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One Year Post TKR Update

It has been one year already since my total knee replacement surgery. I had my follow-up appointment that was informative. The results were positive, mixed, and of concern.

. On the positive side, my x-rays looked perfect. My implant is properly placed, secure, and of no concern whatsoever. Nice. Good job by my surgeon. He rocks!

Scar. Scar looks healthy with no complications at all. Another nice. I was not expecting any problem anyways in this area. I have an attractive looking scar. And, no, I don’t try to hide it. 🙂

Movement. My implant moved fine when slightly manipulated by the doctor. All the doctor did is move my knee gently back and forth, and from side to side. The minimal clicking is “normal”. Nice.

No complications. There are no complications from the tkr. No infection nor side effects to speak of. Again, I was not expecting any concerns in this area. Overall, I have very good health and take pride in that.

Stairs. I can go up stairs like an average person. This was impossible prior to surgery.

Walking. I can enjoy walking again without pain nor needing crutches.

Walking aides. I do not need any walking aides anymore. I did prior to surgery.

. My flexibility is around 100. It may never increase due to prior scar tissue from a trauma injury sustained 33 years ago. My femur fracture and subsequent surgery (original reason for knee problems) has old scar tissue that inhibits my movement. Bummer.

Knee appearance. My tkr knee is still swollen, more so after exercise or standing for a while. That will be around for some time. I was told my tkr knee will never look like my healthy knee. Oh well. That’s life.

Shoe lift. I need to wear a shoe lift due to leg length differences. Prior to my tkr, I wore a shoe lift for 30+ years. The amount has decreased by 1/2” since my total knee replacement, though. Various reasons. This aspect is being viewed as ‘mixed’ since I was hoping I didn’t have to wear a shoe lift anymore. However, since it’ll result in my body being aligned properly – I am not griping. It’s surprising to me how it took a year to reveal itself, though. Come to think of it, it was revealing itself through my
opposite side hip and knee pain.

Of concern:
Stairs. Stairs will be difficult to go down due to decreased flexibility and a shoe lift. Bummer.

Flexibility. Even though my tkr knee may eventually have more flexibility, it may not. It is much better than before my total knee replacement surgery, though. Much better.

Dressing. It is not fun getting dressed. I haven’t mentioned this before since I forgot about it. Putting on pants is a bite. Could be worse, though.

Nerve damage. This can be a biggie, especially when trying to sleep. It is not consistent throughout the day, luckily. I have blog posted about this previously. It is not going to get any better unless I want to have surgery done on it. I will not do that. I refuse to have anymore surgery. I have found that massaging my leg along the nerve line does help, if only temporarily. Icing helps, also. Yoga movements also help some. The way I look at it…I’ve lived with pain for the past 30+ years, why stop now? 😕 Could be worse.

Overall….I have no regrets AT ALL for having my total knee replacement surgery. The recuperation is difficult and time consuming, but that’s life.


7 Responses

  1. hey booktoots, CONGRATULATIONS!!! Sounds like you made out pretty well overall. All you can hope for on any surgery is that you come out of it a little better. I think you did that. Well done! Great attitude you have through all this. How do you pass that along to all the other tkr bloggers out there? I feel so bad for the new ones just going through their first months. But with blogs from the veterans like you they will get through it. Thank you for doing this. Keep up the good work, it almost always pay off! take care.

  2. Wow! What a blessing to receive such a good report from the doc. I enjoy reading your blog because you have such a positive attitude and you don’t give up. I’ve heard massaging is good to keep the blood flowing in the area as well as helping to soften scar tissue.

    Keep up the good work. By this time next year, you will have progressed even further.

  3. Congrats on getting to your one year anniversary! I had left knee tkr surgery Aug. 1 2008 and feel it is getting worse lately. From the start I had no problem with flexibility. It was 135 at 5 months post op, but it is hot and swollen almost all day. I wake up and it feels pretty good but a small amount of walking make it start hurting. I think there is something wrong. It makes a noise when I bend and straighten and my varicose veins seem to be bulging out much more than before surgery. X-Rays are fine they say. I am always guarding it against swelling and have way less function of the leg than before surg. I was on coumadin for a month after surg. Trouble started after I went off it. Any helpful comments would be welcomed.

  4. “Happy Birthday to Knee…Happy Birthday to Knee”…….mine is one year old today!

    I saw my dr a couple of weeks ago he said it was fine etc…..but it seems like ever since that day, I have had swelling and/or pain! I’m blaming it on the weather at this point. I am being more dedicated to my exercises right now although I had really slacked off for awhile!

    I’m still able to work an 8 hour day without taking a lunch or sitting down….but am tired and ready to collapse when I get home! After about an hour I feel better…..

    We are decorating for Christmas already because I am pacing myself…but I want to put out everything this year, since I didn’t get to last year and I was so depressed throughout the holidays…..I want to enjoy them this year!

    That’s it……I survived!

    Whew…..it was touch and go for a few months though!

  5. @ Debi…CONGRATULATIONS!! Happy BD to your knee. 🙂 Great update, also. Thanks for sharing.
    I know what you mean about the touch and go. We all do, who have been through a tkr. 🙂
    I’m looking forward to this holiday season, also. It’s nice to have more energy to do things. 🙂

  6. I too did well at my Dr’s appointment. Took x-rays of both knees, manipulated them both, said I was doing great. Can bend my left more than my right(was the opposite before surgery). Right 132/left 135 after diligent exercise after surgery. I think I freaked my Dr out when I squatted low. He said I didn’t have to go that far– I said if I want sit on a lounge chair, I do. Booktoots, do you still do maintenance exercises?

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