Trouble through the night

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Does anyone else struggle sleeping through the night. 6 weeks in and doing well with walking and doing exercises. I am taking painkillers every 8 hours but through the night I am waking around 2am with the tightness. I use the icepack and maybe do a few exercises and normally awake every couple of hours. does anyone else have this and is there a solution.....

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  • Posted

    Hi Alice,

    Seems like you're way of dealing with this is fine. The tightness is normal and doing a few simple exercises and walking about is the best way to relieve the tightness. I was warned beforehand "you won't sleep nights". The first two weeks of nights were horrible, i just took more painkillers and even half a sleeping pill but even then only managed about two hours at a time.

    This will pass, the process is a long one 12-18 months to he completely relaxed in the knee area. . I'm sure you will soon find the nights easier. Are you able to sleep during the day to at least make up for lost sleep at night? If you haven't yet had your post-op check-up,mention it to your surgeon when you do go. Stay strong and all the best.

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    • Posted

      Hi Jane, thanks for your reply. I was never told beforehand about the sleepless nights and the tightness afterwards, although I had been warned it wasnt a quick fix and would be very painful. I have been for my 6 week review and have been told all is fine, keep doing the exercises and dont be frightened of taking the painkillers as its early days. Now I understand it is part of the healing process I will deal with it, I thought it was just me maybe doing something wrong. I am in bed quite early( as more comfortable) and I dont get up very early as do exercises before I get up. Once I start walking it is fine really and just the niggles that arent going away anytime soon....

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  • Posted

    had both knees replaced 7 months ago and still struggle with sleeping. days are OK. nights are a total knightmare.

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  • Posted

    hi

    7 weeks post tkr and still not sleeping manage yo drop off for s couple of hours then my knee goes stiff and then awake for hours

    cant wait for the end and get back to normal walking is not too bad but if i go to far my knee goes solid and difficult to bend is this normal

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  • Posted

    Im 8 months post op tkr left knee. I still wake at night when i move as my knee hurts. Im also having a knife sharp pain below my knee when i walk. It makes me limp. Its more painful than before i had the op.

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  • Posted

    Hi Alice....i am 5 weeks post TKR. This is actually a revision. I had my TKR last November but due to knee cap problems and leg not being straight had to have it done again. What has surprised me is that this TKR is not as painful and im now only taking one pain med at night and sometimes i can skip it. I use a small pillow between my knees for sleeping. I find it supports my knee. i also take 2 benedryl before bed. I tend to wake after 4 hours and if i cant get back to sleep i keep my ipad beside my bed. i watch NETFLIX or you tube with my ear phones. i usually fall asleep and listening takes my mind of the pain. Sometimes i listen to spa music. My husband moved out of the bedroom as my moaning and groaning while sleeping woke him up. I have also taken gravol to make me sleep. GOOD LUCK it does get better.

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  • Posted

    Im 8 weeks post op and feeling exactly the same. Ive given up with painkillers & sleeping tablets because they made little difference and they all seem to come with side effects which just make you feel more of a mess.

    You might as well have a glass of wine at night ( or whatever your tipple) to help you relax.

    I belong to a sports club and so swim 4 times a week which is good for the mind and the knee. Then I do my exercises in the warm jacuzzi which is bliss.

    I take 3 icepacks to bed in a small coolpack; they are the only thing that helps.

    My surgeon says should get better 4 months post op. Try to measure your progress in months rather than weeks.

    Take a flask of camomile tea to bed and some reading material and surround yourselves with pillows to support your leg. There is no magic solution but be assured, what you are feeling is perfectly normal.

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  • Posted

    MARTHA....During my first TKR my surgeon had problems stabilizing my knee cap but within 4 weeks it was back on the side of my knee. My knee was very swollen, I was never able to do leg raises and in order to walk i had to kick my leg out to the side. my original surgeon told me that he hadnt encountered my problem in years. He prescribed a leg brace for 12 weeks and when nothing changed he said more surgery. At this point i said i wanted to go to an expert in my problem. I went to an orthopedic hospital and this surgeon was an expert in revision and he could see the problems with xrays. He was amazed that i could walk as well as i did but put me on a priority list and within 4 weeks i had my surgery...taking out the old knee as the leg was crooked and loosening and tightening muscles and ligaments to support the knee cap. i was in hospital for 6 days and he has given me 4 exercises to do. i can already walk with just a small limp and raise my leg. Progression is much slower with a revision. Since i know all the exercises from my recent physio my surgeon is going to let me do it on my own at my gym. Usually PT will push you and the surgeon want me to move slowly and not tear recent surgery. My surgery was 31/2 hours.

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  • Posted

    thank you for replying back..... very interesting info....

    ML

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    • Posted

      Oh and I like the way your surgeon thinks on the no pain physical therapy. My first surgeon wanted pain, pain pain..... and the PT made sure it was painful. I think something happened during that torture...

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    • Posted

      Martha...My second surgery revision is different. His biggest concern was not to tear the internal stitches. He said its a slower process...two years. I am sure he would not be saying this if it was my first one. He is not advocating no pain. He doesnt want to have to do surgery for further repairs.

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  • Posted

    For me (70 yr old female), I just had my 2nd TKR (left) Oct 2nd and sleeping is 1 of the hardest things to do! I am 4 1/2 wks out and can now sleep 6 hrs at a time. last TKR 3 yrs ago was worse. With the pain, burning, stabbing ect ist is just hard to stay asleep for very long. It will get better, take time. If the pain is burning and stabbing, elec shock like pain (nerve damage), you might ask Dr about taking "Gabapenton" a nephropathy pain medication which can help sometimes. hang in there

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  • Posted

    My second TKR was also the beginning of October. I'm struggling sleeping for more than two hours at a time. I just don't seem to be able to get comfortable. The nagging pain is constant and no painkillers seem to help.

    I'm getting there slowly but I find the exercises so difficult, My knee is swollen, tight and painful.I have a 90 degree bend but I can't straighten my leg. I ice regularly.

    I can walk with a walker outside but tend to walk on my own in the house be it with a bad limp.

    Where do I go from here I keep asking myself.I'm not going to push the exercises and I will wait until the pain eases and the swelling goes down before I start them again.

    This journey is so long and painful but I know I will get there in the end.

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    • Posted

      good questions, I have them too. I'll be doing great then go to PT where they basically kill me, then come home and have to rest and either ice knee or heating pad on lower back. The thinly padded board at PT is killer to lower back, 7 minutes on bike doing 3/4 rotations is not so bad while doing but that night and next day are killers. I feel like rusty the tinman when I get out of bed and have to reintroduce myself to the program. I'm assuming this is all part of the healing process. I totally understand the breaking of scar tissue so why did they only do that once on first day at PT? Common sense tells me its time consuming so need to massage kneecap scar at home. Somedays are ok and some aren't.

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