When Should You Go Off Pain Medication after TKR?

I’ve had quite a few surgeries to date. Generally, when I go home, I go off all pain medications straight away. I did the same with the total knee replacement (TKR) I had in January. But turns out, that’s not the way they do it! Shortly after being free and clear of the pain medication, I was told by the physical therapists that I needed to stay on the medication for the therapy to work. I was like, “Huh? You’ve got to be kidding me!”

I got with the program and went back on my medication as suggested. I then went off it a few more times just to be told it was premature and that I needed to go back on the medication. They had put me on oxycodone and hydrocodone and that stuff is just not to be played with! It’s highly addictive and just the type of opioid medication that has lead many to become addicts, even though that clearly was not their intention, at the outset. I was leery! But I got through it! I wish someone had explained this part of the process to me, in advance.

Clearly my modus operandi, of getting off pain medications ASAP, did not work in this arena. I too had to learn to be more patient. I had to go against what I thought was the best practice. In essence, I had to learn a new trick, and learn I did.

I hope you too are not too rigid to learn new things, when life necessitates it. I hope I remember this lesson, when I face total knee replacement 2 head on!

All my best!

Lisa J Lafave, PhD, MBA, ACC, BCC
CEO & Founder of Coaching Rocks, LLC
The Wellness Coach form Building Better Bodies Rocks
A Single Mom By Choice Raising Surrogacy Twin Boys
Written in My Little Brick in University Heights, Ohio

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Total Knee Replacement – What a Trip!

It’s been 9 weeks since my surgery and I am beginning to sense that my new knee is my good knee! It used to be that my left knee was my good knee and my right was my bad knee, so don’t you know it that I replaced the right knee. Just after 2 months out, my new knee is becoming my “good knee” and my formerly good knee is becoming my “bad knee.” Crazy huh? Well that is rapid recovery after total knee replacement (TKR). They call TKR a super surgery! I had physical therapy the day of my surgery. You heard that right! The same day I had surgery, they had me up and walking and the next day they had me walking up and down stairs! It was truly remarkable.

There was plenty of icing too! The swelling was just what you’d imagine! The fact that he swelling takes 3 – 6 months to resolve itself was the true surprise! Consequently, the icing continued well after the 4 days in the hospital. Indeed the icing continued for weeks with concomitant nose of above toes 3 times a day for 20 minutes a pop! Having someone to drag the ice to me and prop me up was key in my recovery!

I had a few weeks of in home physical therapy and then had someone drive me to therapy for a few weeks, until I could drive on my own.

All of the therapy basically hurts. They hurt you to help you along. Trust me it’s not for the faint of heart! But it is doable! The more you push the flexion and extension, the greater the range of movement you’ll have in the end. At first, it doesn’t feel like anything is going to budge. You are just stuck at a plateau and seems like you’ve ruined yourself! Then all of a sudden your efforts pay off and you get movement! You move forward a little, and then a little more, and then even a little more! Altogether it makes a big difference. I will never forget when I could finally bend my leg in bed with my knee up and my foot flat. That was a moment. Never felt quite so satisfied with a simple positional difference in bed.

I’ll tell you I really didn’t sleep well until around the 8th week. I just couldn’t figure out what to do with my legs. It was rough! But I got through it!

Have you been putting off a surgery? What stops you dead in your tracks every time you think of the surgery? Is there anyone you need to consult? Remember the decision is yours! Just be sure it’s an informed decision! Do you have a trusted partner or friend who you might be able to confide in to discuss this topic and help you move forward in your process? If not, maybe you can discuss it with someone who had the surgery who might be able to share some insights that you might not be privie to. Just remember try not to be an island! Bouncing ideas off others often helps you to make good decisions!

All my best!

Lisa J Lafave, PhD, MBA, ACC, BCC
CEO & Founder of Coaching Rocks, LLC
The Wellness Coach form Building Better Bodies Rocks
A Single Mom By Choice Raising Surrogacy Twin Boys
Written in My Little Brick in University Heights, Ohio

Leap Into Action!

How Do You Climb Back On After Falling Of the Wagon?

I had total knee replacement 9 weeks ago, and engaged in numerous indulgences during the last 10 weeks. I realized there was no way around staying on my restrictive diet while in the hospital, but had no intention in doing what I’ve done. It’s been an all out free fall. I have been eating whatever I want without a care in the world and have gained back a significant amount of the 30 pounds I had lost during the last 5 months.

So here I go again. I need to pick up the pieces and begin to eat with dignity once again. I guess I have been horribly disappointed being someone who can’t be on the detox diet owing to kidney stones. Did I mention I had three over the Christmas holiday? So I’ve come to grips with having to supplement fruits, vegetables, protein and fats with grains and legumes. In short, although I can and probably should be on a dairy free diet, Testing shows I have no gluten sensitivity and therefore likely do not need to follow a gluten free diet. Due to my history of kidney stones, I need to eat less animal protein and probably need to consume legumes and grains as an alternate source of a complete protein.

What I need to concentrate on is reducing empty calories and processed foods. The question is how can this be accomplished? I have to go back to Joshua Rosenthal’s concept of “crowding out.” It seems old favorites, like a small handful of nuts, baked beets or baked brussel sprouts with ghee or coconut oil, salads with lettuce, tomatoes and cucumbers, get seemingly forgotten amidst lasagne, submarine sandwiches, BBQ wings, pizza, hamburgers and hot dogs, chips and dip, cakes, cookies, candy and ice cream. Crowding out with more fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains causes you to have less space for foods that are devoid of micro and macro nutrients.

Today I had a salad at lunch along with a fake pizza made with a pice of pita bread, pizza sauce, cheese and salami. The fake pizza was only moderately good. The salad was delicious! Maybe tomorrow I can skip the fake stuff and concentrate on a satisfying salad! I could easily compliment that with a lovely bowl of Madras lentils and end of feeling nourished and full. I think that’s a great plan for tomorrow!

So how about you? How has your eating regimen been going lately? Are you on track? Do you need to straighten up your house a bit? Where will you start? What can you add in that is nutritious and satisfying? Can you think of one meal that would fill that bill that could become a go to meal? How about a menu for a whole day that sticks to your pre-determined standards as to what qualifies as eating well in your eyes.

Did you know that most people stick to about 8 different dinners and then repeat those over and over again. If you could think of 8 lunches and 8 dinners that are healthy according to you and then rotate those you just might be in good stead. Some breakfast seems to be a bit more formulaic for most folks, but you don’t have to be limited. Seems eating well could just come down to developing some basic good habits and several good recipes and then sticking to those. Certainly feel free to being more diverse than these 16 meals. You know what they say. Variety is the spice of life. When it comes to getting all your nutrients a diverse palette is king, so let your creativity take you away. Rely on those 16 menus as old standbys, but feel free to switch it up and try to eat clean while you’re at it!

Why not interview 3 freinds and see what meals they rely on. This might give you a few new ideas. If you aren’t quite that social, check out some cook books or recipes online and see what appeals. Why not attempt to incorporate two new meals this week?

So simple actions like returning to eating old favorites from a clean eating phase of your life will help you to get back to basics and begin your new journey of eating in a manner you find acceptable! Clearing out your pantry of foods that don’t belong there to begin with, may be another activity that will help you get back on track. Doing a bit of research to develop some new menus that are approved by you might also prove helpful. Can you think of any other activities that might help you get back in your own good graces?

You might choose a few weekly activities to pair with your eating regimen that might support developing a healthier lifestyle. Maybe a walk in the woods, or a swim in the lake or a bike ride or perhaps a walk around the block with a friend or loved one. It might be a game of hoops, or a bit of yoga alone or in a group. Lots of people are wearing fitbits these days to track their daily steps. Whatever form of movement compels you the most is the one to go with!

I look forward to connecting with you again in the future!

Lisa J Lafave, PhD, MBA, ACC, BCC
CEO & Founder of Coaching Rocks, LLC
The Wellness Coach form Building Better Bodies Rocks
A Single Mom By Choice Raising Surrogacy Twin Boys
Written in My Little Brick in University Heights, Ohio

Leap Into Action!