recuperation

Meal Preparation After A TKR

Hi everyone. Literature regarding preparing for a total knee replacement states that for a time period after this arduous surgery, patients will need to have help in many areas. One area is meal preparation after a tkr.   I’ll vouch for that…

The first week after my tkr, it was very uncomfortable to stand up for longer than a few seconds. And, the crutches I needed to walk with added to the concern. It could be worse, yes, but I definitely agree it makes for an easier recuperation to have someone else do this task.

After the first week, there are ways to do it on your own. As much as I love eating plain steamed veggies, the task of preparing the veggies was too cumbersome for me. Heck, just filling the ice bag took everything I had. 🙁 So, I needed to make some changes. Here’s what worked for me:

Frozen vegetables. There is a reason for frozen vegetables. They came in VERY handy during my tkr recuperation and meal preparation. Either microwaved or poured into a steamer – quick and easy. The less time I spent standing in one position, the better. You are likely the same.

Frozen entrees. Formerly known as “tv dinners”, there are so many varieties and brands to choose from – it’s easy to find something that suits your palate. Plus, the nutritional value is decent.

All you need to do is remove them from the box, poke the plastic film, and pop them in the microwave. When done, just dig in. Quick and easy to the max.

Crockpots. I swear by these and have loved mine for more years than I care to admit to. 🙂 All you need to do is put in a piece of protein (like chicken), a washed and cut baked potato, and whatever other veggies you want. (If you don’t have the energy for the potato, just put in some rice with a little bit of liquid).

Of course, frozen veggies are the easiest. Sprinkle with some Italian seasoning, put on the lid, cook, and you have a great meal. It probably takes about 5 minutes to prepare.

There were (still are) times when I’d fill my crockpot with water, add some split peas, herbs, and frozen veggies. Cooked at high for about 4 hours is all it took to give me a deliciously easy and tasty bowl of soup.

Frozen fruit. These are marvels for not worrying about spoilage. Just take a handful out and add to some yogurt or simply pour into a bowl and enjoy.

Hope some of these meal preparation suggestions help you during your recuperation from a total knee replacement. The first couple of weeks is the most difficult. If you’re like me, the less time standing – the better.

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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 number of other health concerns.

This award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities 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 colds after a tkr.  Here’s my personal story after 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 RARELY needed the services of a doctor since my health was overall very good.

I didn’t even have a general family doctor, 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 my still 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.

Hope this  post 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.

Natural Edible Sleep Aides To Help Your TKR

Hi everyone. As we all know, sleeping is difficult while recuperating from a total knee replacement. Did you know that you can use some natural edible sleep aides to help your tkr recuperation?

Once the extreme pain lessens, foods can actually be used as natural edible sleep aides to help with your tkr recuperation. They can make a difference. They did – and still do – for me, anyways. I share my firsthand experiences to help others going through the same thing.

We all of these, experiment with different things to make sleep come easier. This is how I found out about the foods mentioned below. This combined with some research – both online and offline – set the foundation for sweet dreams.

Be aware, though, natural foods are not miracle cures. Your body has to digest the foods before you receive any benefits. (I know that’s common sense, but I had to say it.) Not all foods work for all people. We are unique individuals with unique physiologies.

Whether it is tryptophan, magnesium, protein, calcium, carbohydrates, potassium, or vitamin B6 – there is something for everyone here. So…here goes:

BANANAS
These are my favorite. A perfectly ripe banana does the trick every time. The potassium eases any pain involved, making it a surefire hit on the list of natural sleep aides. For an extra kick, mix one into some yogurt and enjoy.

YOGURT and DAIRY
Warm milk has been a natural sleep remedy since great grandmother’s youth. Any dairy product works well, though. My favorite is plain yogurt.

Plain yogurt not only settles the digestive system, the calcium helps release tryptophan into the body. According to researchers, the brain uses tryptophan to manufacture melatonin.

LEAFY GREENS
Try eating a handful of leafy greens before going to bed. I like munching on them by themselves. You may be different, though.

Leafy greens include red, butter, iceberg, romaine, kale, spinach, Or, make a simple tea by steeping some greens in hot water for two minutes. Let cool for a bit and drink.

NUTS
Enjoy a serving of walnuts, which contain noticable amounts of tryptophan. Put some on a green salad for an extra taste treat before hitting the hay.

Almonds are known for being magnesium sources. Magnesium has a reputation for being increasing sleep quality. I like eating about five whenever needed.

That’s all I can think of for now for foods that can be used as natural sleep aides. Do you have any food suggestions to share about holistic healing?

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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 physicalities 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.

TKR Dead Weight: Is This You?

Hi everyone! I have received quite a few comments lately about the worries of having a very stiff and “nonfunctional” tkr (total knee replacement) leg for a time after the surgery.  Here’s some more insight about tkr dead weight: is this you?

Unexpected happening. My entire leg was a complete dead weight after surgery. I was not prepared for this aspect. No one told me about it, either. Nor did I read it in any tkr literature. None of my leg muscles were working (except my ankle and hamstrings).

Front stretching needed. My tkr knee needed gentle stretching exercises to increase the bend along the front part of my new knee.

Manually lift. Plus, I needed to manually lift my leg up onto sitting/laying surfaces. I used a towel or my hands to do this. That was one bizarre experience!

In hindsight, since our quadriceps are cut into during the total knee replacement, it goes without saying that a tkr dead weight situation would result. It just would have been nice to be informed of that so we could be properly prepared. It was a shocker to me!

Bent knee. I also needed to work on stretching out my hamstrings, along the backside of my knee, to straighten my leg. My leg would not lay flat on any surface. There was a slight bend in it.

No body weight support. Even though I was up and walking on a walker the day after my tkr, my muscles were still not developed enough to support my body weight.

No foot slides. I remember sitting in a chair and not being able to slide my foot at all. I am certain everyone goes through this. This is when those assisted physical therapy exercises come into play.

It has been eight years since my total knee replacement and my leg still gets stiff and painful after prolonged periods of walking or standing. I just rest, elevate, and ice. It’s no big deal.

Hope my tkr blog post about tkr dead weight helps others going through the same thing. Remember, you are not alone in this endeavor. Take a look around this site for more tkr insight from myself and readers.

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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 physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.

Marie is also a proud WEGO Health Patient Leader.

Frustration After A Total Knee Replacement

Hi everyone. Here’s a request reprint of a blog post from 2008 about having frustration six months after a total knee replacement: 

 

Going downstairs is very slow, with my knee needing much increased flexibility. Plus, it is painful. I know that I need to keep working at it, but it is just frustrating.

 

I did not expect it to take so long to recuperate from a tkr. Stairs are a great exercise for me, though.  I do notice the increased flexibility, too.

 

My knee area is still swollen. I was told by the doctor’s office it would take about 2-3 months. Sure. I know nothing is wrong, since my x-ray is perfect. My recuperation is just taking time. Everyone has a different recuperation time.

Nausea & A TKR

Hi everyone. Nausea and a tkr isn’t an exciting topic or one that you want to read at the dinner table. Still..it needs to be discussed since some of you have asked me about it….

Of the many comments I’ve received lately, a common theme concerns nausea after tkr and during recuperation. “What is your experience?â” I’ve been asked? So, here it is…

I had nausea during two periods after my tkr. The first was caused by the anesthesia while I was recuperating in the hospital. I didn’t eat much while in the hospital.

The only other episode occurred when I took the “pain meds” (I use parentheses since the meds did not handle the pain). The nausea was mild, but still noticeable. I remember that episode as being two weeks. Then, I just started aspirin.

After those two periods, no problem. The only other time I get nauseous nowadays is when I see someone eat nacho chips covered with that orange-colored liquid stuff called cheese.

Or, come to think about, when I see that orange stuff on any food. I’m suddenly not feeling well. I need to clear my mind.

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 healthline.com award-winning site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr blogger/patient who has been living with various physicalities 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.

Driving After A Total Knee Replacement

Hi everyone. After receiving some requests regarding driving after a total knee replacement (tkr), I thought a post here would be appropriate…

The standard literature us patients are given upon preparing for a tkr recommends not driving until at least 6 weeks after surgery. I had no choice but to do it sooner, however.

The reason being is that I needed to go to physical therapy and didn’t want to impose upon anyone for a  lift. Besides, I like to drive and wanted to experiment – as long as I didn’t harm myself.

Well, I can definitely see how six weeks is an appropriate time frame if the leg you use for the accelerator is the one that had a total knee replacement.

For instance, if your bionic knee is on your right leg, you’re going to have difficulty driving. There just won’t be enough flexibility to operate the accelerator, in my opinion.

However, my bionic knee is on my left leg. I could operate the accelerator with no problem. There were other problems (concerns) as mentioned below.

If my car was clutch-operated, there was no way I could have driven it within six weeks. Maybe after about 4-6 weeks, but even then there would have been extreme discomfort. Hey, driving a clutch might be another good recuperation exercise. 😉

My car has an automatic transmission. I had a problem,   with the following while driving after a total knee replacement. You may be the same:

  • Getting in and out of the car. Extreme caution had to be used to prevent any turning of the foot, hitting of the leg, and unnecessary bending of the leg.

  • Seat adjustment. I needed to put my seat back as far as I could to get in and out my vehicle properly. Nine months later, I still need to do this sometimes.

  • Sitting comfortably. This was painful. I needed to elevate my foot to alleviate some of the knee pain.

  • Time involved. It definitely is not a quick process.  The entire process is much slower than typical.

There were other areas that caused concern, but the above four were the most noticeable. No complaints, just stating facts. 🙂

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

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). 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 other physicality concerns.

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

Good Stretching Helps after TKR

Hi everyone! We all know the importance of strengthening and stretching our tkr leg muscles after surgery in order to improve our leg functioning.  Due to pain levels being so intense, it’s easy to forget how good stretching helps after a tkr.

When you finally reach a point where the pain level is lowered enough to allow other movement and you can stand with weight evenly distributed between both legs, here’s a good stretching exercise that involves nothing other than body weight….

Stand with legs shoulder-width apart. Reach your arms out to the sides so your body forms a “T”. Turn your palms facing forward. Gently lean back from the waist to increase the stretch.

Increase the stretch by moving your head in conjunction with your upper body and look toward the ceiling. Hold this stretch for as long as comfortable.

When done correctly, you will feel a good stretch along your entire body including your neck, pectorals and chest, shoulders, arms, abdomen, thighs and butt.

Don’t use any sudden movements, only a gentle stretch. Breathe normally throughout this exercise.

Try this gentle stretch throughout the day. Good luck!

Let me know how it works for you. Thanks!

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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 physicalities for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.