The crazy things we try to help with TKR rehab.

Posted , 7 users are following.

I've tried a few strange things to help aid or speed up my knee replacement recovery. I initially had trouble with pain and after the Dr switched me to several pain meds finally tried (successfully) with some Asian herb. Apparently, it's so out of "left field" I'm not allowed to mention it here. 

My Physical therapists wanted to tape me up with some black tape that made me look like an octopus. Once was enough with that. After seeing some of the therapy exercises I went out and bought some Biofreeze, a pulling strap and a big ball. I looked at leasing a CPM machine and a recumbent bike but ended up with neither. I already have a "unicycle type" and a road bicycle.

I've never been a big vitamin guy but I bought a bunch of vitamins that promise to "speed up recovery". I don't know if they work or not but I take about 10 in the morning and 10 at night now just in case.

My freezer is loaded with about eight new ice packs which I rotate depending on my mood.

Probably the weirdest thing I did was to buy some "soda ash crystals" to strap on my swollen knee before bed. The stuff looks and is similar to salt. I think they use it as a pool chemical. I came across that beauty when I saw an Australian PT video that promised it would help with the swelling in three days. He even showed how to wrap it around the knee. I tried that for five days but as expected........

What "different things" have you done or tried since your surgery? 

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  • Posted

    Ozziegee - this all sounds very interesting - and unusual!  Just research anything online and make sure there are no unwanted side effects.  There can be from some herbs.  But I wish I could help!  You sound really anxious and desperate!  I can't remember when you TKR was - how long is it now, and how are you getting on with pain, sleep, the bend and straightening, and how are you feeling in yourself?

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  • Posted

    This is crucial to your meds...

    https://patient.info/forums/discuss/staying-ahead-of-the-pain-563395

    You can avoid a lot of the pain by staying ahead of it.

    Also, a big part of being in pain is because you're always thinking about it.  The mind can only hold one thought at a time..."multitasking" is the illusion that the mind can hold more than one thought concurrently while all it is is a rapid in/out swap.  So if you have a thought in your head, make it a good one.  Read an engrossing book, kill zombies on X-Box, etc.  Get your mind off the pain.  Just lying there in agony will keep you lying there in agony.  Get up and do something.

    PS: You can't "speed up" anything.  The knee will heal when it heals.  Push it, and it swells, setting you back.  You've heard how it's slow and steady...I can tell you at 14 months, it is exactly that.  Anything else is an illusion.  

    Here's an exercise program to get your strength back...

    https://patient.info/forums/discuss/post-tkr-exercising-565527

    Good luck...

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  • Posted

    Bathing in epsom salts is heaven! 😊🎧 listening to relaxation music and deep

    Breathing...full lung breath is great. Prayer is great. Mindfuless. But nothing to speed up. Just go with the time as it is! But not exactly crazy...just anything that could help!

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  • Posted

    I love this thread. Something to chuckle at.

    I'm going to acupuncture, chiropractic and massage. The massage therapist uses cupping and it seems to help. I have had the PT's tape the knee and that felt good.

    I also have a freezer full of ice packs pice cuff in the closet. Exercise ball, stretched no straps, goinometer, Biofreeze, China Gel. I use a wash rag to cover my knee at night but it has to be just the right one. Some just aren't soft enough. Two walkers one that is state of the art that my husband made me buy and one that's lightweight that's borrowed. I take vitamin D and that's about it for vitamins. I feel like my whole life revolves around my knee. If I touch it or rub it I'm peppered with questions of whoever is here. Does it hurt why are you rubbing it.

    I can't take ibprophen because it gives me heart palpitations. I only use Tylenol and down to one Tramadol. I'm sure if something came along promising to speed up the process I'd go for it.

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  • Posted

    Your comments are just what I need Ozziegee. Really funny. Bought lots and in the early days and we made sure everything was so clean. Anti-bacterial gel, new towels all the time and cling film to stop wound/ stitches getting wet. The first morning home it took us an hour to get up,showered and downstairs. I still write meds in a book and coming downstairs/ upstairs is like packing for a holiday ( very steep and lots so during first week didn't attempt alone). Thanks for the chuckle. 

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    • Posted

      Oh I forgot about the very early days. Everyone that touch me had to wash their hands. My husband would have made them suit up for surgery if he'd had his way. I couldn't go to the bathroom or move from one room to another without a minder🤣

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    • Posted

      Oh I love your comments!!!!  That's what I did too.  Sheets that had been washed two days previously had to be fresh for the day I went home, and all clothing was washed in dettox laundry wash for before I went in (after all, we were given HIbiscrub to shower with for two showers before the op, so to me it made sense to make sure all clothing was as clean too!) and the same with towels as the sheets.  And as for the stuff I took into hospital - yes, antibac gel, antibac wipes, wipes for EVERY bit of my body, and yes, did the clingfilm bit despite having a waterproof dressing - my attempts with clingfilm simply trapped water around it - how did you get on with it?  It took us ages for me to shower etc. and husband to get the compression stockings on LOL!  The whole time for us was 'me and my knee' LOL!  Even going round the corner to family after a week or so was 'me and my knee' with me going for the chair with the legrest, and NO-ONE could come anywhere near me, especially the children LOL!  That's not to forget the cardboard box that we cut out leg holes in for me at home, to stop the cats jumping on the knee LOL!  Oh well, will soon be doing it again LOL!

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    • Posted

      Speaking about cats, I was worried about my two who can be a bit clingy. Just the one episode where on day two at home, the wall broke my fall after I tripped on one. No harm done.
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    • Posted

      Oh, Ozziegee (incidentally, one of our cats is called Ozzie LOL!) that has worried me so much and even though my op was 1st March, I STILL worry because they wind themselves round my feet!  Or will be walking along in front of me going from side to side, trying to trip me up!  I did gently push one out of the way as she rolled over right in front of me, with a crutch one day LOL!  We do have to be so careful!  But the cardboard box that fitted over the leg like a cradle worked well with the cats who often jump on laps:-)))  At least I could relax then!  Perhaps we could do with a little hooter on the crutches LOL!
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    • Posted

      Mine have that side to side trip up strategy as well. I usually lock them outside my bedroom at night but after surgery I left the door open. I was a bit worried about them, they can be a bit demanding, but they were good, seemed to know I was "sick". One thing, during the first two weeks they would sleep on or very near my operated knee. I would wake from the weight on my knee. I'd move them to the other side but within a short period of time they'd be right back. It was a big nuisance. After about two weeks it never happened again. They must have sensed some warmth or something in the operated knee. It was like a magnet for them.

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    • Posted

      I'm SURE you're right re the warmth Ozziegee.  That is so typical of cats, isn't it LOL!  Ours are shut out of the bedroom at night:-)))  I still freak a bit when one jumps on the knee now - and of course, it's the cat who's somewhat overweight so lands with a thump!

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    • Posted

      SHEETS!!!!  Forgot about that...  Before my op, got some inexpensive micro-satin sheets. Put them on before leaving for the hospital.  When I got home, I could easily slide in and out of bed without sticking like glue to cotton sheets.  Very helpful.
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    • Posted

      Oh I like that LOL!  Talking of that, we've got leather seats in the car, so they're easy to swivel round on but I wonder if anyone bought anything special for the car seat?  And that reminds me - I'm guessing (in the UK, anyway) it's easier getting in and out of the car when the LEFT leg is done (i.e. the outside leg).  Has anyone noticed any difference with getting in the car? 

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    • Posted

      Chris we used a plastic bag on the car seat to slide me around and then when in my husband pulled it from under me. We also put cushions on the floor for the first week or two for foot to rest on. I love all the comments about being so aware of germs. Good to know I wasn't the only one obsessed with avoiding an infection. 

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    • Posted

      That's a good idea for the car.  I'm thinking that coming home from the right knee being done, I MIGHT just try sitting in the back, with leg along the width of the seat.  It's over an hour's journey in the car, and I'm thinking it might be easier getting in and out like that too.  But I'll try it out before the op anyway:-))))

      Jan just asked me what the next thread was going to be and you've just reminded me about something I was reading about and forgot.  So here it goes...:-)))

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