Patient Comments: Total Knee Replacement - Experience

Please describe your Total Knee Replacement experience.

Comment from: Bookgirl64, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 31

I had a right total knee replacement July 8, 2015. I only took hydrocodone for about a week, then nothing for pain. Day two after procedure, hospital physiotherapist made me walk up and down three stairs, and I did okay. I used a walker for about three weeks then switched to a cane. I am doing physiotherapy (PT) twice a week but doing the PT exercises on my own three times a day. I am getting there slowly. My knee still balloons up when I've been on my feet too long, but the upside is before my surgery I couldn't stand for three minutes without agonizing pain. Now I can stand for 20 or 30 minutes pain-free and hopefully longer. I will say my knee was very bad. The kneecap was cracked badly and chunks were falling off. One word of advice; take it easy on yourself. Everyone is different and heals differently. It took me seven weeks to realize that. I know that in the long run I will be better off for having it done. And trust me, I will be getting the other knee done as soon as this one is totally healed.

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Comment from: Shines, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: August 25

I had a right total knee replacement on June 30, 2015. I am now close to 8 weeks out. Probably the worst for me has been the lack of good rest. I have not had more than 3 hours of sleep a night total since operation. Pain medications don't work for me so just dealing with it now. I am pushing myself more every day to walk more, ride stationary bike more every day in addition to physiotherapy (PT) exercises. My PT has gone well and I have been told knee was way far ahead of most at same stage. However, the inability to be active for long of time is not my thing. I am a goer and doer and don't like being held back. I know this is temporary but if I could get good rest it would help immensely. I hope my other knee lasts a long time because it will be a long time before I will ever want to do this again!

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Comment from: larry, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: August 25

I had total knee replacement 8 1/2 weeks ago. Range of motion is very limited. I am doing exercises every day but progress is extremely slow. I feel as if I plateaued after 4 weeks and then stopped progressing. Very sharp pain in the knee cap prevents me from flexing as far as I think I should be able to, given all the work I have put in. It is depressing. Surgeon suggests a nerve block and then a forced flex to break up the scar tissue. I am not sure what to do. Oxycodone helps with general pain but not the sharp knee pain. After exercising, the knee is inflamed and feels as if a strap is being pulled tight around it.

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Comment from: GenieL, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: August 07

I am four weeks out from my knee replacement. From the moment I woke up after surgery, my knee hurt less than it did prior to surgery. My hospital holds something they call 'joint camp' for people having hip or knee replacement. One of the things they hammered home was to take the pain medication, because your physical therapy (PT) cannot progress if you hurt too much to do it. I used a cane prior to surgery due to post-stroke balance issues. I am transitioning off the walker this week back to my cane. This has not been as hard as I expected it to be, and has not hurt as much as I thought it would. I will have the other knee done next summer (I need a long time between anesthetics due to neurological issues) and I cannot wait! I find now that some of the PT exercises are difficult for me to do because of the non-operated knee.

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Comment from: RNwithpain, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: July 28

It was 2 weeks ago since I had my left knee replacement. I injured that knee over 40 years ago playing college basketball. I had no medical treatment then and kept playing. That also caused my right knee to have problems from overuse. I had 2 arthroscopic surgeries to my knee with the latest in 2/2013. I tried all types of injections, and physiotherapy at various times over the years. I'm still experiencing severe pain which has been very upsetting especially with other patients seeming to breeze through it. I went into surgery with an 18 year old's attitude instead of the reality of a 60 year old woman. In my experience this has been the most pain I ever recall. My caution to others is to assume you will have pain and have to do exercises in spite of it. Pain medications do cause constipation and can cause nausea.

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Comment from: mtnative, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: July 21

I had bilateral knee replacements 8 months ago. My knees were so bad that I could hardly go up and down stairs. One knee would not bend and the other could not straighten. So I was a wreck. I was in the hospital 2.5 days. At 45 I was the youngest patient. I was trying my best to get out of there, while others were trying to stay. Right away after surgery I knew the pain was much better. Sure, there was some surgical pain but the knee joint pain was gone. The knee replacement surgery was way easier and less painful than the ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) replacement surgeries I had. I went home on crutches for a couple days and then just cruised from there. Boy, it has improved my life 100 percent and I feel like I can now keep working until retirement. One small hiccup is one knee cap clicks and I still have a small amount of kneecap pain but I can deal with that.

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Total Knee Replacement - Candidate and Causes Question: What was the cause of you needing a total knee replacement?
Total Knee Replacement - Recovery Question: Please share your experience with recovery following a total knee replacement surgery.
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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