When can I use my bathtub? And how can I get out?!

Posted , 10 users are following.

Hi all, On my 9th week post btkr. I was told or read somewhere, that I cannot take a bath or swim in a pool until the 3 month mark because of the possibility of bacteria still being able to permeate my incisions. Is this what you were all told? Before my surgery, I used to soak my weary bones in my jetted soaker tub. But now I'm still using a shower chair. I can't wait to be able to get back in my wonderful tub again. ALSO, how will I be able to get out?? A big concern for me. Is there another way besides getting on my numb knees? All ideas appreciated~

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14 Replies

  • Posted

    You are allowed to bath or get in the pool once your incision is closed usually 4 weeks,  I had an infection and had to wait until healed. I don’t know how you could get in the tub without assistance.
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  • Posted

    Hi Carri

    I was told at my six week assessment that I could try walking in the public pool. So on that basis I would think a bath is fine.

    Getting out is another matter altogether!!!

    With one replacement and the other very swollen and sore (now had that done as well 2 weeks ago) I struggled (I'm 62and was fairly fit pre knees!) I had to empty the water out whilst sat in the tub. Sit up and turn onto one side, jam my feet into the bottom end of the bathtub then raise myself up onto my hands and feet (picture a crab) then walk my feet towards my hands until nearly upright.

    Sounds funny but worked for me and I don't have much upper body strength.

    Alternatively you can buy inflatable cushions that you sit on and as you end your bath you inflate the cushion bringing you up with it until you are sat upright. Also putting a little footstool in the water might work although not as relaxing as just laying back!

    Good luck

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  • Posted

    Hi

    I'm 10 weeks post TKR, I started having a bath once the incision had healed and there were no scabs left I think around the 4 week Mark, it was lovely though I only have a bend of 45 degrees at the moment due for MUA next week so getting in and out is tricky , sounds daft but I get good leg in then use a scarf to lift bad leg in then slide down into bath. Getting out I have to use upper body to lift. The fun we go through . X

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  • Posted

    Once the incision scar has healed & no scabs you can bathe.

    Getting in us easy, getting put can be a right 'mare! I won't go into details but I tried it in 2016 after 1st TKR. Most difficult & not a pretty sight!! Think beached whale! No don't try to picture it, too horrible. I still shower!

    Tricia's idea is good, that's what I do if I have to get onto the floor for any reason. 

    Marilyn 

    XX

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    • Posted

      Marilyn LOL I have got up like this for two years. My own personal yoga position! And I've never done yoga in my life, perhaps I will start trying. At least when the pain has stopped😊

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  • Posted

    I have heard anywhere from two to six weeks...never three months.  Check back with doc or PT.  In and out?  Get a handle or two as in the pix...

     

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  • Posted

    I also do the crab position to get out. My whirlpool tub sides are too wide for a portable handle, and I have had a suction cup handle come loose so don't use them anymore. I put a non slip mat on the bottom of the tub and a towel over the tub sides because it's less slippery when I would lay across it to support me while I straightened my legs. Yes, it's easier to just use the shower chair, but soaking in a tub with Epsom salts is so relaxing and a good time to stretch in the water. 

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  • Posted

    You can get out by leaning on your good knee and pushing up on bad one. Of course it should be strong enough. I use a folded up small bath towel to lean on and a washcloth to put my good foot on. Before I was able to do this I practiced on a mat on floor at Pt place. My therapist made a fake tub like situation. I got down like I’d be in tub and practiced getting up. It worked. Be careful and I hope you’re able to bathe soon, I love my baths
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  • Posted

    I was bathing before my incision sealed up, but I was extremely careful to keep my leg out of the water. I couldn't bear to be without a relaxing bath, but it is advised to wait until six weeks post op and until incision completely healed. When you can put your whole leg in the bath its even better of course! But elevating the leg while bathing is good in the early days anyway because you don't want it getting too hot. I have very hot baths and so it did swell up a little bit after but it all felt very good!

    I really love a bath. Used epsom salts in it.

    Did practice getting in and out when no water in the bath first!

    I have very good upper body strength so held on to the sides to lever myself out.

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  • Posted

    So there is NO ONE who has gotten on their knees? I am wondering if I get a thick squishy kneeling pad (like a gardeners kneeling pad) and bring that into the bath when I want to get out. I could put my knees on it quickly just enough to get into that crab position. Hmmm?? I have gotten on my knees once to see how it feels. It doesn't hurt but it feels weird because of the numbness and psychologically, it kind of freaks me out.

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    • Posted

      Ahhhhh...kneeling...a whole other topic....

      First, kneeling on a metal knee can't hurt it...IT'S METAL!!!  Next...  What you're feeling is nerve pain.  Early on, this feels really strange.  It lessens as time goes on...a long time, as nerves are the last thing to heal.  Don't expect all of that sensation to go away.  Some old timers say it does...I personally don't believe them.  I think there will always be some residual nerve discomfort.  We all have to learn to live with it.

      For me, any indoor work on my knees requires the use of a 3"-4" foam pad...sometimes in a pillowcase.  Simple.  Outside (gardening, etc.), I use a set of padded tactical (SWAT) knee pads.  Poifect.  Tip:  NEVER kneel directly on cement, tile, hardwood floors, etc.  The harder the surface, the more nerve sensation there is.  In the tub?  How about a HUGE 4" thick car washing sponge?  Once you get up, just ring it out and let it dry.

      Remember the suction grip handles!!!!!  Stay safe.

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  • Posted

    As long as the incision is completely healed with all the scabs gone and no drainage nothing can permeate. Showers are better than a tub as sitting in still water isn't good. I always. Used vit E oil massaged into the incision twice a day as soon as the incision was healed as mentioned. Never have I ever heard the 3 month thing and I've had 11 surgeries and 5bcomplete rehab on the leg/knee. I did ha e 2 serious staph infections but the were epitaph infections caused by a staph on the body. Our nephew is an infectious disease Dr and his professional opinion is that everyone carries enough staph on their body to kill them but 99.9% of people have enough of an immune system to handle the problem. I'm one of the .001% that doesn't so I was in trouble ....twice.

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  • Posted

    Ok, I did it! I took my first bath today since 9 weeks. I fired up the jets and it was so nice to have my routine back again. I WAS able to get out too! Did not have to get on knees but lifted myself up with my arms on the high sides of my deep tub. It worked. I practiced before I ran the water. After using only the shower for so long, man, I need to clean my tub!! I remember cleaning the jets with bleach before my surgery so the jets wouldn't have any bacteria lurking around. But then remembered after I was already in the tub, that I hadn't rinsed the jets out with a fresh tub of water. So I was probably sitting in some bleach water!

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