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I am looking at a TKR next month Feb. and I was looking for any tips or secrets that you may have learned to make recovery smooth. I am 48.

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  • Posted

    Do your rehab exercises religiously.  I am 21 weeks post op and totally back to normal.  Biking and running and doing 320 lbs. on quad machine.
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  • Posted

    Hi Sherry, I'm 57 and I had my op on 22 November.  If possible make sure you do some leg strengthening exercises and also some arm strengthening exercises as you will use your arms a lot more in the early recovery days to move yourself around.  Plenty of meals ready in the freezer unless you have someone to cook for you!  Don't expect too much too soon. Do your exercises religiously and be prepared for some hard work - it takes a while but it will be worth it.

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  • Posted

    Hi Sherry

    I agree with what's been said already, prepare yourself & your leg for the operation by keeping it as strong as you can before the op & deffo arms too. Using the crutches can be hard on them!

    Also if you see a chiropractor, do so a couple of times a week before the op to make sure everything is aligned properly for the big day. It also helps your immune system when your spine & everything is aligned.

    Keep a sense of humour, you'll need it after!

    Don't measure yourself against anyone else. You are you not them, we all recover differently!

    Keep hydrated, do your exercises, rest, ice & heat when needed.

    Don't be afraid to ask for help from your nearest & dearest.

    Most important after your op, anything you want to know or just to vent, we are all here for you, any time day or night someone will also be up & will reply.

    Good luck, we will all have our fingers crossed for you.

    Get back when you've 'been done'.

    All the best



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  • Posted


    Almost 5 weeks post TKR left knee.


    - Find an orthopedic excercise program for strengthening your quad muscles before. This is going to make a crucial difference. I did not do it this time, but will start asap before my right knee.

    - Make sure you have enough standard size pillows. And Ice packs. At least 4. So that you always have 2 ready. Icing and elevation is going to become your salvation. There is icing machines too.

    - Get pj bottoms that are very soft, loose-fitting, elastic band and cropped (calf length).

    - Take the proper shoes for discharge. I took my Nike shoes but didn't realize that my foot and ankle would be too swollen to fit the shoe.

    - Prepare an area next to your bed which have enough space for pain meds, water etc. especially the first few weeks.

    - keep a Zinc ointment close by for areas like your elbow on the surgery side. Initially you will use this elbow and pressure point for moving and pushing yourself up and my elbow became very chaffed. I wear a sock with the toe section cut off over the elbow and keep applying Zinc.

    - Stock up on Prune juice, prunes and Dulcolax, Senna and stool softeners. Right from the start constipation sets in and it is severe. (The Dulcolax and Senna is approved to take with Warfarin (blood thinner). Be careful to make sure that the laxative you choose does not have interaction with your blood thinner. For instance if you take Warfarin and magnesium citrate it can cause an overdose.

    - AT HOME

    - Crucial for recovery. Take your pain medications as prescribed. Do NOT wait to feel pain. Do not try to "tough" it out. Pain and swelling slows or stops healing. Set your alarm clock for nightly medications. Once your pain gets to a high level it is very hard to get it down.

    -Elevate 2-3 times a day. I do 45 min at a time. If you control the swelling and the stiffness you will decrease your pain significantly.

    - Physical therapy and home exercises- the only way to become functional. Make sure to take pain meds an hour before and keep ice packs ready for immediately afterwards.

    - All for now. Please ask me anything. I had the joint class before surgery but these were things I wish was discussed too.

    - best of luck. This forum has been my absolute go to since the surgery.


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  • Posted

    PS. Visit your dentist to get a proper cleaning and to make sure you do not have any infection in your mouth.
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  • Posted

    Hi Sherry,

    ?For some 6 weeks prior to surgery for a (Right) partial knee replacement in Nov 2015, I had a massage therapist work on my right leg, above and below the knee aimed at strengthening the knee so it was in as best possible condition for the surgeon to then go and butcher.

    ?Post op, once the dressing was removed and I was checked out for infection (there wasn't any), I got the same massage therapist to return to working on the leg -particularly the scar line. The aim here was to try to prevent scar tissue forming PLUS again working on the leg muscles, tissue to support all the exercises (PT) I was doing.

    ?I did all my exercises at home over, above and beyond all this therapy.

    I was driving my car again at 8 weeks and back at work driving a bus at 11 weeks.

    no problems at any point.

    Wouldn't do it any other way.

    ?I must add though, my surgeon wouldn't release me from hospital until I had achieved at least a 90 degree bend in my operated knee and got my leg close to 0 degrees flexion. I managed to achieve this in 3 days of very hard and painful work.

    Hope this helps.


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  • Posted

    Sherry I agree with everything that has already been said...except one thing. Recovery is measured in months NOT weeks! This is like no other surgery and will challenge you in every way. Be realistic about your progress and be patient. Take joy in the small advances and prayerful in the setbacks..they will happen. Almost everyone "hits the wall" emotionally around 3 weeks. The depression is real but don't let it overtake you. Be prepared emotionally and physically before surgery and stay close to this forum. We are all cheerleaders for fellow TKRs...I'm 18 weeks post TKR and just returned from 5 day cruise without problems. Yes, I still have issues and some sleepless nights but it's getting easier every day.

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  • Posted

    Smooth?  Are you sure you're not delusional from the opioids already?  Noooooo.  This is definitely NOT smooth...

    Very, very, very, very few people beat this in 4-6 weeks.  Normally, one year.  Get used to the idea and prepare yourself.  I've had a hip replacement and spine fusion.  The knee is like nothing else.  You CANNOT push through it...slow and easy recovery else the knee swells and you have to back off.  It takes time, patience and a lot of hard work.

    I thought I was done at 8 months.  WRONG!  Very humbling...

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  • Posted

    I also have a silky bag that goes everywhere with me indoors, up to bed anywhere I am sitting. It has inside, my phone, tissues my meds, my tablet & my kindle as well as the chargers for the above.

    Be prepared for amusing yourself!



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  • Posted

    Sherry, my take.  I had mine done November 1st.  I am 59.  I was discouraged in the beginning because my leg was so tight, little flexibility, lots of pain, sleepless nights walking the floor (only thing that really helped).  BUT, each week, each month, you look back and can see how far you have come!  Don't be discouraged!  DO NOT avoid pain meds (harder to stop pain than to try to prevent it from getting too bad).  DO all of the exercises religiously!  SO IMPORTANT!!  I just got back to work after 2 1/2 months.  Took my time to make sure that I would be comfortable, because once you're back, you're back.  I just did my first hike with my hiking club, back to yoga.  Doing VERY well now!  Best wishes!!

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