Post-operative pain and Elevation?

So I am six days from surgery and still basically immobile.  I was told that for the first week I should keep the leg elevated 20 out of 24 hours to reduce pain and swelling.  What I am finidng is that 20 hours isn’t enough.  Every time I get on the crutches, even for the ferw seconds it takes to go to the bathroom, blood rushes to my lower leg and starts to hurt like crazy.  The pain is even worse for ten minutes after I get back to the couch.  Ywsterday, a nurse suggeted that I not elevate the leg over heart, but just to hip level and lower it incrementally before getting up.  This has not helped at all.  Has anyone else experienced this?  I was kinda counting on being able to move around a little bit this week, and maybe even make it into the office, but if my leg has to be up at all times, I am not sure how this is possible.   Oh, the painkillers (Norco) don’t help at all with this kind of situational pain.  Any advice or reassurance would be most helpful.

One Response to “Post-operative pain and Elevation?”

  1. Qualitatively, your experience is typical, but quantitatively it’s a bit on the extreme side, certainly compared to my experience with both of my ATRs.

    Does it help if you keep your knee bent while you’re on the crutches? Some people here have had relief from the other elements of RICE, including ice and compression. Of course, if you’re in a cast, both of those are tricky or impossible. I spent a lot of time kneeling on my “bad” knee, e.g., when brushing my teeth or washing dishes. Is that position excruciating for you, too?

    I know I moaned a lot and stayed in bed a lot 8 years ago when I got the operation (and I peed into a jug beside the bed, too, for several days!). Skipped all that this time when I skipped the operation, excuse the smugness. I’ve still been elevating a lot, and only really phased out completely, more or less, quite recently, near the 6-MONTH mark. (See my blog entitled “Swelling (& elevating) is getting OLD!”)

    No other suggestions here. I would have suggested what your nurse suggested, which didn’t help. With luck, it will ease up soon. If not, have them look at your leg. Is it invisible to you, in a cast?

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