me and she had two canes.  Had both knees replaced at once and is really having a hard time.  :0(  

     I do not know if its my imagination or not, but it feels extremely cold inside of my knee.  Is it possible to feel cold from the replacement inside there?  Just wondering.  

     Otherwise hoping this may help someone else.  

 

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  • Posted

    Hi glad your doing well but one thing I will say is it is definitely not easier if you are younger. I made the mistake of thinking this I am 44 and had my tkr on sept 9th this year in hospital 8 days due to cellulitis am doing ok now 125 bend and full straighten but still struggle if I walk too far not with pain as such but the whole leg stiffens up and I ache like I've been hit by a bus. Still feel really really down and am still wondering if I should have had this done although it is better now than before lol have got my 12 week check with my consultant tomorrow so I'll see what he says x
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    • Posted

      You're so right Joanne! 

      I'm 63 but was very fit. I have been all my life .

       Always at the gym - competition weights etc 

      then i injured my knee falling from a12' wall on an assault course! 

      My doc said my fitness would be a burden and he's right. 

      Now that my operative knee is all but useless for a while i feel totally useless too! 

      The pain was horrific in the early days and snatches of 1 hour sleep in the night common. 

      I now wake 3-4 times so it's improving 

      But the pain is stopping me strengthening the quads to any degree  and now i am to have a baker's cyst at the back of the knee! 

      I wonder if that's common? 

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    • Posted

      That's exactly like how I feel, I am 8 weeks 4 days and was 42 when I had my TKR, Im just bouncing back today after 2 days off severe pain when walking dont know why but seems to have come right. I can fully straighten but only have a 102 bend at last PT visit, unoperated leg is at 112.

      Cheryl NZ

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  • Posted

    Hello

    your post made me feel better I'm 14 weeks post op and struggling with pain on standing and the pain wakes me up during the night ...I sleep for about 2 hours

    but if I'm like you in another 3 months I will be really happy

    and yes my knee feels cold too but I thought it was down to the weather in the UK 

    All the best 

    Jean 

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    • Posted

      Hi Jean, after I was off the pain meds I had trouble sleeping too.  So I take an over the counter sleep aid called Melatonin.  It works so well for me.  So I'm not losing my mind, it does feel cold in my knee.  I live in the mountains of North Carolina in the US so I thought it was the weather.  But I'm now sure it's the knee inside that really feels cold.  Good to talk with you.  
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  • Posted

    Hi Merrie,

    You sound like you are from the U.S. by the terms you use. Where are you located?

    I am also 67 and had my TKR on July 22, so we are at the same stage. I am feeling all the same things as you describe as well. I still go up and down stairs one step at a time. I can manage going up normally at times, but going down I still have lack of confidence, afraid I'm going to fall.

    My knee is extremely stiff when getting up from a sitting position and especially getting out of bed in the morning! My bend is good - was almost 130 when released from PT, but can't seem to get it as straight as the "good" knee.

    I'm still doing the exercises/stretches at home that the PT sent home with me. Are you? Do you know how long we are supposed to do them? I also ride a stationary bike for 30 minutes about every other day, and try to take a 30 minute walk every day.

    I too am glad I had it done because of the pain I was in and how it affected my life. I wish I was better than I am however, but as you said, it's no wonder it takes so long to recover considering what was done in the operating room!

    Thanks for writing. It puts a lot into perspective & I know now that I'm where I should be at this stage smile

    Betty

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    • Posted

      Hi Betty,  Yes, I am from the United States.  I am located in Jefferson, North Carolina.  So you are the same age as I am.  Interesting that we are doing just about the same.  I didn't mention in my first post that I have a lot of swelling in the operated on knee.  The other knee is just fine.  PT said swelling would prevent leg from bending properly.  So I am wearing compression knee socks and it really helps the swelling and pain a lot.  Stiffness, no, but pain from swelling, yes.  My surgeon on Monday said it would take a total of a year to feel good again totally.  So I've got until next July.  Sure am glad I do not need surgery on left knee.  All looks good there.  Thank goodness.  smile  
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  • Posted

    Oh, I also was having stomach problems from too much ibuprofen, but after I lay off for awhile, the stomach problems go away, so I doubt I've developed an ulcer, but I know I would have if I continued taking it so often.

    I don't feel the coldness you describe, but sometimes I feel a twinge where the metal is and wonder if the metal is what I'm feeling if I turn my leg a certain way. It's a strange sensation.

    Betty

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