Prior to having a total knee replacement, some hospitals offer a pre-op tkr class. Potential patients see the actual knee implant, learn about pre-surgery preparation, and have questions answered. Mine was a good class.
However, there is no preparation for the – at times – frustrating, lengthy recuperation process after a total knee replacement surgery. I was told my knee would be swollen for 2-3 months. So, I didn’t give it much thought about all that recuperation entails. I just knew I’d have to keep doing exercises to increase my knee’s flexibility.
It’s been 7.5 months since my tkr, and the last couple of days have not been fun. I know it could be much worse. However, sometimes my knee is painful just from walking. It is more swollen at times, more than usual. My balance is easily off. My lower back is painful. Going down stairs seems to be more difficult. Other times I can lift my leg higher to have more “bounce” in my downstairs journey. Not the past couple of days. In other words….it’s discouraging.
All I was doing earlier today is walking around the enclosed shopping mall. How hard can that be? Well, it seemed to be. And, I’ll still ride my exercise bike in a few.
I don’t like to complain because I’m grateful for having the surgery. I just don’t understand why the recuperation process is so time consuming. I can see if I didn’t do any exercises and just layed around having others waiting on me. However, I don’t do that. I exercise regularly.
I believe there needs to be a better preparation process for the new tkr patient to prepare us for recuperation.