three weeks after knee replacement: I think I'm doing... - NRAS


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three weeks after knee replacement

cathie profile image

I think I'm doing OK everyone. Had the stitches out on Monday and she was pleased with the healing which is good as I'm diabetic and they were worried about that. ANd I do notice that getting up from chairs is much easier already, as is doing the steps outside my front door. I've been trying to get up to walk on every hour so that I keep moving as well as the prescribed exercises which are going well.

However, partly the problem is other people. My physio is pushing me faster than I really want, asking me to do 1,000 steps a day which is a lot more than I've done for nearly two years! I've asked her to go more gently which she's responded to well, but says I must be brave and push myself a bit. In reply I sent her the NRAS info on Chronic fatigue in RA which emphasizes how little known this is as a problem. I think this is what is holding me back, including psychological factors and the cold and wet weather.

Any recipes you all may have for overcoming this sort of thing to get going again after a long period of inaction would be very helpful.. I'm trying to find a midway path between unrealistic demands and inaction!

Time to get up and walk around again.

20 Replies

Good news Cathy! Wonderful x

Only time for a quick response .

You know your body better than anyone else. I think that the 'pushing yourself' should be in tiny increments. And it's excellent that you get mobile every hour.

Don't feel bullied; that could become a counter-productive stress.


Jora profile image
Jora in reply to Jora

I meant to add Jo. xxx - but it went off without me.

Thanks jo. Just had some words of wisdom on phone from practice nurse. She says I'll have good and bad days. Off to look at the North Sea!

Slow on the days your too tired and quick on the days your not. The knee exercises are the most important

Knee exercises are going well. Today I've walked further than recently, more easily too. I can certainly tell the difference between he two

Good news, so pleased all going well.

1000 steps does seem excessive at 3 weeks plus. My physio was at pains to prevent me doing too much too soon, he said that could cause problems. As Sylvi said, it's the knee exercises that are most important.

I think you need to listen to your body, it's not as if you have a train to catch, slow and steady has been good for me. Hope you continue inthe right direction. M x

Thanks, M. I sent her that NRAS survey thing on chronic fatigue and she read it and was impressed. Next I'm going to work out a progressive schedule to pre-empt any more 1,000 steps! Just been looking at the North Sea - there were four swimmers in at lunchtime at Porty - none of them obviously wearing wet suits! Not for me that.

Hi Cathie so pleased to hear you are doing well. You sound very brave to me!! Good luck to you. Xxx

hi Cathie

great news that you feel more confident moving around it must feel good after such a long time. I did enjoy swimming in the sea but unable to now. those people must be thermal to swim without wetsuits this weather but I am a bit envious. sending lots of encouragement it really helps to get out and about.

well done you.

Glad you're doing so well, Cathie :) I also say listen to your body! Physios can be a bit gung-ho sometimes; I have been wary ever since the one who told me kneecaps COULDN'T dislocate, just before mine did, when I'd told her it felt like it would!

The phased programme to work your way up to 1000 steps sounds a v good idea. :) Happy healing!

Thanks everyone. I thought a few details plus and minus might help other people as well as getting me the encouragement I need!

After my knee replacement the male physio gave me an exercise sheet and added the reps he wanted me to do, the next day the female physio looked at it and sighed .. no much too many .. cut it down by half !! When I went for my outpatient appointment it was with the male physio !!! I thought I'm going to get into trouble here .. he actually is the Clinical Lead of the physio dept. and this time he listened to what I was saying, I told him that my brain is not talking to the muscle at the front of my thigh and it won't work and I'm very very worried. He hooked me up to a muscle sonar machine and booked me into the Knee Exercise Class, which has been great .. been twice now and a big improvement. The physios are people too !! and have off days ... I try to listen to my body and do what I can comfortably.

It's good to hear other experiences. Here (Edinburgh) there's follow up physio for people who aren't doing so well after post op appt. but I doubt I'll need it. Good to have itthough

Woodyblue profile image
Woodyblue in reply to cathie

It's nice to talk to others at the physio who have been or going through the same as ourselves, one guy in the class was pulling faces doing the bend exercise with the gym ball behind his back on the wall, what's wrong I asked, he said my knee makes a shocking noise when doing this, I said mine does as well, all sorts of crunching and cracking I suppose it's trying to settle ... O does it that's ok then I was getting a bit worried .. but if you are worried ask the physio.

My list of questions to ask the Consultant at my 6 week check up is getting longer and longer .. and then there is the other knee .. haha ..

Yes I've got another knee probably will be done around May. It's an odd feeling isn't it to have one leg good the other not!

Woodyblue profile image
Woodyblue in reply to cathie

My bad knee is now my good knee and visa versa. Athens consultant I'm sure said next knee wait one year .. Guy in physio waited 19 weeks for second replacement but different surgeon same hospital .. they all have their own thinking I suppose. It's very difficult to do the physio when the other knee is not strong, I don't feel confident it will hold me if operated knee can't keep up, so probably why I push myself a bit too much, which is daft as I just end up with two sore knees then.

Really glad it's gone so well Cathie. Gradual and steady is the best and definitely go with your body as others say. The important exercises at this point are the the bending, straightening and strengthening of the knee.

Moving about every hour is good for avoiding the possibility of a clot. That said they seem to stuff you so full of blood thinners you wonder how your blood will ever clot again.

Working on your stamina through walking can continue at a pace when you've settled from the op and you're not worried about a flare through over doing it.

So pleased you've had a good outcome. Jude

They just gave me aspirin for blood thinners as apparently the injection can cause bleeding into the wound which doesnt sound great!

I'm just back from the physio who has been so understanding and thoughtful and explained everything. She says there's a risk that the knee gets locked in a bent position so you have to straighten it and that makes the walking exercises so important. I'm so lucky to have a reliable (and cheap) physio who is prepared to listen. This has made such a difference throughout the process!

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Well done, Cathie. Sounds like you are doing very well. I know from friends and acquaintances who have had knee replacements that the rehab is a lot of hard work! they focused on improving the range of motion by tiny increments.

Keep up e good work. Cheers Doreen

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