Post TKR Swelling - How Long Does it Last?

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The swelling is, of course, the major culprit inhibiting ROM. I am just about 6 weeks post op, and like many other posts I have read here, I am wondering how long it takes to get to the point I am glad I had TKR. It just seems that the swelling will never go away. My next visit with my surgeon is 2 weeks, and I am terrified that he will want to drain it. I ice my knee, go to PT 3x a week, do my exercises, and sometimes worry that I am pushing too hard, although they tell me at PT that I can't push too hard.

How have others dealt with the swelling? Are there other things I might try to reduce it?

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  • Posted

    No need to be concerned about draining in most cases. The soft tissue swelling is the culprit and just like fingerprints, we are all very different. Watch your salt intake to hold down fluid retention and keep up with the excercise and other prescribed routines. 6 weeks is one of the very early benchmarks but can't be used as point of concern. I'm 3 months out on this surgery and still have swelling when I use the leg to excess. I won't start getting aggravated until 6 months but as many times as I've been through it, a year isnt going to have me worried. Just keep doing. Look for any abnormalities like severe heat or drainage and call your surgeon. This proceedure is a life changer more ways than just the base operation. Be patient as difficult as it may be. You will feel better as the nerves finish their repair. Weather changes and changes in activity will appear to be setbacks but are normal. Stay with this group. They are more than just helpful....they become a world wide family with one difference, you get to pick them
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    • Posted

      Thank you ofg. I must say I am thankful to have found this forum. It is difficult to be patient, as I want it to be better right now. lol

      I want the swelling to go away so I can move easier. I didn't realize how difficult all this would be prior to surgery.

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    • Posted

      Not sure if this forum is still going but it's helped me! One thing I was not aware of was the muscle pain for your muscles readjusting to your new knee. I have found that massage both with a massage therapist and self massage can alleviate some of the pain, as can Arnica gel

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  • Posted

    My MD's assistant told me to keep wearing the compression stockings, especially during PT to help reduce swelling. If you put them on before you get out of bed in the morning before the swelling gets real bad that helps too.

    An amusing note, when I asked about initial recovery my surgeon said 3 days on a walker, 3 weeks on a cane and at 8 weeks you start liking him again 😀

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    • Posted

      I don't have any compression stockings. Maybe I need to check into them. I did use kinesiology tape in rehab before I came home. I think possibly I will use it again until I check out the stockings.

      Thank you for the suggestion.

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  • Posted

    you are doing all you can swelling takes time to reduce ice after your excersises and rest as much as you can by the sounds of things your doing everything right well done and dont worry
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    • Posted

      yes debz it gets full marks for the most difficult  surgery  to get over !!! its the gift that keeps on giving lol, hang in there . why not get anti inflamatorys to help with swelling for a few weeks i found them very usefull .i take arcoxia 90 and also take tablet for my tummy because anti inflamatorys are hard on the tummy x
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    • Posted

      It seems arcoxia is not approved in the US. Prior to surgery I had been taking celebrex, which I think is in the same class. Immediately after surgery I was taking xarelto, once that ended I was told to take a daily aspirin, which is another nsaid. Guess I need to have a discussion with my surgeon about it.

      Yes, the gift that keeps on giving lol

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  • Posted

    Hi, my physio said I was doing too much, I'm nearly 7 wks, and I wasn't allowing the joint time to recover. My knee is still swollen and hot so I am back on ice every 2 hrs for 20 min max. She also said if ice stayed on longer it was counterproductive and increased blood flow to area increasing swelling. I didn't know this so am stricter with the time. Good luck
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    • Posted

      Debz I saw my consultant yesterday and he said swelling was as he would expect at nearly 8 weeks. He was very pleased at my "bend" as he said it was practically the limit of the joint. He thought it would be Xmas before the heat in the knee got better and until then the scar would be a bother. Disturbingly he said it may always be a little problem!
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    • Posted

      It's frustrating to deal with the swelling! Glad to hear your swelling is as expected! Always good to hear one is progressing as expected.

      I am curious what your bend angle is. My PT got mine to 98 pushing it and I let out a scream!

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