Bilateral TKR - anyone out there with experience to share?

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I had bilateral TKR 6 weeks ago . Does anyone have experience of this that they can share.  A lot of advice re exercise etc refers to ‘ good’ Leg which I don’t have! 

I have difficulty getting comfortable in bed therefore my sleep is poor , an hour at the most at a time .  Any suggestions welcome? 

Thank you 

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  • Posted

    Greetings from Australia. I had bilaterals in Mar 2016. Took me around 18-24 months to feel happy about my new knees. I am allergic to most pain meds so got on to hydromorphone which worked a treat for me. I slept 3-4 hours a night. And napped when I could. A pillow between my Innes helped. The surgery is brutal as you know and healing can take a long time. Hang in there. Keep your weight under control. Exercise in warm water or try to ride a stationary bike often. I have spine and hip issues after my bilaterals however life is what we make it. I'm 66. Good luck!

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    • Posted

      Hi I’m 63 had TRN on 21st June this yr infected caused abscess pain has been vile pain medication has been hard as I’m  allergic  To most I’ve been offered 

      I make myself do the exercises daily up/down stairs walking but not far due to pain. I’ve just got a mini  exercise bike and a knee cuff is on order and should come today. Sleeping is bad awake every  hr during the night due to pain have to get out of bed to stand rub knee then back in. Started to use ginger pure  essential oil  As  apparently that is good for pain and swelling  Again worth a try! My left knee need a replacement but until I can get the right knee better it’s on hold also being told by the hospital I’m on the high risk  register   For infection has put me off 

      Good luck stay strong and keep positive 

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    • Posted

      Hi I feel the ginger oil is working I use it am & pm on both knees the only thing I don’t like is the smell 😂😂 I just wish for the pain to go I do my exercises daily but after resting it becomes so stiff  then I feel I’m back at square one again still I try to stay strong and keep positive 

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  • Posted

    Knees not Innes.
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  • Posted

    Hi

    Google Air Cast ice bucket and knee wrap, (s)  not cheap, but worth it as the Knee wrap with iced water can be filled without getting out of the bed or chair, from the ice bucket.

    Good healing

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  • Posted

    I can imagine your sleep must be very difficult it was bad enough with one tho by 6 weeks has eased a lot. Icing and elevating more than I ever believed would be necessary has been my friend - I bought an Aircast cryocuff and it has been worth every penny. I kept it loaded up with ice by my bef with that cuff to hand and I could put it on and ice during the night without even getting out of bed. Very soothing. Otherwise I just experimented with pillow and slim flattish cushions ( chunky won’t work as well) under and betwerh knees and found sleeping propped up a lot semi sitting helped. On the worst nights I got up and snoozed in my big recliner chair that seemed easier but obvious I just happened to have one. Have you thought about asking dr for some zopiclone - a pretty clean modern sleeping pill - just even for a week - it might help restore a more normal sleep pattern because it you are napping in daytime a lot as you may well be then that won’t help.  

    Why did you have them both at once out of interest I gather that’s pretty rare! 

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    • Posted

      Hi , my surgeon recommended getting them both done at same time as they were both bad. It was a tough first 10 days , which I wasn’t really prepared for . 

      Thank Larive 

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    • Posted

      Are you in Australia it seems to be more common there? I can only imagine how tough those first days were and don’t envy you!i hope things improve for you. It’s not a straight road tho be prepared for ups and downs! I’m finding I can do more and more but my knee does react and so keeping up the EXERCISE/ ICE/ ELEVATE/ANALGESIA routine is vital. Surgeon told me biggest mistake people make is stopping or reducing pain relief too soon  then the exercise goes because it hurts then it stiffens then you are in trouble! 

      But do tell them you were not properly prepared I think that’s common and as one who works in the industry - they need the hear that and take it seriously! 

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    • Posted

      Morning 

      I asked my Surgeon to do both knees at the same time but he said no I am so glad he did because I have no confidence in him whatsoever in fact I’ve discharged myself from him now waiting to go under a different consultant

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  • Posted

    PS just reading other posts - it might be too early for bike I think I still can’t do that without extreme discomfort despite quite good range of movement please  ask Physio advice  before doing it - but I did find exercising in water - swimming pool helped a lot started that about week 7. And I see others have mentioned the cryocuff so just to say beware some people may just be selling one component or the other and you do need both cuff and flask! But no need to buy the electric pump some sell as extra unless you could not hold the flask up ( about 15 seconds) to fill the cuff or have someone do it for you. As a guide I paid £90 on Amazon. 

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  • Posted

    I'm 55. Just hit 13 weeks. I also had trouble sleeping. Couldn't get comfortable. I was not taking pain meds after 13 days. Didn't like feeling out of it and constipated and sick to my stomach. I started taking 4 ibprofen every 8 hours. At night , 2 of them were Advil PM's. I place a pillow at the end of the bed to prop my feet up while laying on my stomach. It kind of suspends my knees from full pressure. My PT has worked me slowly and I am doing very well. I was miserable at week 6. I can't say that I felt anywhere near normal until week 10. Each week was a little better. Moist warm before exercise an muscle massage by PT before starting helped me soooo much. Ice following each session. I do 2 PT visits per week and do swimming pool exercise on my own once a week. Stamina has been my biggest issue. Those around me want me moving more, but PT says listen to your body. The more you move the better, but I'm in need to sit alot. I am unsteady in grass or rock driveways especially if there sloped, but getting easier. This has been the hardest mind game! I totally underestimated the emotional impact this would have on me...lol...thought I was a thought...NOT. I know I still have work to do but, the sun is starting to shine. Hang in there. Knee replacement IS a BIG deal. Your body is going through alot during the healing process. I still have rough nights, but in a couple of weeks you'll start getting the sleep that you so desperately need. Good luck, it's close to better!

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    • Posted

      I meant to write TOUGHY...thank you auto correct. Progress is soooo slow. Started driving at 6 weeks but getting in and out of the car sucked! You got this.
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    • Posted

      Thanks Slm911 . Yeah I wasn’t prepared  for the emotional impact either . Unfortunately I can’t take ibuprofen or any anti inflammatory as I am asthmatic , so just paracetamol .

      I’ll give the pillows at end of bed a go , hopefully that will give me some relief.

      I can walk around house OK but I still struggle on the stairs .

      Only seee Physio once every 2/3 weeks  but doing exercise regime at home .

       Onwards and upwards 

      Thank you 

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    • Posted

      Can’t you have done codeine or Co-codamol? It’ll make a big difference especially at night. I could not have coped at that stage with just paracetamol and see what my surgeon said to me - earlier post on this thread. You might need to up your fibre intake and / or get a mild laxative to avoid constipation but if the paracetamol not giving you enough pain cover talk to them ! 
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    • Posted

      Hi , no I can’t tolerate codeine or anything morphine based meds  they depress my respiratory system  -so just paracetamol for me . I also don’t react well to anaesthetics so got op under spinal with block and was awake throughout .I think that was one of the reasons my surgeon recommended both at once .its not so much pain but discomfort that keeps me awake .

      Thanks again 

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    • Posted

      Yes I cannot   Believe How it has affected me emotionally they do now warn you about that I was told 6 wks and I should be up and running and back at work yes I did end up with a nasty infection due to an Internal stitch I told the consultant I felt something was not right and he just kept saying you have a low pain threshold is but when it came to taking the clips and he said how long is your leg being like this I said from day three but you would not believe me  internal stage I told the consultant I felt something was not right and he just kept saying you have a low pain threshold is but when it came to taking the clips and he said how long is your leg being like this I said from day three but you would not believe me  so I ended up being on antibiotics for most of my recovery time and a hole in my leg that has to be at daily   My pain medication has not worked so I’m now using ginger essential oil as that helps with pain and swelling are use it twice a day I’m not going to say it’s 100% but I’ve noticed a slight difference Sleeping is a nightmare as the pain wakes me up and my knee locks I’m going to try the pillow tonight to see if that helps 

      I’ve placed an order for a knee cuff as that has been  recommended 

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    • Posted

      Hi 

      Which part of the world are you from I am from the U.K but have travelled to the USA and I used Avele which I bought and in the USA. As hospital gave me codine, but this made me sick.

      So I only used Avele.

      Good healing

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    • Posted

      yes it is hard to get comfortable, the propping up / sleeping in chair did help a bit, it's tough because if you are not well rested everything else feels worse I think!  I had spinal anaesthesia too but with heavy sedation so I take my hat off to you if you coped with all that awake!  I do think worth asking GP about zopiclone though. 

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