Knee sugarcoating

Posted , 9 users are following.

I have two people at my church that went through tkr and it seems like they had no issues at all. Their fast recoveries influenced me to go ahead and get my tkr. I Have been through hell every since I had it July 12, 2016. They strongly recommend that I do therapy but they didn't warn me bout the pain. I wish they would have been more honest. I knew that I needed a tkr and was going to get it done but I was blindsided by how painful it is. After joining this forum, and getting honest feedback, i feel they lied about the recovery. What do yall think?

1 like, 18 replies

18 Replies

  • Posted

    I already know about the pain. my cousin had both of hers done..
  • Posted

    I think that everyone heals differently and also it depends on what we do in our recovery... at this point I wish I hadn't had surgery.. but maybe in a few weeks time I may make some progress..I have lost my confidence at the moment and wish the doctors told me this could happen... Im in the public system and no one tells u a thing.. they just give you something to read. I know Phillip you must feel 5 steps forward and 6 steps backwards... the thing is we only have forward to go... we have to suck it up.. and keep going... I just feel like drinking Champagne all of the time..... Cheers..

    • Posted

      Just because one person breeze through doesn't give them a license to tell the next person struggling they're doing something wrong. This happened to me. I have been dealing with stiffness and I was told that I should not still be sore and stiff 8wks post op. They strongly recommend that I see another orthopedic surgeon. I know that the next orthopedic surgeon is going to tell me that my first surgery wasn't done right. They're going to want to do a revision and start me over. Ain't a devil in hell going to get me to agree to this! I'll walk with a limp before I do that again. I started using my cpm machine and recently the stiffness is loosening up. I went from 74 degrees to 92. I'm on my way to recovery at my own pace. Thanks for your encouragement.

    • Posted

      Of all the many people I've talked to here and elsewhere, I have only heard from one person who was off her meds and was 0 / +115 IN TWO WEEKS!!!  That is waaaaay beyond what people can and should reasonably expect after the operation.  Most people fall in the 6 month range for getting past the worst of it with some effects (stiffness, swelling, clicking/popping) lasting for up 18 months post-op.  It's all very individual.

      One problem is that no one prepares you for this, especially not the docs.  The pain, the meds, the PT work that has to be done to break down the scar tissue, the amount of time it takes to recover and get back to work, post-operative depression, sleeping...  So many issues with no preparation for it.  Hardest recovery I've ever had to endure...and I've got 4 1/2 pounds of titanium in me.

    • Posted

      This is what I'm talking about. Realism. Too many people downplay the pain to make themselves look strong but you keep it 100 and I respect that.

    • Posted

      I try to help people who are depressed about not being "where they expected to be" in just four weeks.  Really?  Expectations are your worst enemy.  Gotta be Zen: "I will be better when I'm better."  Like telling the kids in the back seat: "We'll get there when we get there."  

      People have to realize that this is gonna hurt and take a long time to get past.  Period.  Beating yourself up over it is useless.  You have to be determined and focused on the PT and subsequent gym work.  The pain is transient; treat it that way.  Focus on what matters: walking again without a limp or cane for the rest of your life.  That's the goal...the rest of it is irrelevant. 

    • Posted

      I told the doc last week that I was happy with my progress. I was at 74rom. Since then I have increased to 92rom. You are so right, the pain isn't as bad as it used to be and pt and the YMCA are my buddies. You give me strength to keep moving forward thanks.

    • Posted

      Chico absolutlely all you say is so true, makes so much sence, and nice to here the honestie.

      i was in a lot of pain before tkr, but nothing could of prepared me for what I was to go through.

      would never want to go through the first 5/6 weeks again.

      pain,no sleep, constipation was unbeleavable.

      i also have Lupus which means joint pain is something I live with every day, but hand on heart nothing could of prepared me for this, but Iam hoping I've started to turn the corner.

      my pt is limited due to Lupus, what is the very best exercise I can do to break down the scar tissue, and can you tell me how important it is (the scar tissue).

      do not want to make things worse now maybe I've turned a small corner.

      iam also the only carer fir my husband, so time not always on my side to think of my self.

      your information throughout this dreadful experience has been so helpful

      and very informative, and more importantly very honest.

      thank you so much

    • Posted

      If you were on Hydrocodone (Vicodin, Norco), you can expect constipation.  Synthesized from Codeine; adds acetaminophen (Tylenol).  Oxycodone (Percocet) has similar painkilling effects without the constipating side effects.  Also contains acetaminophen.  If you can handle the Tylenol, ask your doc to switch you from the Hydro to Oxy.  If Tylenol is bad for you, PURE Oxycodone is called Oxycontin.

      Remember...these are ALL very highly addictive opioids and are used for short term major pain relief (30-60 days).  After that, most people titrate down to 800mg Ibuprophin TID (RX) or Tramadol (RX).  Also, you can try Voltaren Gel (RX), the very best topical anti-inflammatory on the planet.

  • Posted

    First of all, I am so sorry that this has been so difficult for you. But in answer to your question... People heal very differently. Personally, I healed very quickly and did not find the pain to be terrible. However, I would never say there was not ANY pain. The 2nd night after surgery was pretty intense until they could establish a line for morphine. I only needed it for a few hours though. I was on narcotics for about 2 weeks until I couldn't stand the constipation but found that the pain control from over-the-counter pain killers controlled the pain very well. My ROM was always way ahead of where they expected and I  had no problem with the physical therapy, in fact I was "kicked out" early because I progressed so fast (I had bilateral TKR by the way).

    I do not say this to boast in any way or try to make anyone feel bad because they did not heal as quickly. Every person is unique and heals differently. I do think that it is important for those of us who have healed quicker to make sure we share our experience too. If I had read this forum before I had surgery, it would have scared me to death and I doubt I would have done it. 

    So, my answer would be no, I don't think they sugar-coated it. Just as every woman experiences labor and childbirth differently, everyone heals from surgery differently. 

    • Posted

      I can bet that you don't make the next person struggling feel like they not doing something right because you had a fast recovery. You know that your pace of recovery was ahead of the norm and you don't make the next person struggling feel like they not doing something right.

    • Posted

      Sorry for the repeated phrases.
    • Posted

      Yes it was ahead of the norm just as a woman with a 2(or less) hour labor is ahead of the norm but it happens to lots of women. Saying that she had a 2 hour labor is not meant to make someone with a 24 hour labor feel like they did anything wrong. It just happens. 

      People are different. Just beacuse I healed quickly doesn't mean I did anything differently. It just happened. You asked a question and I answered it. Some people do heal quickly, I did and it sounds like the people that encouraged you did as well. Some people don't. It doesn't mean anything - it just is. I TOTALLY agree with Chico Marx's statement above. 

  • Posted

    Hi Phillip!

    Pain is awful to deal with, and it makes a person irritated and downright SAD!😓

    I had five years of increasingly horrible pain in both knees. It changed me into a different person. At one point I actually thought that AMPUTATION might be the way to go. I had seen people with those amazing Cheetah Legs running marathons. I was having trouble making it down the driveway to my mailbox and back!

    For me, the pain I had BEFORE my two TKRs (June and October of 2015) was much worse than my surgical pain. In the hospital I was given a nerve block prior to surgery, and it was in for two days. I also got IV pain meds and alternating pill meds. I DID have what I call my "steak knife in the thigh" pain in my left leg following surgery. This, I discovered, was from the tourniquet during surgery. It really DID feel like somebody plunged a STEAK knife in my thigh!

    As I moved my heavy leg around, walked with help to the bathroom every half hour, and began physical therapy I felt better. Getting off the opioids and blood thinners at two weeks post op was REALLY GOOD. My Ibuprofen helped better to handle my pain and especially my swelling.

    I prayed a lot, napped for short bits of time throughout the day once I got home, iced, elevated, drank lots of water and did some walking around in the house every hour.

    Around 12 weeks I began to feel more like ME and less like a patient dragging around a tree trunk filled with cement (my left leg!)

    My right TKR was easier. This surprised me because my right knee had ALWAYS been a real BUGGER. 😵I think maybe just having two knees that now WORKED without horrific pain was such a GIFT that I was GRATEFUL, GRATEFUL, GRATEFUL!🙌😊😁🙌

    I was NOT prepared for the two steps ahead one step back of recovery. I kept a journal and poured my thoughts and concerns and progress into it. Reading previous entries would bolster my courage as I realized that I WAS making progress.

    Pain is felt differently by everyone. Maybe you need some more rest. Drinking lots of water flushes out toxins from anesthesia and pain meds. That helps put things in a more positive place.

    Be patient with yourself. We go through A LOT with these surgeries! Come here often. It helps knowing that so many share your surgical experience with TKR. Although we all are different, we can share our stories. It helps.

    Sending prayers tonight for strength, patience, and healing!💟

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