Swelling & Stiffness…Total Knee Replacement Concerns

Hi everyone! I don’t understand. I know exercise is important while recuperating from a total knee replacement. So, I exercise and my knee gets more swelling and stiffness. Then, I elevate and ice it. Then, it gets worse before better.

I don’t understand. I hear that moving will keep my (or any tkr patient’s) knee from getting stiff. So, I move. My knee still gets stiff. What’s up with that?

Finally, I just don’t understand. Why does my knee get stiff whether I move or keep still? (It’s not that I can’t move it…it just sometimes takes time to get flexible.)

Hope this helps others going through the same thing.

Find this tkr blog post about swelling and stiffness – total knee replacement concerns interesting? Kindly share….Thanks!

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.

The healthline.com 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 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.



53 thoughts on “Swelling & Stiffness…Total Knee Replacement Concerns”

  1. I’m sorry to know that. Could it be that you’re overdoing your exercise routine? Maybe you need to take a rest for a while. I would suggest that you ask your doctor about it and ask for advice.

  2. It has been 13 days since my knee replacement. I was very acive before the surgery and am anxious to get back on my feet. There is still considerable swelling and pain – especially after exercising or walking ( with a cane). How long did it take you (or others) to get off of narcotics? How long before you wake up and are happy to greet the day? Is there a light at the end of this tunnel?

  3. HI Pamela,
    The first week is definitely the most difficult. And, the second week is just a little better. Are you icing after exercising? This will help with the pain and swelling.

    I never did get those “hard narcotics” since insurance wouldn’t cover them and I was too cheap to buy them. I figured I’d “tough it out”. That’s an understatement. 🙂

    Keep exercising and best of luck! There is light at the end of the tunnel. It just takes a lot of work. I’m still not there, and it’s been 7 months. 🙂

  4. You’re most welcome, Booktoots. I hope you two, Pamela and Booktoots, will soon see the light at the end of the tunnel–you’re definitely right on that Booktoots. Having to undergo a total knee replacement isn’t really an easy one. Just follow the doctor’s advices and you two should just be fine. Good luck.

  5. My husband had double knee replacement on July 8th, 2008. He’s otherwise fit so that’s why the doc said he could do both at one time. He is an electrician at a power plant and his company just forced him back into work (even though he has 6 months of full pay sick leave). The doctor has not even released him yet but they put him at a desk job (there really is no such thing for electricians). What’s the deal – they don’t seem to understand how difficult the recovery for this is even though the rest of the world does. How can this be legal? He is still going to therapy and is still weak, balance not fully back, still swelling, still on pain meds……..

  6. Hey, it takes a lot longer then many people admit to recover. I am at one year and every now and then I still have pain for a day or two. Probably over-do.

    I also have a problem in going very slowly and carefully down stairs. Up is fine. Hang in there.

  7. This was 1 year this past October that I had bilateral knee replacement. It takes a while to get over the surgery but it gets better with every passing week. I don’t have the pain I had before the surgery but my knees do get stiff when I stand too long, walk too long or sit too long. But it was worth it. They are not my regular knees but at least I can get around which was very painful before the surgery.

  8. Hi Pamela,

    I am at 19 days out from tkr. I have been wondering the same thing. I have been using pain meds and muscle relaxers as i am having pretty severe muscle spasms. My problem is no energy whatsoever and some nausea still. I am one of those people who dont do well with anesthesia but did not expect it to last this long. I am kind of hitting the stage where i am wondering what i was thinking in getting the tkr but i also realize that in a few months i will be really happy. Can anyone tell me if they were still feeling exhausted at this point?

  9. Karen,
    The first month out of a tkr is the worse. I was tired all the time. No, make that exhausted.
    And, I got so sick from anesthesia I had no appetite and lost weight.
    Hang in there…it’ll be worth it. Just takes time.
    My knee is still swollen, I still get tired, and I still ice….and it’s been almost 11 months since my tkr. It’s a LONG recuperation process after a tkr (total knee replacement).
    It’ll get better. Keep truckin’. Good luck!

  10. Karen,
    I had my surgery Dec. 3rd 2008. I find that now that I’m mostly off the pain killers, when I take them to go to therapy I feel nauseaus. I also get those spasms above the knee. I never know when they’re going to hit. How I haven’t fallen is beyond me. As for being tired, it slowly gets better.

    I just asked my therapist the other day about the more I exercise the more it swells and hurts. He told me to do short increments instead of longer ones.

    The only thing I ever heard before a tkr was that once your through therapy it’s worth it. I wish I had know what all that entailed beforehand!

  11. Thanks for all your comments and support, everyone.

    It seems that the medical profession does not prepare us patients for the demanding recuperation process that follows. At first I thought it was just me.

  12. I hit my (L) knee with my dolly at work in Sept.2006, after going to the Dr. I was told it was just a contusion, there was ex-rays and an MRI done, still the same answer. the knee was swollen, popping and kept going out on my but I contiuned to work with limataions. My knee finally gave out and I fell (at work) then my Dr.sent me to a surgeon who found a meniscal tear, chondromalaicia and synovitis, now this was from the old MRI that was just suppose to be a contusion. I underwent surgery and repair was done to the meniscus. This was March of 2008, I am still having the problem of knee popping and going out on me I have fallen or almost fallen from the knee giving out,. Dr. tells me that there is swealing and to rest, Ice and take my pain meds. Is there something else that could be wrong or is there anything that I could do for this? I guess I want to know If knee replacement may be nesesary>

  13. Thanks for your really interesting comment, LadyRider. I’m not a medical professional, but am wondering if you have sought a second opinion.
    Good luck!

    For the pain and swelling relief, however….I swear by icing.

  14. I’m searching for positive results from someone who already has had a TKR. I’m having one in about 2 weeks. I have very little tolerance with the pain I’ve been through for about 2 1/2 years now. I had the torn cartliage repaired but my knee is rubbing bone to bone. Excruciating pain in the least plus swelling and of course, my knee looks deformed. Not the Drs. fault though. He did a great job. I fell and really damaged both of my knees. My Dr. said, as I ask him about being free of pain, that TKR absolutely works. My Pastors wife had it in her 60’s and is absolutely thrilled with the results. I’m scared of course because this is a big surgery. So, any hopeful or positive words from anyone who has had this surgery done. I mean, its unbelieveable how badly I have suffered for over two years not having the replacement. I was told not to get one done until I absolutely and positively could not bear the pain anymore, and I am there. I put off a long time and its actually done nothing but gotten worse, but its the fear of the unknown I suppose. Steps are a real pain and I’ve become so dependent on a cane that someone will probably have to hide mine after my surgery. lol

  15. To Ladyrider – and anyone considering having a TKR…If you are in New England or the northeast, make an appointment with Dr. John Siliski at Mass General Hospital. He is head surgeon of the knee clinic there and he is fantastic. Mass General is known as one of the best hospitals in the world and he is certainly one of the top knee surgeons in our country. He did a ligament reconstruction for me after a traumatic car injury – i saw other doctors and was told they couldn’t do the surgery, only 3 doctors in the country had and could – he was one of them. That surgery was 9 years ago, now it is time for him to do my TKR. After all the research and blog reading Ive done, I’m so happy to have him as a doctor. Anyone looking for a second opinion or experiencing problems who need a top doctor (harvard boy) to consult with – it’s worth the travel – I’ve lived in New Orleans for the past 8 years and flew back to Boston to consult with him again & will be staying in Mass for my TKR. It’s worth it – when it comes to your ability to walk, nothing but the best will do.

  16. We certainly go through a lot to recover from tkr surgery and everyone tells us in the end it is worth it. I am on my eighth month tomorrow since my surgery, It has not been easy but it does get better. This morning I went for walk, about 1 and quarter miles round trip. I find usually that is all I can handle at this point. Stairs are getting better and I gradually drop the seat on my stationary bike by a 1/4 inches per week. No pain meds any more although sometimes at night I do wake up with knee pain which is caused by the way I am sleeping.
    Things are a long way from perfect. My rom is not good yet, and I do suffer with pain periodically and have swelling but it is getting better.
    Many years ago, when I was complaining about spasms and charlie horses, a friend recommended trying Potassium, so I did. I take one tablet once a day and do not have spasms any more unless I forget for a couple of days. Perhaps this will help sevenkittensmom. Good luck!

  17. Ok, I’m 5 weeks after my TKR. I never dreamed there could be such horrid pain! I had 4 weeks of in home therapy and that they tell told me has gotten me ready for outside therapy which I start monday. Two to three times a week for 4 to 6 weeks. I already know I’m in for three times a week for 6 weeks. You just know therapy will do the long haul. I dread it but if I’m ever going to get where I need to be I have to do it. I still have pain and stiffness but its getting better. I was upgraded from walker to cane just three weeks after home therapy. I do have to fight fear of falling. I think thats my battle more than therapy. I can tell you, that I’ve cried like a baby many times and still do but thats getting better too. I also have many wake ups during the night if I move my leg the wrong way and the outside of my knee is still partially numb and my surgeon who is very good said it may never go away. I’ve compared the 2 1/2 year pain in my knee and difficulty walking before the surgery and right now I’m wondering if I did the right thing. I’m sure I did but I thought I would have a couple weeks of pain and all would be well…Wrong! I will not be able to get on my knees for 6 more months! Everybody tells me that once I get through ever how long it takes to heal, some say from 3 months to a year? I would not regret it, but I was very disappointed to find out that these replacement knees are only good for ten years. What a rip! Oh well, just as long as I can be pain free again, I’ll be happy. So, I do know all the qualms you all have about the horrid pain, ice, trying to sleep etc. So in saying that, God Bless us all and to us all a speedy recovery. I’m tired of staying in! Actually I can count on my two hands how many times I’ve been outside my house other than the yard in 2 1/2 years. Unbelieveable huh? Its the truth though.

  18. Hi,

    I wrote last night but these knee replacements are just full of surprises as I’m sure you all know. Last night after I went to bed trying to get into a comfortable position, which I might say was very difficult to do, my knee started popping on both sides like crazy. They tell me popping is ok but not pain. I’m concerned as the whole side of my leg was fairly numb. The outside of my knee stays numb and they say it may never go away. Anybody else having these kind of issues? By the way, I cannot sit up with my legs hanging down because my right leg ( surgery knee) starts hurting. I cannot be on my desk computer long, which I’m on now because my leg hurts so bad and I can feel numbness starting. I have a laptop but its so hard trying to figure out a comfortable way to place it because my knee controls everything about moving right now. Help, anyone?

  19. hi cowgirl,
    welcome to the tkr club. i am 49 and 7 mos post op. i am always amazed at the different problems that i read on these blogs. just goes to show you that we are all different and there are no two knees the same, not even your own. i can tell you that pretty much everything you are saying sounds normal. i had some of the same issues as far as numbness. i hope you get lucky and some of that goes away,. as for me i am numb throughout my whole knee due to having 4 prior surgeries before my tkr. but that happens. the knee pain hanging down, i had too. its the muscles, ligaments stretching back out. let your leg hand down for a long as you can take it and eventually along with your pt that will get better. i used to sit on my swing outside last summer, surgery was 7/08, and just let the muscles stretch out. as far of the cane, just use it until you feel comfortable. i used it for 3 mos. or so. i will tell you that the rehab is very important in determining how long the knee will take to feel good. a year is really more the truth,only because it takes almost that long for the muscles and tendons to work well again. it will be worth it and you will want nothing but to go outside everywhere to show off your new knee before you know it. keep positive, keep moving, keep blogging and take care of yourself. and it will happen. and welcome to the club. god bless.

  20. Pamela,

    You are so fresh out of surgery that your gonna have some bad pain.I was put on my cane at 4 weeks and I was wobbly as the therapist held on to me. I was scared that I might fall. I walked with a cane for about 2 years and a half and I felt like this was the first ime I ever used one. Just keep coming back here and reading and posting your questions and concerns. I have found out that I’m really not any different than a lot of others who have had tkr. Keep working hard. I didn’t wan’t to do therapy because it hurt so bad but by the next day I was fine. I’m learning from this site that after surgery can be a long process for many but everyone is different in many ways too. Its kind of like, all different, yet all the same.

  21. Hello Everyone,

    well, I saw my surgeon today and as I said earlier today I had questions for him and I ask them. First of all, knee popping is normal with a TKR. Its normal because all of the muscles that were moved during the surgery are being forced back into place. Hot knee is ok too. I had therapy today and after my first 5 minute excerise, my knee was really hot! Perfectly normal. Pretty much all of the symptoms we all are having are normal.We have to remember that we all went through a very stressful invasive proceedure and its going to take time to heal. Everybody is going to be different. Example: I met a woman at therapy today. She was walking across the floor towards me. She had shorts on, and I gaped my mouth open in surprise as I saw she had a double knee replacement 7 weeks ago today. One week ahead of me. She was walking rather speedily and I picked up my lip I ask her, both knees at once? She said yes. I was amazed at her ability to walk so well with no assistance! She still needed therapy to help get things back in line but I could not get over her progress! She had 8 days of rehab at the hospital after her surgery, I had in home therapy for 4 weeks and then started outside therapy. Obviously our therapy choices are important. I could have had the same rehab but I opted for in home because I wanted to get out of that hospital! So, in saying all this, hang in there because nothing were going through is abnormal and were all eventually going to reach our goals, it just may be different for all of us. You remember the saying, “Theres no two people just alike”? Well, theres our answer but I still will have questions and I will make comments on here as I get new encouraging words for us. I’m very thankful I found this website. Bless us everyone towards a quicker recovery than we can imagine!

  22. Hello Everyone,

    I’ve come up with a new symptom from my TKR. I was told that my knee would be numb permanently on the outside where I was given a nerve block. I’m concerned because that area of my knee has started to burn and is very aggravating. I can feel my whole knee but the area that suppose to be numb is the same feeling. Kind of like I sat on my leg for a while, then when you get up its numb until the blood starts flowing again.I’m not totally numb and thats good but I was wondering if anyone else had this problem. Now yesterday, I hurt all day long as the numb part of my knee was giving off shooting pains than ran all the way down to my ankle. I’m talking bad pain that quickly got my attention. I’m 7 weeks post-op tomorrow the 22nd of march. I’m doing well in therapy and I’m at 117 degrees flexability. I’m just wondering how long until the pain which is better for me by the way,will go away, and how long will I feel like my knee weighs really heavy. Someone out there is experiencing this I know and I will wait for your response. I appreciate this website so much as it continually helps me not to worry because a lot of people have been through and going through what I have and still am. What a blessing this site has been to me and its helped me not to worry and keep my sanity. Thabk all of you as I understand your concerns too.

  23. I’m impressed with 117 degrees at 7 weeks! I think I barely had that at 9 weeks…….

    I also had the tingling shooting pain from the outside of my knee, and that’s what prompted me to google and how I found Booktoots’ blog…..That pain has since subsided for the most part……Now that outside hurts when I turn over in bed, or when I get up from a seated position, especially if I’ve been sitting for awhile.

    At work, I sit down as often as I can, which isn’t much, but then often times it’s very difficult to stand up again, so not sure it’s worth it to sit.

    The heaviness does go away, I’m not sure when mine went, but I know for a long time, it seemed like the area above my knee was like a lead bowling ball!

    I’m 4 months past my TKR and each week things are better. This weekend, I have been working vigorously in my yard, and other than being really tired and sore, and not having much stamina, I have held up okay! At least my knee is no longer wobbly and my footing seems more stable. I am also very careful and move slower than most would….I’m afraid of falling, obviously!

    Are you using some really good cream or lotion and massaging that numb area on a regular basis? That seems to help.

    Hang in there, and keep us posted!

  24. Yep1 I feel like i’m lugging around a ball and chain around my knee but the jelly wobbly feeling is slowly going away. I still fear falling as thats why I’m where I am today. Let me tell you this. My home therapist was very aggressive and I often cried when he pushed down on my knee. Now I know it was needed to straighten out my bowed knee. I can almost match my other knee by about an inch. Take the therapy and cry all you want to because it will bring your outside therapy a quicker result. I had to hug my in home therapist when he left and thanked him for bring me to using a cane when he left. In this TKR no pain no gain is as far as I’m concerned a great benefit towards recovery.

    God Bless and carry on people, we have some work to do. My surgeon said he wanted me at 105 degrees flexion and I’m 117 as I told you before. 135 is perfection. Lets see how many of us can get that accomplished. Game on! report you flexion as it increases and lets make it a contest to see who gets the highest flexion. I love competition and right here is the place to start. You in? Let me know!

  25. Been 3 months for me now since TKR. Nobody ever told me how painful the rehab was going to be – aha. I mean, I was totally shocked at that one the first day the therapist came around the house. I think it varies for everyone. Personally, I think after the initial month, things pick up. I did exceptionally well – in 3 weeks I was up and down a ladder cutting in paint in the living room with ease, then at night sometimes I couldn’t sleep because of weird pains and muscle contractions. So everyone is different. I also had a numb knee on the outside but at 3 months it seems to be slowly getting some feeling back. Here is a tip – I run vitamin e oil on the scar daily – i have a tendency to have widened scars and that vit e seems to improve the appearance a little bit. It is totally worth it down the road to have TKR. Search out the BEST — and I mean THE BEST surgeon with a reputation to do your surgery. I chose the best I could find and I think it makes a difference – I did not want the guy who does 8 or so in his career, I chose the guy who does 8 a week. They have seen it all and have the experience. Good luck every one.

  26. Hey Jona,

    I agree with you 100% on getting the “Best” surgeon. My surgeon does at least 20 of these TKR! I was impressed to say the least on that, but I’ve been seeing him for 2 years and 7 months so I had the chance to really see his demeaner and he also did scopes on both my knees. He is super. Now, the popping in my knee is getting more frequent and I can actually lift my knee up and down in bed and its like pushing a button on a remote. Pick up, stops. Lay it down and pop! Kind of crazy but at least some more of my pain is going away. Oh, I still have pain and I take a pain pill when I need it but its not as often. I have pain in my ankle too! I suppose its from the hammering of the steel rod into my bone in order to connect the knee. I know this because I’ve seen it done on discovery medical network. Some people can’t watch it but I did and still do watch different types of surgery. Funny thing is, if I had known that one day I would have to go through that surgery….Off the T.V. would have went! You know, we have to laugh at things we do sometimes or we would become bonified nut cases! I can’t believe you were painting walls? I’m pretty tuff too. I was doing dishes on the second day home and vacumning holding on to my walker! I told my therapist that when he came back for my next therapy session and he looked at me real stearn and said, ‘Did I tell you that you could do that?’ then he looks at me and says,’NO!’ I did not! lol OOPS! I thought I was in big trouble but I took his ‘NO’ as never again unless he said! I’m so glad to have found this web site because it has given me comfort and a great peace of mind knowing that I’m not alone. Kudo’s on the painting but, please be careful. K?

  27. Cowgirl – the day I left the hospital, the surgeon told us (we were kept together in a little club for inhospital sessions) that we cannot hurt the new knee. Cannot hurt it. BUT if we overdo, we will feel the results of overdoing. With that, I took it that anything goes without harm yo the knee and I asked on two subsequent visits….same reply. Last week I moved two tons of stone via wheelbarrow. I took it slow over 3 days, but had not a pain in the knee. However, today as I do nothing, I have stiffness off and on from doing nothing. So it varies per person in the aftermath of surgery. My guy left us with the impression that we can do anything we want, but be prepared for some activity pain. I had the computer-aided quad-sparing surgery with a 4 inch scar. I think because the quads were not cut, I got back up to a certain level very quickly – within 2 weeks. Then the slow healing took over – that is where I am now. I try to feel where the new knee is attached to the bone and in certain places it hurts yet, but lordy, after 6 rehab sessions, I was pretty happy. I don’t like that “popping” stuff of the plastic and wasn’t prepared to have it, but I do think it eases up over time. I just want peole who suffer with pain to know that TKR is initially pret-ty uncomfortable with the bending required by the therapists, but over time you will be totally amazed and the improvement in your life. Nobody should not have the surgery for fear of the aftermath. It’s wonderful.

  28. Morning everyone,

    I’ve got a new one for TKR. patients. I went into my basement yesterday to do a small load of laundry. Sounds ok so far right? Well, I don’t particularly care about steps too much right now as I’m careful not to trip or fall. No, I didn’t fall, I went a bit further. Something that never crossed my mind. While coming back upstairs with a load of clothes in my right arm and using my cane with my right, I couldn’t see very clear where I was going but managed to get out of my basement. Oh, but not before I accidently kicked my foot on my right side which is also my knee replacement side, smack dab into the top back side of the step! Ouch, I thought, that hurt! I sat down and folded my clothes only to feel my knee begin to throb. The longer I sat down folding my clothes the worse the pain got. Now I had a soft knot on the outside of my leg before i kicked the step accidently that was now gone. A pocket of water it was that after the pain worsened, I called the on-call physician and learned that I had not injured my replacement but the hard jar my foot made against the step had sent riviting pain up to my knee and caused the pocket of water or fluid to burst. OMG! The pain was unbelieveable and its still hurting this morning even after taking a pain pill. I’m telling you this to make you aware of just how easy it is to cause pain to your TKR. I’m in my 7th week post op and yes the inside of the knee is still healing, muscles finding their original place before they were moved during surgery. So, in ending this post, I want to tell you all to be very careful at anything you do. Especially if your climbing stairs. As for me, I think I’ll just let someone else get the laundry and bring it to me. I’m nixing the stairs for now. I mean, who would have thought something dso simple as walking into a step could cause such pain and cause the pain while walking or sitting. Even lying down, I have bad pain shooting through my knee and leg.So I get no kudos today.A simple kick against a step. Who would have known? Now you know so careful everyone, the pain is not pretty.

  29. I had double knee replacement on 2-9-09 and had 2 femoral nerve blocks and as of today 3-27-09 I am completely numb from the groin area down. Everyone says that they had never seen a case like this before and I was wanting to find someone that has had this same problem. Hey, this is my life and I feel like the doctors have abandoned me. They just say that time will tell. I am still in home therapy.
    Please email me with any info. Thanks, Roger

  30. hey cowgirl
    that is some story. hope your feeling better soon. i must tell you that even at 8 mos post op i let someone carry my baskets up and down. if i have to carry a light load up i hold it with 2 hands and put it on the step by step and use it as a railing to get up. and your bent over so you can’t tip back. i hope you can picture this how i described it. anyway just a suggestion. I have come to realize that everything we do now has to be thought of differently. i figure this though, it is preparing us for the golden years. take care and be careful.

  31. be prepared for the worst two weeks of your life,take your pain med, don’t be a hero . also good support
    group is a big plus. i’m six weeks out and back to work
    still sore and stiff but getting better every week.
    good luck
    you can do it we all get threw it.

  32. Hi my name is Mike and I will be having my TKR on my right knee on June 10th. My doctor assures me that I will be able to return to work (computer technician) after 8 weeks. Does this sound reasonable? After reading your experiences here I see that all have different outcomes. As for me, in the last 2 months I have lost 30 lbs with the help of WW. My wife and I also joined the gym at the same time and we workout 5 days a week, after work. Three days of cardio with emphasis on leg muscle building and 2 days martial arts training. I do what I can do and don’t do what I can’t. I feel much stronger than I did before and am really hoping for a good experience with TKR. I am a 51 year old but my activity level has been down, until recently, because of knee pain and well, honestly, my weight. I’m excited, anxious, nervous, scared, terrified all rolled into one, which I guess is normal. Please keep me in your prayers. Thanks, Mike

  33. Hey Mike,

    Sounds like you have made some really good choices thus far! The leg strengthening exercises will pay off….I wish I had been more informed before my surgery.

    I was back to work after 9 weeks off, and my job is 95% standing and 5% walking, on a concrete floor, 40 hours a week……it took about a month to get my stamina and strength back, but all is good now…at work anyway!

    I’m still working on my flex, and my quads….but we got our pool open last week, so the last 3 days I have been in the water, moving, bending, stretching…..can’t quite swim yet, too much stiffness still. But I’ll get it there by the end of summer.

    My biggest problem now, is climbing up and over the ladder……I scare my hubby…..he’s afraid I will fall for sure…..I’m sure I won’t!

    Best of luck…..come back and give us an update!

    LTKR 11/18/2008

  34. Hi Roger,
    I had surgery for medial meniscal tear, and acl recontruction dec 08, and the block took 1 1/2 years to wear off. I had rtkr 4 weeks ago, and the block from that wore off after the first week. I guess it just depends on the person administering it. I hope this gives you some encouragement.
    Take care and God bless,

  35. Hello everyone,
    I am 4 weeks post op rtkr.
    I am wondering if anyone has cried during pt. My therapist manipulated my knee last friday I was fine. Sore but ok. Then monday he did it again a little further this time, and it brought tears to my eyes. I beat the mess out of that bed, and screamed DEAR GOD HELP ME!!!
    Then this morning I woke up crying from dreaming I was on my way to therapy. (Which I have today).
    He said I have to get to 120 d. or my foot will drag when I walk. I get that. But, should it hurt that bad being manipulated?
    Thank you so much for your time and information.

  36. Yes, I definitely cried. Sometimes I was in tears when I got there, and it got worse!

    Be patient, stock up on tissues, another couple of weeks and you will be much better!

    I always took a pain pill right before I left the house, which was about 20 minutes before my appointment. I think it helped take the edge off the pain, and most days I came home and crashed on the sofa for a couple of hours, just totally exhausted.

    I don’t remember now, what my flex was when I left PT at the end, but I do think it decreased for a while, but now I think it’s much better, especially since I’ve been in the pool the past 10 days……I’m getting a whole different type of stretching and movement.

    Hang in there…..it will get better….we have all been there.


  37. Thank you Debi.. I had pt today. I cried like a baby. Partly because it hurt sooo bad, and the rest I have no idea. Maybe because it was a release. I just figure it this way it has to be done, and if crying gets me through it so be it. Thank you so much for your time. God bless you all,

  38. Beth McElhiney

    Hello Everyone,
    I was a runner and a gymnast when I was young and have been paying the price the past 20 years. I had my fourth surgery in December to clean out my right knee and it has not healed well at all so now my doctor is saying the only option is a knee replacement. I am 45 and in pretty good shape but they have not wanted to do one on me before due to my age. What ages are most of you and was that a consideration in your doing the surgery? Reading these posts has kind of freaked me out…
    Thanks and heal quickly

  39. Hi Beth,
    Thanks for visiting my blog. These posts are not intended to freak anyone out. They are providing a realistic viewpoint of what to expect from a tkr. Recuperation is a long, arduous process. In the end, however, it is WELL WORTH IT.
    I was 54 when I had my surgery. Age was not a consideration, my pain level was. Hope this helps.

  40. hey beth
    i feel your pain. i had my tkr last july and am about 3wks post op from a revision on that tkr. i am 49. i had 4 surgeries prior to the tkr to and with each one it only got worse. i got several other opinions from doctors who said i was to young for a tkr. my surgeon who did all my surgeries told me that i need to make my decision based on my quality of life at MY age. the pain is still the pain whether you are 45 or 60. the only thing you have to be aware of is that revisions are going to be apart of your life especially if you are active. but you want to be active at your age so you have to make the choice. the young patients do very well with this surgery. and more and more are getting it done who have been in your situation . do yourself a favor and get other opinions. and do your homework to prepare yourself and your family or whoever will take care of you. and then you will not be FREAKED out when the time comes. and remember in the end only you can make the decision to satisfy your quality of life.take care

  41. I had my tkr on 6 July; out the hospital by 9 July and back in with an infection (Cellulitis) by 15 July. I stayed in 5 days and left with two PICC lines in my arm so that I could receive antibiotics at home. That lasted until 28 July. My wife and daughter did a great job learning how to flush the lines and administer the antibiotics. My out-patient PT started 10 August. On 3 Feb 1968 I was wounded in Vietnam (former Marine) and spent 6 weeks in the hospital. Maybe because I was much younger I feel this way, but I would take that experience over my July ’09 any day. I’m now walking daily and have certain exercises that I do at home and in the gym. The knee is still stiff at times and I brace myself when I go leg for leg down the stairs. Sometimes I feel that my anxiety is more in my mind than with my knee. The stationary bike is very good for loosening up the knee. Right now, I can only walk 2.4 mph on the treadmill. Everyone is different. I’ve met quite a few people who make my horror stories seem like fairy tales. I’m 60 and a league and tournament bowler. I have already set my mind that I won’t touch a bowling ball for six to eight months. Good luck to everyone and safe healing.

  42. Hi Ronny,
    Sorry to hear your having problems and just wanted you to know people are praying! I also wanted to say “Once a Marine always a Marine”. Semper Fi brother!

  43. Hi Mike & Ronny,
    I wanted you two to know that my uncle was a proud Marine in both the Korean and WWII wars. He just passed away last week. I miss him tremendously. He had such a hearty laugh and great way for making others feel comfortable.
    He once told me that if he had a cell phone, he’d have the Marine’s Hymn as his ringtone.
    He was always so tickled pink when I’d play the Marine’s Hymn for him on my flute.

  44. Sometimes it seems that, Sarah, my physical therapist is the Marine. I was happy to come across your website and I will definitely come often. Take care.

  45. I have a friend whose son is in the Marines, basic training (or whatever they call it) and she sent me a link to a video of his group/troup/battalion……..and told me to pick Mike out of the group of 83…….I could NOT….and I’ve known the kid for almost 9 years…….all those boys looked sooo much alike, so I told her I couldn’t tell which one he was….and she said, we can’t either! His own PARENTS can’t identify him…..I didn’t feel so bad then!

    This is entirely off topic, but Marine related….lol

  46. That’s awesome Marie, I would love to hear you play the Hymn! You got me thinking now, where can I find that ringtone???

    You may not remember me, I posted here several months ago. I was scheduled for a RTKR on June 10, but cancelled on the 6th. Since the middle of March I lost 50 pounds and although the damage to my knee is still there, it’s much easier to handle now. Well the 50 pounds and Synvisc One, that is 🙂

    My prayers are with all of you who have knee problems, mine are currently postponed, but I still lurk here on the list 🙂

    God bless and Semper Fi to all my brothers out there!

  47. They would boot me right out of camp….I could never stand there and let someone scream into my face, call me names, and not have a reaction….well, of course, my reaction would be to cry!

    I say, good for those boys if they make it all the way through, they will be better for it later in life….but I think that 99% of them don’t realize what they are getting in to…….makes them appreciate everything they had in life leading up to that day!!!!!!

  48. Hi again Debi,
    Marine Corps boot camp is all about learning disipline. Drill Instructors may use extreme methods, but they also get extreme results. The Marine Corps isn’t for everyone, maybe you have heard one of our slogans “The Few, The Proud, The Marines”.

    To your friends son I say work hard and listen to your DI’s, they know what they are doing. On graduation day you will become my brother.

    To your friend I say, hang in there. Your son has already made the best decision of his life. He has chosen to become a part of an organization that is rich in history and tradition. It will be a part of him until the day he dies. Be proud of him 🙂


  49. Good post. I learn something totally new and challenging
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