Patient Comments: Total Knee Replacement - Recovery

Please share your experience with recovery following a total knee replacement surgery.

Comment from: Marcy, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: January 26

I had a total knee replacement on 4/1/15 and it was a great success. I was walking and climbing three stairs with a walker about two hours after the surgery. I only took opioid pain medication for about two days and assisted walking with walker or cane for about two weeks. I had five or six physical therapy visits post-surgery and reached full flexion and extension within three weeks. I attribute my great recovery to water walking before and after the surgery and I am still water walking at least three hours a week. At 9 months post-surgery, I am doing great. I have never really had any pain and the swelling was very minimal. I consider my knee replacement to be very successful.

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Comment from: maria527, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 21

I had total knee replacement surgery about 5 weeks ago and I'm so disappointed with my recovery that I cry every day. I can only straighten my knee to 4 degrees, but that is not what has me so stressed out. My greatest disappointment is that my range of motion (ROM) is only 85 degrees and when I am bent to that degree I am in the most excruciating pain. In most of the posts I have read on different sites, many patients have stated that they have their ROM of 115 in just a few weeks. My surgeon insists that I am not working hard enough, but believe me I am working to the best of my ability, but the pain is unbearable.

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Comment from: Steve, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: January 20

I underwent a total knee replacement on the 13th of November 2015. I had been suffering advanced osteoarthritis for many years and had been putting off the surgery for as long as possible. The surgery has been an outstanding success. I was reasonably fit leading up to the surgery and was a regular road cyclist and as a result I have relatively strong leg muscles. I have been back riding for the past three weeks although I am only averaging 25 to 30 kilometers per ride and am riding about three times per week. This will be increase as my endurance returns. I am in no pain at all and have a range of movement from 0 to 125 degrees. I have some slight swelling occasionally after some rides but that is easily managed by applying an ice pack. I am still attending outpatient physiotherapy twice a week (three hour sessions) and I could not be happier with the result.

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Comment from: Carlos, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: January 20

I replaced right knee on 11/23/15 after replacing left knee on 7/14/14. Latest replacement went much easier than first. I returned to work after two weeks with the first despite lots of pain but this time took off for three weeks. But it was much easier this time with mucho less pain. I quit the opioid pain killers after four weeks. By six weeks flex was up to 120 degrees. Physiotherapy began at home then moved to clinic for five weeks, ending 1/21/16. I credit the difference between the two in terms of pain to a change in procedure. Now the medical team used ultra sound to find the nerves around my knee then injected pain killer all around the knee at the time of surgery. For the first three days I was entirely pain free; incredible. The pain kicked in after that but much less than the first time. This was not done with the first knee. My doctor began this procedure two months after my first knee replacement. I'm taking six months to recover before mounting a horse and a year before returning to snowboarding. I hope everything holds together.

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Comment from: kayc, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: January 14

I had total knee replacement on my right knee and after the surgery my doctor came into my room and said he cracked my tibia as he was sawing the bone. I could not put any weight on my right knee for 10 weeks, now I am starting physical therapy and it's very painful. I do the therapy but I think because I could not walk it's twice as painful. I did exercise at home but they were all sitting down or lying down. I don't think I will ever get the other knee done.

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Comment from: PJB41, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: January 12

I am 4 months post total knee replacement surgery for right knee and it is such a relief. Prior to surgery I could ride a bicycle but I could not walk far and I could not walk uphill at all. Prior to surgery walking through an airport was awful, I was always looking for a golf cart. Three months post-surgery we went on a family vacation and when we were walking through the airport I said to my wife, this is life changing. I go to physiotherapy 2 times a week and I exercise at my gym on my own as well. Today I took a 45 minute spin class and rode 15 miles. Two nights ago a walked 1 mile pain free. I wish I had done it sooner. Tomorrow I will play tennis. I am back in the game!

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Comment from: Becca, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: January 11

I am 6 and half months out from bilateral knee replacement. I did rehabilitation, physiotherapy (PT) at home and then PT at the local hospital. I can bend my left knee to 120 degrees and my right to 122 degrees. I have 0 degrees on full extension on my right leg but struggle getting it on my left. Both knees were bad but the left was worse. I still feel tightness in my quadriceps and feel still somewhat awkward when walking.

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Patient Comments

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Total Knee Replacement - Experience Question: Please describe your Total Knee Replacement experience.
Total Knee Replacement - Candidate and Causes Question: What was the cause of you needing a total knee replacement?
Total Knee Replacement - Exercises and Physical-Therapy Question: Please share your experience with exercises and physical-therapy following a total knee replacement surgery.

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