Dreading the replacement

Posted , 14 users are following.

Hi, I am schedulled to have a TKR on the 28th of this month, and I am dreading it.  I have a zero pain threshold and the thought of being in so much pain is really frightening.  I am not a squeemish person and take most things on the chin, but I can't deal with pain, which is clearly going to be a problem cry  I am also concerned that I will not be able to cope once home, (especially so close to Christmas) When discharged have those of you who have already had surgery managed to get up and down stairs to bed, is it easy to change the white stockings, how soon can I expect to be walking reasonably well.  I normally do a drinks party for everyone in my road just before Christmas, which is quite hard work, do you think I should forgo playing host this year, or maybe delay it until lte January?  I am in North Somerset, any of you brave people near me?

Best wishes, Liz.eek

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  • Posted

    hello liz from switzerland! bless you, i can understand your concern but my tip would be to take it step-by-step and remember that every knee is different. anything you read on here may or may not apply to you so don't read too much into it.

    most important: make sure your surgeon and gp are aware of your fear of pain and make sure they are generous with the pain meds. there are so many different pills out there, your pain CAN be managed.

    i started managing stairs week two, with sticks, taking it one-by-one. but you have to be confident with the sticks so make sure you get physio sessions from the get-go so she can show you how to be as mobile as possible. but even with this, it is a struggle at first and tiring. so you may want to sleep downstairs the first couple of nights!

    honestly, i would scrap the drinks party. i would be amazed and full of admiration if you felt you were able to host a party. if it was hard work before the op, then you simply not have the energy or the motivation to do this. concentrate all your energy on exercising, elevating and icing. believe me, you will have your hands full with getting better.

    don't worry, you will get there. but i would be lying if i told you it is a walk in the park. we are all here for you to give you support every step of the way. and soon you will be one of us, post TKR!!

    britta - 8 weeks post op!

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  • Posted

    Hi Liz, If you are having the TKR then you must be in a lot of pain already. Nobody on here will lie to you and tell you that it isn't painful, because it really is. You will have to rely on painkillers to get by, take each day and each problem as they come in the knowledge that it will get better.

    Be selfish Liz, only think of yourself and what will be easiest and more comfortable for you. Put yourself first, if you can't manage the stairs, sleep downstairs. Don't even think of doing the drinks party, take any pressure off yourself.

    You will probably be emotional and cry, lean on the people on this site. Nobody judges you here, everyone is on your side, we are all in the same boat.

    I am in Australia, but I expect there will be someone near you.

    Check in each day, best wishes Caz

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  • Posted

    Hi Liz, I had my first TKR in April this year and am waiting to have my other knee done. I phoned the hospital yesterday and they said they would get back to me. I was told late October or November. I too am worrying how I will be for Christmas. After my first I was so tired but dont worry about the pain. It is manageable and with the right medication and icing is bearable. Everyone deals with this differently. We are all here with you on this site. I get great comfort from it and know I will be back on for reassurance afterwards. Good luck and keep in touch. Will let you know when I get my date. Will send you my e-mail address too so we can e-mail.
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  • Posted

    Hi liz I do feel for you I felt exactly the same and I am 12weeks post op on Thursday.. Firstly liz the stairs terrified me , so before the op I got myself a second hand stair lift and it has been a lifesaver. It cost £595 and looks brand new. Secondly perhaps put any of your usual plans for Xmas on hold.you will only be 3weeks away and you will find this a difficult stage which we all go through. The stockings are not easy to change if you live alone as I do. I had to have help. I am not going to tell you that it is an easy ride Liz but you will get good pain relief. Expect to be very tearful and uncomfortable at night. It will pass in time thank god. I am 82 and am feeling more myself every day. I am walking 3/4 of a mile each day and doing all my normal things.i live in birmingham which is a long way from you and obviously don't know what your health care facility's are. I was home alone after hospital but my daughter in law came in 3times a day. She did my shopping until I was 6weeks and could safely drive again. I wish I could have told you better things but remember we all heal and recover at different rates. I wish you well my freind and hope you make a speedy recovery. From tucks x
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  • Posted

    Hi Liz,

    First of all, I would definitely consider postponing the drinks party.  The first few weeks after your op need to be spent looking after YOU.

    I think you'll find your hospital will insist you are able to climb the stairs before they discharge you.  DON'T be scared by that.  It really isn't too difficult.

    Now the stockings are a different matter.  Such a nuisance, but vital.  Hope you have a very patient other half!

    How soon you will be walking normally is a million $ question!  We all recover at different rates.  Maybe by 8 weeks +? but that is not set in stone.

    Keep coming back here.  We are all a mine of helpful information!

    Lynn 19 weeks post op

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  • Posted

    Hi - I agree with what everyone else has said.  Pain killers are the key to dealing with the pain.  I could walk up and down stairs, very carefully with sticks, the day I came home but made a point of doing it only morning and evening as my stairs are very steep - so you can do it.  Just do as much movement as you can each day, physio is very important, and I had hydro therapy which was excellent for the first 6 weeks as well.  once the knee has started to heal I found massaging with oil made all the exercises easier as well - and lots of ice packs, 4 to 6 times a day.  You can do it.  I would suggest the drinks party comes to you - get everyone to bring a plate of food and a bottle and they can wait on you this time!

    Good luck.

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  • Posted

    Hi Liz

    i'm 8 weeks post op and just been discharged from Physio

    i won't kid you the first few weeks are the most painful 

    but take your pain med regularly and get as much rest as you can 

    as for stairs ...they are actually good exercise ...I have steps to get to my house ...steps to get into the house. And the toilet is upstairs... One step at a titime and slowly and you will be fine.

    but forgo the drinks party and let someone else take over this year.

    all the best with your op.

    there's plenty of really good advice on this site from people at all different stages.

    jean x

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  • Posted

    You've already received lots of good advice from the others so there's not much I can add. All I'd like to say is that the pain was not as bad as I feared. You obviously need to get the painkillers sorted and take them regularly. I spaced mine out over 24 hrs. As for the stairs I never found them a problem. They show you how to do it in hospital before they let you out. My husband had to help with the stockings, using a plastic back on the foot first then sliding it out through the hole in the bottom. They'll probably show you this at the hospital too. I would have found it difficult to put them on myself so I hope you've some help available. He also even helped washing my feet! It's a real pain at first not being able to shower but those first few weeks soon go and you get stronger each week. I would forget about hosting the drinks party though. I was very tired at first and needed regular naps during the day so I would just look after yourself. Exercises are vital for your recovery so I would use all available energy getting those done. Good luck and keep us posted on how you're doing. Jen x
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  • Posted

    Hi

    just put plenty of talcum powder on your feet and the socks slide on 

     

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  • Posted

    Thanks everyone, not sure I have got the hang of this forum, do I respond to your kind posts this way (by clicking on reply to Liz??)  I have decided to postpone my Christmas do, shame really, because last year was the first year all the people had got together, and most have lived here more than thirty years, it took a newby to get them talking!  I have decided to do a coffee morning before my op and tell everyone that Christmas this year will be an Easter do, that will give me something to aim for!!

    I do have help, probably more than most, I have a cleaner who does right through once a week, an ironing service and a gardener, so the general running of the house will be ok.  I don't have anyone to help with the stockings, my adult son lives next door, but I certainly don't want to ask him, even though he will be doing a lot for me.  Do you think I will need to arrange some sort of care package just for socks etc, it seems a little over the top!! My worry over the stairs is that not only do I have to get up and down them, but I will need to carry a very elderly small dachshund as well, she can't be left on her own and will need to move about with me.  Yay, it's all such a hassel, all I want is to be able to walk my big dogs along the beach each day without hobbling on sticks as I am at the moment!!  Will this lump of metal really work and allow normal life to return?

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  • Posted

    Liz....I think you are going to shelve the Christmas of 2014.  It sounds like this is a much anticipated activity but please dont punish yourself mentally or physically making it happen this year.The 1st suggestion most of us would give, talk to your medical team about your pain concerns. Spell out completely any known side effects. There isn't any way to downplay pain associated with this procedure and you have to start working through it immediately but pain meds taken on a schedule will help. Letting pain get ahead of you makes it difficult to catch up with. One of the things you need to do is practice being good and kind to YOURSELF. Others needs and wants will have to wait, you will have a lot of healing that will take your time and energy. Of course, this doesn't mean being filled with self pity but you won't have a lot of you to spread around. Good luck and I wish you well
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  • Posted

    Hi Liz........all I can say is just "slow your roll" ! You are about to change your lifestyle for months ahead. This is straight talk Pain? Yeah you are going to have. It.....it will come and go . My husband brought one of the guest room beds downstairs for when I got home from the hospital ...THANK GOODNESS!  I hope you have someone to wait on you hand and foot....you will need that  for at least a week or two. Little things that you so naturally do on your own, you will need help with. You will get frustrated, mad, depressed . There WILL be good days 😊. You will walk with a walker and then a cane, not so bad at least you will be getting around. I started going up the stairs after two weeks. Yeah one step at a time with the cane and trust me a positive attitude. Of course the therapist  was here to assist me the first time.  I"m sorry that I cannot SUGERCOAT this TKR but better to know the truth. I am a strong willed person, love to be Independent , pain tolerant and 67 years old........but all I can say is be ready. Thanksgiving/Christmas  well let's just say you won't be hostess but you will have the MOSTEST😉, good luck
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  • Posted

    think the same as the others , drinks party in jan , sounds good some thing to look forward to , pain can be managed , you will do the stairs before you go home , you will be ok when your home ,but likley to feel weepy at times , relax and let others do for you sure that will be a change for you , take your meds and do your exercises and any thing your not sure about ask on here ,ive found it great help , we all seem to find different ways of doing thing s , as far as the stockings go i never had any ,we just had to inject daily again was easy once you did it once .good luck 
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  • Posted

    Thanks everyone for your stirling advice, i am sure there will be so much more I will need to ask along the way.  My doctor refered me to 'book and choose' and I am having it done at Shepton Mallet treatment centre with NHS, but I am told it is way better than most of the private facilities around here. It has a zero infection rating and has done since the day it opened, which is brilliant and comforting to know.  Also, they have virtually no waiting time so not long to fret.  I would have had this done by now, but had a debridment three months ago next week, (failed)and my surgeon insists on a three month gap between surgery.  Two things I would like to ask, what did you take to wear in hospital, did you take sweat pants, and if so were they wide enough over the knee? Finally, did any of you lose weight, I have read that this can be quite drastic .... which would actually be something to look forward to!lol  Liz
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    • Posted

      Sounds a good hospital. I took some loose skirts to wear but didn't actually get dressed while in hospital. I was in during the heat wave we had last  summer so was glad to stay in my nightie (as did all other patients on the ward) I wore skirts for a few weeks at home then loose trousers/joggers. As long as your sweatpants are loose you should be ok. Whatever is comfortable for you. As for losing weight - yes, I lost over 1/2 a stone! Unfortunately, I've put some (but not all!) of it back on 😊 . Good luck! Jen 
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    • Posted

      In hospital I stayed in my nightwear.  Like Jennifer, I had my TKR during the heatwave.

      Once home I wore soft cropped trousers and t shirts.  Legs must be loose enough to pull up over knee for icing.  The cryocuff will be your best buddy. My husband iced my knee every two hours for ten minutes. Reduced swelling and gave pain relief.

      Then transferred to wide leg joggers.  Fabric should be soft as scar is extremely sensitive.

      Lynn 19 weeks post op

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    • Posted

      hi liz .. is the mentioned debridement similar to an arthroscopy? if it is, i think your surgeon is so wise not to operate straight afterwards. i had an arthroscopy done 3 weeks before my op and i believe - though my surgeon won't admit to it - that this is the main cause for my problems now. i reacted very badly to the band they use to tie off the blood, had huge bruises and lots of swelling. i couldn't bend or walk down stairs normally so i cannot imagine doing an operation on top of this is very smart. so many brownie points to your surgeon.

      i was in hospital for a week (i am based in switzerland) and took everything bar the kitchen sink with me. anything you need to be comfortable, take it with you. i took my own pillows and blanket and never regretted it. make sure you take slippers with you that you can slip into but you feel stable in as you will be required to walk fairly quickly. as for losing weight, it depends on how you react to all the medication you take. i never felt nauseous, didn't get constipated ... it was business as usual hence no weight loss for me sadly! the dress code question: i couldn't wait to get out of the snazzy hospital gown and into my comfy pj's. "loose" is the way to go as lynn pointed out, you will be needing to pull your trousers up a lot every day.

      all the best liz. you will be fine, your hospital sounds excellent. take it day by day and keep us posted on here!

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