Two steps forward, five steps back! I feel like there hasn't been enough progress!!

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Hi you all. I've read and read past threads and I try to stay positive. And patient. But I feel like I'm right back at the beginning. I had my TKR 5 weeks ago and I know that sounds too soon to complain. When I go to pt and they massage my leg, I feel better, like I am making progress, but when I leave, within 30 minutes, everything is back. Swollen! Stiffness! Limping! Pain! I need as much ice, pain medication, as in the beginning. Can't bend past 90 or straighten to 100. Still sleeping in a chair, for 45 minute increments....all night long. I am doing exercise at home but I worry all the time if my leg will ever be straight again? Will my limping ever go away? I'm not doing enough... I'm sorry I sound like a big baby. But I just had to say it all. I think these things as the minutes just keep ticking by...unchanging.

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  • Posted

    Been there, sorry to say, however you cannot hurry the recovery process. If you need pain relief, get it. The healing can take a LONG time so resign yourself to being patient and proactive. Read all you can about your surgery, it's recovery time, read novels or whatever you are interested in and watch Netflix, go for short walks, do your post op exercises religiously,, eat fresh wholesome food and drink lots of water, rest as much as you need and slowly resume your life, with limitations until you are fully recovered. Good fortune to you. x

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    • Posted

      Thank you, Lyn32416. I will try to keep your words in mind when I start to worry that my leg will never be straight again or that I will be limping forever. One day at a time, right? 🐌🕰???

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    • Posted

      Yep one freaking frustratingly awful slow boring day at a time. Then one day you feel fabulously betterer and betterer. I write my own take on language. I feel betterer and betterer every day. Tell yourself that this time is only temporary. But it needs to be experienced. You're on your way to recovery and make your medical team your friends. But if you get a full recovery it will be a joint effort with you doing the necessary part too. Get help when you need it. Don't accept anyone's medical opinion here. Your surgeon should see you soon. Discuss your concerns and ask for an x-ray if you feel anything is not ok.x

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  • Posted

    Don't sleep in the chair. Put 2 bed pillows under your bad knee/leg. Put ice bag on towel on your knee. You'll find it's much more comfortable. Believe me.

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  • Posted

    You're still inside the worst of it.  Need more time, PT and work at home.  I know it feels like you're going nowhere but you are... S  L  O  W  L  Y.   It's a real pain and we've all been through it.  I got stuck at -4 for weeks but finally broke through.  

    When you get down...read...

    https://patient.info/forums/discuss/tkr-and-ptsd-569521

    Hope it helps...

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  • Posted

    You are doing fine, I hate to say bit in one way, but reading this makes me remember exactly how it was for me at five weeks. Things will change but we are simply not in charge. Your body has its own agenda!
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    • Posted

      Hi Jenny. You were like this at 5 weeks? The other day I felt my first day of feeling like maybe I had "turned the corner", you know? Like it was finally getting easier.

      Um,...nope. The day after that, felt like back to square one again. I thought maybe I jinxed myself by being so optimistic. Oh brother. The mind games I play.🙄

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  • Posted

    I think we all reach a point when the misery of sleepless nights and perceived lack of progress catch up with us, but it will pass.  Just hang on to the thought that before the operation, you lived with pain that was only going to get worse.  The pain you are in now is only temporary and will get better and lead to a more active and pain free life.  Unfortunately it takes time and cannot be hurried.
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  • Posted

    You are not a being a baby! Recovering from TKR is tough!

    Ah you are so early in your recovery. You haven't really recovered from the operation yet! Don't forget you have had butchery practiced on your leg, it will take a long time to heal & some heal quicker than others!

    You just gotta roll with it (sorry Oasis again!). Give yourself a break, this really is early doors!

    Do your exercises as BEST you can, quality over quantity at this stage. Ice regularly & elevate! Find somewhere to lie where you can really get that knee above the level of your heart. Do it when you ice & the swelling will, even if temporarily, subside!

    When you do your exercises, it helps to warm the joint BEFORE the exercise & ICE after the exercise.

    Also massage the scar & the area around the joint yourself, you can use BioOil, or VitE cream or anything fairly bland that so t upset the skin around your incision scar. Give it a good going over, you can adjust the depth of massage as per the pain.

    Just remember you are an individual & your recovery will be different to anyone else's. Give it time & patience, you'll get there, sometimes you just have to BELIEVE'

    I know we all want this to be over & done with & get on with our lives, but there are no short cuts in TKR!

    BE MORE TORTOISE LESS HARE!!

    Good luck, keep us updated.

    Marilyn

    XX

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    • Posted

      Thank you Marilyn. Okay, I will do the scar massage with vitE. My therapist does it but I haven't done it at home. I will do it.

      I'm pretty faithful about ice. I will remember, MORE TORTOISE AND LESS HARE!!! 🐇🐢

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  • Posted

    What others have said is true.

    We all seem to go through a bad patch or three.

    ?My recovery is slower than most, 12 weeks today and not seeing any real progress, had to have a manipulation last week. We just have to look for the positives, however small. I have been able to turn pedals at long last - agony of course. I can stand up from the chair no hands (not sure how with such rubbish bend). These were my recent positives. At physio last week there were several amputees so it made me count my blessings.

    ?You are lucky to get your knee massaged - they don't offer anything like that at my pt.

    Hope you/we see some progress soon!  

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    • Posted

      Yep, with you on that Lesley. I am often exhausted, have no energy for even quite basic everyday activity yet.

      ?The practice nurse said some new knees can take a long time to settle. Ours are clearly in that category. I long to have that "turnaround" people talk about

       as I am sure do you.

      ?I am trying to keep positive and look at little progressions but yes, it takes it's toll and most evenings I have a few tears I have to admit.

      ?Tonight my knee has swollen up again, been icing and elevating but it takes no notice of this! Roll on a time when these knees do not rule us!

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    • Posted

      Youzeguyz say that at this point in time while your bodies are using all your energy to heal your knees.  As time goes on and you get past this stage, you will start feeling better and have more energy.  Feeling drained is completely normal but there are things you can do: eat healthy (more protein), hydrate, lose weight, finish your PT, when done start an exercise program like the one I posted, start generating endorphins to make you feel better, make yourself sleep better (another of my posts), let go of all expectations, delegate chores to others to conserve your energy, give yourself time to heal.  TREAT YOURSELF RIGHT!!!!!

      I'm 15 months post-op and it's sooooo much better on this side of the fence.  Give it time...

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    • Posted

      I got my manipulation at 12 weeks because my bend was stuck at 95 and my PT girl couldn't push it past that without excruciating pain (I used to scream into a pillow). MUA took all of 20 min. My doc said he heard crunching. Pain was not worse when he finished and within 2 weeks I was at 122 and released from PT. Good luck. It is necessary because of adhesions that stop your progress.

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    • Posted

      It varies according to the surgeon and where you live, what you hope to achieve etc. Since if you wish to have a sporty after knee life, or certain jobs, you would need more flexion than someone who is sedentary say.

      ​Mine was done as I only had 60 degrees of bend which is nowhere near the 90- 100 most say is the lowest to do everyday things. Even with physio, the bend just got no better, it had a sort of full stop and this is often considered an indicator I am told as it can be a sign of tight scarring adhesions, which if left, may only get worse.

      ​My surgeon said you can still improve with time once you reach the baseline

      It was scary to think about, but it was not so bad as I thought. If anyone needs an MUA, they should go for it, it is a big help in getting the bend. Mine still needs a lot of work. Mine has not been a straightforward recovery so far, it is a battle to keep this knee mobile, it swells and hurts a lot, that is just how it has affected me and I see that most people seem to progress more quickly.

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    • Posted

      Thank you Cynthia. Your story helps me.

      I have to try to be patient and always remind myself that we all have our own stories. You sound positive. I wish you a speedier recovery and lots of peace. I go to see my surgeon this week. I feel nervous but I'm taking one day at a time.

      (Actually, one sleepless hour at a time...)

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