recuperation

The Importance of Icing After A TKR

Hi everyone. The importance of icing after a tkr cannot be overemphasized, especially during recuperation. I have always found icing to be the best pain killer. Plus, it’s cheap and easy. It’s time consuming, though.

Icing in 10-minute increments is recommended immediately after exercise. I actually went for longer time periods. It can be tiresome having to ice every single day, sometimes multiple times during the day. It beats pain meds, though and is definitely worth the time.

I am 18 months post tkr and I still ice if I feel I need it. My knee just doesn’t hurt anymore. It’s still swollen, however. I was told by my surgeon that it probably always will be. That’s fine with me.

The manner in which my tkr knee area is supposedly permanently swollen differs from how it swelled up after exercise during my very early total knee replacement recuperation phase, though.

During the first weeks post-tkr- after exercise it was tender and pink. Now it’s not. It just looks like a fat knee with a large scar going down the center of it.

Hope this helps others going through the same thing. Ice, ice, ice. It’s important after a tkr.

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other health concerns.

This multiple award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader.

Healthy Eating Speeds the TKR Recuperation Process

Hi everyone. It’s common knowledge that eating healthy can help everyone. However, this is doubly important for us living with a total knee replacement (tkr) and through our COVID pandemic. Healthy eating speeds the tkr recuperation process.

So…here are some suggestions for quick, healthy eating that can be prepared at home:

Mix some fresh herbs with freshly squeezed juice for a low calorie dressing.

Squeeze an orange over your salad greens.

Spread some natural peanut or almond butter on an apple.

Enjoy a sandwich of tuna and mustard on wholegrain bread. Add lettuce & tomato, if desired.

Have some fresh fruit mixed with plain yogurt.

Spread some hummus on either pita bread, fresh veggies, or an English muffin.

For creamed soup, substitute pureed tofu for heavy cream.

All of these have worked well for me, and I am confident they’d work well for others. Enjoy!

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or a variety of other health concerns.

This award-winning tkr blog site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Stop Comparing Yourself To Other TKR Patients

Hi everyone. Even though it is a good idea to read about other total knee replacement patients and their experiences, please remember that we are all different. Stop comparing yourself to other tkr patients. Everyone recuperates at their own pace. And, everyone went into their total knee replacement surgery with a different background, different experiences. Some have experienced trauma, others aging issues,   and some have a combination of the two (like me).

My tkr is the result of a car accident which happened 45 years ago. There was trauma to my knee and entire leg. The main leg injury was a fractured femur (thighbone). At the time, the doctors said I had arthritis in my knee as a result of my knee smashing against the dashboard. I was told then that I would not really have any problems until 30 years down the road. As a 21 year old, I thought…”Yeah, ok. That’s when I’m old.”  So, here I am 40+ years later, living with a total knee replacement.

I am mentioning this since my tkr recuperation has added concerns as compared to the typical osteoarthritis (aging) concerns. That is the way it is and I accept that. I don’t compare myself with others and neither should you. There is no point in doing that. It can   result in feeling inadequate.

Recently one of my readers suggested having a flexion contest among the tkr readers/patients on my blog. I love that competitive spirit and found her enthusiasm refreshing. However, I would not stack up at all, and I’m not going to try to. While other tkr patients are striving for 115-135 flexibility range (kudos to you all!), I am not in the same ball park. I’m not your average bear.

Even though gauging yourself against other tkr patients will give you a general idea about experiences, comparisons between flexibility and activities is just not a good idea. That’s my opinion, anyways. For instance, I know that to “graduate” from physical therapy, 95 was the flexibility target goal for me. I saw other tkr patients, at the same time period of my surgery, with 115-120. I started to feel inadequate since I was struggling to reach 95. And, that was with my physical therapy lady pulling and pushing on me so hard I could have screamed loud enough for Asia to hear me. 😕 (I live in USA)

The only comparison you need to make is with yourself. All you can do is keep bettering yourself. Remember your pre-tkr flexibility and activity level. Then, compare it to how you are after your surgery. In my case, my flexion remains about the same as prior to my total knee replacement…90-95  And, I may never have more than that. My doctor told me to be prepared for that fact based upon my prior medical experience.

I believe it is important to mention this since comparing yourself with others can make you doubt your own accomplishments. What good is that? Anyone diligently working (doing their exercises) after a total knee replacement surgery needs to be proud of what they have accomplished. Do not doubt yourself.

So, when you hear of or see other total knee replacement patients with their desirable activity level, impressive flexion degrees, and other aspects you want to have – remember we are all different. You do not know their background. Stop comparing yourself to other tkr patients.

Good luck!

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other health concerns.

This award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 45+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Balance Issues After A Total Knee Replacement

Hi everyone! I have been asked about balance issues after a total knee replacement.  I have written about this topic in numerous posts, but have received requests for more tkr insight. So..here is a reprint containing insight that still applies.

Something strange and perplexing has been happening lately. There will be times when I move and suddenly lose my balance. It is not extreme, only a simply side step. To someone who didn’t know any better, it might appear as if I had been drinking too much alcohol or did not have my “sea legs” on.

I don’t understand why it’s happening, either. Sometimes it is due to my shoes losing ankle support. Other times it happens when I get out of a seating position and start to walk.

Other times it occurs for no reason at all. It may be due to my leg length discrepancy. Sometimes it happens when my glasses are not properly positioned (I have a prism in my lenses). It’s been 7 months, 1 week since my total knee replacement surgery.

Hope this helps others going through the same thing with balance issues after a total knee replacement. It is one of many tkr concerns.

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns.

This award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

And, Yet, Another Potential TKR Hazard

Hi everyone. Due to popular demand…Here is a reprint of a popular post of mine discussing yet another potential tkr hazard. The event took place prior to COVID19 times, but it is important to be aware of, since pandemic guidelines vary according to your area.

While eating out last night I came upon something I never in a million years would have thought of. It was a nail sticking out from the bench seating area. As I was fitting myself between the table and bench seating, something scraped me and caused pain. I looked down and ….a 3-inch nail was sticking out just waiting for someone to scrape against it.

Needless to say, as soon as the event occurred, I made a beeline to the kitchen and asked for rubbing alcohol and a band-aid. The scrape was starting to bleed, and it hurt. I was not a happy camper in the least. From now on I am going to check out everything prior to sitting down.

The management was very accommodating and soon I was bandaged and back at the table. Following me was the manager with a hammer in her hand. The nail was pounded into the wood so that no one else would have the surprise that I did.

Having heard so many horror stories about total knee replacements and infections, I wanted to play it safe. Probably…too safe. I called the doctor’s office to ask about if a tetanus shot was needed. I just envisioned having another tkr due to getting an infection.

As it turns out, no tetanus shot was needed.

Moral of this story: anytime you see wooden benches or furniture, look around for nails sticking out. Never before would I have thought about that. Nails are another potential hazard to watch out for when recuperating from a total knee replacement.  For that matter, this applies to anyone.

Remember it is always better safe than sorry. Sometimes I feel like a wimp. I do not like calling the doctor and am not used to it. After all, I’m in good health and plan on staying that way. My immune system is still recuperating and needs babied, however.

And so, Life goes on…if one is lucky…Hope this helps others going through the same thing.

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other health concerns.

This award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader.

The Immune System After A Total Knee Replacement

Hi everyone.  Many of you have contacted me about having colds after a tkr. This information is especially important during our COVID19 times.  Here is my personal story about the immune system after a total knee replacement…

After having a prolonged cold, of which I rarely get, I was scared about the intensity of my symptoms. So, I called the doctor. (Remember….I am not a doctor calling kind of person. Prior to my tkr, I only saw a doctor for annual physicals.)

I did not even have a general family doctor at the age of 55, since I didn’t need one. This isn’t intended as bragging, simply stating a fact.)

Anyways, I had never had such a serious cold and was concerned about it turning into a bacterial infection. Us total knee replacement patients (at least I am) are super sensitive to infections.

When I described my concern to the nurse, I asked if my swollen knee was a result of my immune system still being “not up to par”. I knew that a cold was a result of a weak immune system.

Yes, your immune system is still recuperating. That is why your knee is still swollen,” is what I heard. I was told that if it lasted for another couple days (it had already been two weeks), to go see my general physician.

Luckily, I just started drinking more warm liquids and eating soft foods. The symptoms were greatly decreased in two days. So…..no doctor. Whooppeee!!! (Nothing personal against doctors. 🙂 )

I am only relaying this information since it is amazing how everything in the human body is tied together in some form. To me, the human body is awe-inspiring. (Even with a recuperating bionic knee).

Everyone heals at their own rate and in their own way. Respect the intricacies of the human body to heal itself and adjust to the foreign object it has in it now (aka  your “bionic knee”).  Help it along as best as you can. This is especially true during our COVID19 times.

Hope my personal insight about The Immune System After A Total Knee Replacement helps others going through the same thing.

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns.
This multiple award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader.

Using Recliners As A TKR Exercise

Hi everyone. Recently, I had the privilege of communicating with one of my readers who shared some insight into sleeping after a tkr.  It involved using recliners as a tkr exercise.

This just goes to show that everyone is different during their recuperation process. Personally, recliners were far too uncomfortable for me to use during my first six months post-tkr. Even five years after a tkr, some of these furniture pieces are too difficult to use.

Here is the scoop:

Sit upright in the recliner. Put it into the reclining position. Use either a handle or arm strength to perform this maneuver. Whatever the chair requires.

Return the recliner to its upright position. This is where the tkr exercise comes into play.

Do this by applying pressure with your tkr leg. Push your heel and calf into the chair. You’ll definitely feel the backside of your leg working. That is your hamstring muscle(s).

DON’T DO THIS DURING YOUR INITIAL TKR RECUPERATION STAGE. And…when you do it, do it at your own risk. I’m not responsible for any mishaps that may occur.

It works for me because I take my time and have control over the situation. I know myself. It may not work for you.

Hope this helps others going through the same thing.
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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns.

This award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author , tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader.

We All Need Some Inspiration…The Old Fisherman

Hi everyone…. These are trying times for everyone.  TKR recuperation can be a difficult and lonesome time. If you are like me, there will be times when you just wonder what the point is. This is when we must be extra diligent in finding inspiration.  When it comes in the form of real-life stories, it is particularly welcoming. The Old Fisherman….

While searching the Web, I came across one such story that is bound to touch your souls and heart. It is called “The Old Fisherman”. Click on the link below to be taken to the actual story. If this story doesn’t lift your spirits, nothing will. Enjoy!

The Old Fisherman


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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns.

This multiple award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader.

How Negativity Affects A TKR

Hi everyone. Recently, I have received comments and emails regarding how frightening my blog is to read. I have written about this before, but believe something else needs to be said about how negativity affects a tkr.

MINDSET: Your mindset going into a tkr is what determines how well you will recuperate and how hard you will work. The pain of recuperation is intense. And…that’s a mild description. If you go into a tkr thinking “Oh my god, this is terrible”….it will be terrible. If you go into the tkr thinking “I’m going to make the best of this”….you will.

PAIN LEVEL: Also, if your pain level prior to a tkr is not to the point of you thinking “This pain is unbearable anymore. It is limiting my life. I can’t do what I want to do physically. Enough is enough!” …maybe you are not ready for a knee replacement. Personally, I was carrying crutches with me everywhere I went for a year prior to my surgery.

My knee was locking up whenever it wanted. I didn’t know what to expect or when it would happen. The pain was debilitating. I despised the uncertainty. Even the task of walking caused excruciating pain. And…I absolutely love to walk. I walk when others grab a cab, that’s how much I love it. I wanted to walk painlessly.

Prior to my tkr, I couldn’t move from a sitting or prone position without extreme pain. I needed to adjust my spinal column to lessen the pain.

RECUPERATION: The amount of exercising needed to recuperate from a tkr is immense. It is extremely easy to get frustrated (and we all do it). The time needed to do these exercises and see results is not a quick fix. It is a long and very arduous process. Everyone is different. Do not compare yourself to others. Compare yourself to yourself. Improve daily. Comparing yourself to how others are doing will surely play a role in how negativity affects a tkr.

Anyways, I hope this helps those of you thinking about undergoing a knee replacement. At least you are lucky enough to read about all that is involved regarding the long recuperation process. Many of my readers, and myself, were not that lucky. I went into the surgery thinking I would be kicking butts within a month. To say I was ill-prepared is an understatement.

Having a total knee replacement is the best thing I could have done. I have received the same feedback from many of my readers, also. In fact, this blog has turned into a very welcoming support system. For that, I am grateful to everyone who has contributed. 🙂

You will know when you’re ready. Listen to your intuition. Kindly don’t blame me for providing realistic information. I could write about a tkr negatively, but I don’t. There are far too many positive results involved. Yes, the information can be surprising and eye opening. Don’t tell me I scare or frighten you, that is not my intention. You interpret my words as you see fit.

Thanks for listening and best of luck to all!

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns.

This award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader.

Attitude “I Know I Can Do It” Matters

Hi everyone. As a tkr blogger, I have mentioned before about the importance of having a positive outlook or grateful attitude while going through tkr recuperation. Everyone experiences negative emotions during life. Did you know that having an attitude of “I Know I Can Do It” matters?

Upon doing research into games for handicapped individuals, I came upon this enlightening article I wanted to share. It just goes to show the importance of maintaining the proper attitude.

Enjoy!

Here is the link:
http://www.cureourchildren.org/sports.htm

Scroll down on the page and see an article titled..”I Know I Can Do It”. It’s worth taking the time to read…:)

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns.

This award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader.

Not Your Typical TKR Doctor Visit

Hi everyone. An event just popped into my mind while I was thinking about buying some new shoes requiring a shoe lift. As previously mentioned, I need to start wearing an external shoe lift again after my tkr. I thought the surgery took care of my leg length discrepancy, but was wrong. So, here is the event that turned the light bulb on….It is a book excerpt from my soon-to-be-released masterpiece.

It was during my year follow-up after my total knee replacement. My doctor and I were finding out how much of a leg length difference I had. He was placing different blocks underneath my tkr leg, with different thicknesses.

We went through about three of these. None seemed to work. Then, on the fourth….

“How does that one feel?” he asked.

“Hmmm. It feels better than the others. I’m not sure how much better, though,” I indecisively answered.

“OK,” he says as he removes the block and puts another one under my foot. (My back was turned to him).

“How does this one feel?” he asks.

The saga continues….

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other health concerns.

This award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader.

Is a Total Knee Replacement Worth It?

Hi everyone. I keep getting questions regarding whether is a total knee replacement worth it? Throughout my blog, I have mentioned the good and bad about having this surgery. Well, overall, it is without a doubt   worth it in my opinion. Here is a post worth resharing….

Prior to my tkr (total knee replacement), I could not go anywhere without carrying a pair of crutches. My knee was locking up, causing excruciating pain, and had a  mind of its own. I did not know when my knee was going to  lock up. It was bone on bone without any cartilage at all. And, bone spurs had formed due to this. Plus, my leg was misaligned due to my knee being so deformed. Enough.

There was one time that I did not carry my crutches with me, and I was left to rely upon strangers to help me walk. I vowed I would not have that happen again. Hence, carrying crutches around with me everywhere. No matter where I drove, my crutches were in the car.

So, if any of my readers get the impression that having a tkr is not worth it – think twice. There is no way that I would say it is not worth it.

Yes, the recuperation process is timely, painful, and a lot of work. It is worth it no matter how much pain is involved. The pain and recuperation is temporary. Having the ability to walk without pain is not. My love of walking outweighs the pain of recuperation- without any doubt.

Hope this helps others going through the same thing.

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other health concerns.

This multiple award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Using A Laptop After A TKR

Hi everyone. Some of you have asked me about using a laptop after a tkr..aka total knee replacement.   Since I was doing this one week after my surgery, here are a few suggestions that worked well for me and are worth sharing again:

BTW: It was too painful to sit with my feet on the floor during this time period. Besides…I didn’t have the flexibility to do that. 😕

* Sit on a sofa with a pillow behind your back. I’m a stickler for good posture. 🙂  Place a coffee table parallel to the sofa.

* Straighten your tkr leg and place your  foot onto a coffee table. Yes, there will be room between the sofa and table. This will help stretch out your hamstring. It may be painful, but what part of your tkr recuperation isn’t?

* I found putting some ice onto my tkr knee afterwards helped. You may decide to not do this…your choice.

* Put a pillow onto your lap. Place the laptop on the pillow. Make certain the distance/angle between your laptop and arms is not too much.

I like to have my lower arms parallel to my laptop to avoid any carpal tunnel effects. The pillow I use is not too fluffy and provides a nice cushion without affecting the laptop.

* Type away.

When it starts to get warm, just move the pillow & laptop onto the side for a bit. Stretch your fingers and arms.

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns.

This multiple award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author, tkr blogger, and tkr patient who has been living with various health conditions for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader.