Hi, Welcome!

The community is a safe space for people living with and connected to arthritis to ask questions and share experiences. Get started by registering here and posting your first comment or question!

Sign In with a Versus Arthritis account

Advice on TKR please

Sars4185Sars4185 Posts: 34
edited 6. Feb 2017, 04:41 in Living with Arthritis archive
I have OA in my rt knee and the consultant has finally agreed for me have a TKR due to increased pain has greatly affected my quality of life . I am a bit apprehensive about the operation. What tips could people give me for post op recovery.


  • HelenbothkneesHelenbothknees Posts: 487
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Sara,
    I had a bilateral TKR (ie both knees) four and a half years ago, and I've never regretted it; it literally gave me back my life.
    Don't be apprehensive, though you will be of course; the op is OK.
    Post op...start doing the exercises they will give you as soon as possible. This is very important. You won't feel like it, but do it! You need to prevent scar tissue forming, as once it's there you can't get rid of it, and it will affect the amount of knee bend you get. I started the day of the op.
    Don't overdo the exercising though. You need to rest, and you need to use ice if your knee swells up. Listen to your body; it's hard, but you'll learn.
    Keep taking the painkillers to enable you to exercise.
    Come on here and ask any more questions you may have, as everyone's recovery is a bit different.
    So to summarise...exercise, rest, ice, painkillers, ask questions. That'll be a full time job for a short while. After that...but first things first...
    Oh, and don't believe the people who tell you your new knee won't feel like yours, and won't bend more than 90 degrees. All lies, at least in my case.
    Anything else you want to know?
    I wrote a diary-type book after mine, which is available as a Kindle ebook; pm me if you want details.
    Good luck!
  • stickywicketstickywicket Posts: 25,993 ✭✭✭
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I'd second that. I maintain that the two ways to 'ruin' a good TKR are to overdo things and to not do enough. As Helen says, do the exercises, rest, ice etc in the early weeks. Don't try to 'run before you can walk' but equally we do have to push through the pain barrier with the exercises. Listen carefully to your physio who will be your best guide for that.
    “There is always a well-known solution to every human problem - neat, plausible, and wrong.” H.L. Mencken
  • GraceBGraceB Posts: 1,598
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi, I had a partial knee replacement in 2009 (when I was 44); I'm just about to have a total knee replacement - other leg.

    I echo what the others have said. I'd also suggest that you prepare as much as you can at home.
    Get as much non-perishable shopping in as you can store, get housework done; the day before the op change your bed and clear any outstanding laundry.
    If you are not already internet shopping start - so that you get used to how it works - and can get shopping delivered.
    Organise your home so that everything you'll need is in easy to grab places.
    Pick up any rugs or mats - avoids slipping.
    Get a reasonable amount of cash out of the bank in case neighbours/friends pick bits of shopping up for you, magazines, papers, etc.
    Try and have a hair cut just before, and any other beauty treatments you usually have.
    Pre-cook and freeze meals so you have at least 2 weeks' worth ready in the freezer to just re-heat when needed.
    If you drive, fill the car with petrol so that when you do return to driving you don't have to worry about getting petrol.
    If the car is due for a service when you'll be in those first 6 weeks post-op time, get it done before.
    Invest in a flask-mug as you'll find moving around on crutches and carrying a cuppa almost impossible.

    If I can help in any other way please let me know. The hospital will guide you through the processes. Oh - don't listen to any "horror stories" - everyone is different and the "horror stories" tend to come from those who ignore their post-op instructions in my experience!

    Turn a negative into a positive!
  • HelenbothkneesHelenbothknees Posts: 487
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Sara, you didn't mention when you're to have the op. If, like most of us, you end up on a long waiting list, and you can be available at short notice if there's a cancellation, let them know that. I was told I'd have to wait five months, but there was a cancellation so I ended up going in three days after my pre-op check! I had a hectic couple of days trying to get things at home sorted out, but it worked out fine. And it meant I had no time to get worried, which was actually very good.
  • Sars4185Sars4185 Posts: 34
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you Helen, Grace and stickywicket, the advice was really good . I am on the waiting list so could be any time but will keep you posted. After the operation were you able to kneel? I am just hoping to be pain free ! Thanks for the advice
  • HelenbothkneesHelenbothknees Posts: 487
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I can kneel just fine now, though I seem to remember it was painful at first. But I know some people can't after a TKR. My yoga instructor was amazed that I could kneel for quite long periods with no problems. I'm not quite sure why, I don't know if it's anything I did, or just down to luck. But you will be pain free, which is what counts. I do get aches in my legs, especially if I walk a lot - and I mean several miles - but nothing like what I had before.
  • TrayguyTrayguy Posts: 38
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi, I had a TKR 13 weeks ago and am just beginning to think it was worth it.
    It is hard when it is first done, can't say I had terrible pain but I did take my medication regularly.
    It is all down to having patience as it does take a lot of rest, ice and a bit of excercise.
    I don't regret having it one bit as I am in very little pain with it now - infact I am about to get booked in for my other one to be done so it can't have been that bad.
  • Sars4185Sars4185 Posts: 34
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I am hoping to have my op next month . The waiting list in Worcestershire is 4-6 months and with the constant pain and no sleep we agreed to do it next month with medical insurance. I am quite apprehensive about the operation but my husband is relocating to USA in June so I really want him here when I have the operation. How long are people off work ? I am a nurse and on my feet all day so I don't want to run before I can walk .
  • barbara12barbara12 Posts: 20,899 ✭✭
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello Sara I am so pleased the other have given you lots of advice , I am an hip person and the info I got on this forum was brilliant..wishing you well with your op..and a speedy recovery...
  • HelenbothkneesHelenbothknees Posts: 487
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Sara,
    Next month; that's great news. I'm not sure about the going back to work. I'm a freelance writer working from home, so I just carried on almost immediately! But if you're on your feet all day I suspect you're thinking about something like 3 months off; I think I heard that somewhere. But I'm really not sure, and everyone is different, so hopefully you'll get some better answers soon.
Sign In or Register to comment.