One week post op TKR

Posted , 8 users are following.

Hi Everyone, my name is Patrick I'm 51 and live in the UK and had a tkr on my left knee a week a go tomorrow.

Before my op I gained some brilliant tips from this site so thought it's now time to say hello and join the TKR family!

1 like, 15 replies

15 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Patrick

    How are feeling? I'm 48 and 5 months post TKR also from the UK , I could not have got through the past through months without this site, it's good to share any problems

  • Posted

    Well good luck. I'm on my second and agree with you. Some great tips (and some not so good!) and lots of nice empathy. My first tip would be look out for the equivalent of post natal depression in the first three weeks or so. Things seem to get worse and you find it hard to believe it will get better - I didn't and it was my second TKR! Now at 6 weeks there is still a way to go but generally I am happier, walking without crutches and can see the improvements gradually coming along. My view is also don't over do it in the first three weeks. If it hurts - stop! Yes, push yourself with the exercises to the point of pain maybe but then stop!

  • Posted

    Hi Patrick,

    im 61 now but had bilateral tkr’s 2.5yrs ago. I’m in Australia but originally Wales. ( Gods own country)The site has been a godsend and you will find a lot of people like me that are still trying to help and advise years later.  It’s good to know you’re not alone.  To know that the pains and discomforts are all pretty normal.

    you sound pretty chipper for a week along lol.  I hope all is going well with you so far and that you’re not in too much pain.  Keep reading the forum and let us know how you’re going.   Best wishes.



  • Posted

    Thanks very much for your comments.

    I am feeling OK generally, not really sleeping and and stiff feeling are my main things right now.

    I'm icing, elevating and doing my exercises like a good patient!

    Having my staples out on Friday.

    I got send home from hospital with morphine Sulphate, codeine phosphate, paracetamol, senna and injections in my stomach for 2 weeks is this normal medication? Seems to work well apart from the not sleeping.

    • Posted

      I was sent home with morphine and paracetamol , it was great for the pain BUT the side affect s were not so good I had constipation, loss of appetite which made me loose 2 stone and depression . The injections were for 2 weeks which I was pleased when they finished because I could say goodbye to the dreadful surgical stockings haha
    • Posted

      I’m 2 weeks yesterday post op and I totally sympathise with the not sleeping! It is now getting a bit easier thankfully. I tried lots of things, even a mild sleeping pill as well as the pain killers which normally make me sleepy but didn’t seem to at this point! Leg elevated in bed, propped up at head and seemed to help, soft cushion between knees helps too. . It’s easy to make it even harder to get off as you feel anxious about it because you need your rest and are weary! In the end I decided not to get frantic about it and just make sure I made myself as comfortable as possible. 

      I have a limited time nap in the afternoon. Take meds 45 mins before I want to go to bed.  A couple of times I ended up getting up at 2amish to sit in my big recliner chair which was more comfy than bed, have some hot milk, get the ice on  ( I have a cryo-cuff from Amazon which has been the best thIng ever it makes icing including during night so much easier) kept warm, read or listen to some quiet music,  and would get dozy. Then I went back to bed when actually I should have stayed put - think half the problem is that it’s harf to get into a comfy sleeping position.  But as I say it’s slowly getting easier to sleep. 

      You have to remember too we are out of our normal routine and tho we may be weary from pain and the sheer trauma of op we are not doing much to make us tired in the way normal life does, so the fact our sleep is disrupted is not that surprising! 

      Your meds sound pretty standard to me, I had ocynorm in hospital and got them to send me home with a limited supply as I can’t take tramadol and I was pretty sure I’d need the oxynorm for a bit longer especially at night - but I cut it right back to only 1-2 a day mostly at night. 

      It’s hard to know whether where you are is ‘normal’ or ok isn’t it partly because we all start from different points, and recover differently so given we are both at early stage I hope this has been helpful. 

    • Posted

      I would never take an opiate without having gentle  preventative laxatives alongside it it’s really poor  that  they don’t routinely prescribe them for people I think it can prevent real misery! 
    • Posted


      Here, in Australia, they do prescribe a laxative after a tkr.  It was awful, I was in hospital after having bilateral tkr’s and have to “ run” to the toilet. 6 times a day.  I had to tell 5em to not prescribe to me any.more.  It was so embarrassing.  It was a 4 bed ward with 2 men sleeping opposite me and a woman next to me,   The poor guy w’s bed was next to the toilet had it pretty bad.  I know the importance of being able to go do but those pills are leathal.  

      Best wishes

      Sue xx

  • Posted

    Hi xpatx you'll get loads of info off this site. You're in very early days and it dies get better. Yeah there's horror stories but they're in the minority. I'm 12 weeks post op on my left knee. Thought my life was over at the beginning but talking to this forum was literally a life saver. Well on the way to recovery but remember to exercise rest ice and elevate. After a few weeks it does get to be a chore but no pain no gain. If you want to achieve pain-free mobility then it must be done. I do them 3 times daily and on my stationary bike 1k a day determined I will reach that goal before my holidays to Tuscany in 8 weeks. I was off strong medication by the 6th week 2 paracetamol at night that was it and occasionally a sleep g tablet but never really worked. I also have a left foot toe fusion and spine fusion C3/4-4/5-5/6-6/7 so as my family call me the bionic woman. Do what the Dr and PT tells you visit this forum and you'll be fine. Good luck on your journey fellow tkr

  • Posted

    It does amaze me how different things are hospital to hospital, PT to PT, Country to Country. Unfortunately due to some other tablets I take my only pain killer was Co-Codamol  and frankly that wasn't enough. It's great that you can do the exercises though and being relatively young you should make a good recovery. Someone else mentioned the side effects and constipation and without going into the gory details try and keep on top of that as it can be a nightmare!

    • Posted

      Agree. And as I said earlier it beggars belief they don’t give people something to prevent the constipation too or at least tell them to get from GP or even buy over counter! 
  • Posted

    I don't think I could get any better advise that people that have been there and on my first post you've all been so helpful.

    I slept for 3 hours last night and pleased!

    My knee and calf feels stiff but keeping up with exercises.

    Hope you are all getting on well with your own recovery and thinking of you all 👍

  • Posted

    Re: opiates...  Typically, two are prescribed: 1. Hydrocodone (Vicodin, Norco); and 2. Oxycodone (Percocet).  Both are excellent pain relievers but you have to stick to the schedule to keep the med in your blood stream at a theraputic level.  This is the same with ALL pain meds.  You cannot take them when you have pain...they must be taken on schedule because of the half-life of the drug (half leaves your system in "x" hours).  So the schedule overlaps the half-lives to keep you at a good blood level all the time.  Else, it's a roller coaster of pain.

    Note that both drugs can be prescribed as the plain medication itself or combined with acetaminophen (Tylenol).  This can be done generically or via the brand names above.  You will see this on the label as something like "5/325" which indicates 5 mg of the opioid and 325 mg of the Tylenol.

    The big difference between the two is that clinical studies in the NIH database show a statistically significant increase in constipation with the hydrocodone as opposed to the oxycodone.  If you are having severe constipation, consider switching to the oxycodone.  In either case, a stool softener (ex: Ducolax) is always recommended.  Plus hydrating a lot is very helpful.

    The reason for the difference is that the hydrocodone is based on the codeine molecule vs the thebaine molecule for the oxycodone.  Anything codeine-based will be constipating so if you are on another pain killer that has codeine in it, you will probably be susceptible to more constipation.

    The more heavy-duty painkillers include morphine and Dilaudid (hydromorphone).  Hope you don't need those.  When you titrate off the opioids, the transition drug of choice seems to be Tramadol (Ultram), a very mild opioid that can help get you off the big stuff and onto plain OTC ibuprofen.  This all usually takes place in the first 90 days as you step down the meds gradually.  All completely normal.

    So...  Stool softener and lots of water!!!

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