22 weeks post op TKR

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Hi

I am 22 weeks post op and my physio says I have a very good bend 120 or so but I still feel as if I am not getting any further on....I don't see any improvement; I can walk with no pain but still get the tightness, especially when standing for five minutes or so, and still get the stiffness......and after cycling on the stationary bike for ten minutes, my knee is like a block of heavy wood. In bed when I turn over it is so so heavy. I can get upstairs but not happy doing a step down...

I get up in the morning and think "today I will see a change" but it's the same drudge every day....

My physio said I need to build up the muscles but for how long? 

Does anyone else feel like this or is it just me....I don't see my surgeon until September (first appt in year).....

Any info would be good.

 

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  • Posted

    Hate to say this, but you still have a ways to go.  You have to change your way of thinking.  Yes, you have to concentrate on your bend but, you also have to strengthen your quad muscles, this you can do anywhere, laying in bed before you get up in the morning is a good time, then as you get up see if you can sit on the side of your bed and try and bend it.  There are many ways to exercise.  If your leg hurts after 10 minutes, next time on a lighter setting for 9 minutes and do it slowly, you are not in a race.  The tightness comes from muscles and ligaments complaining.You ask about how long, that is up to you.  Work on those muscles, but don't kill them with impatience. Patience has to become your new best friend, think of ways to exercise, perhaps more when you are "resting"/"relaxed". anything can be used; doesn't have to be weights.  You are doing fine, change the way you exercise, then as you see improvements, congratulate yourself.  It can be a slog, but you have had serious surgery, you will get there.

     

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  • Posted

    Totally agree with sueisobel, exercise and more exercise but slowly does it, I'm at the exact same place as you though my bend not as good as yours. Ditch the numbers and concentrate on slowly but surely building up those muscles. That's what I'm trying at the moment
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  • Posted

    @120 you may not get much more not even need a lot more. Often times recovery depends on how long you had been favoring the leg and how badly the soft tissue has deteriorated. Generally speaking, most Dr's and therapists give you up to a year before the knee I s really part of you. I've been through complete rehab 5 times and each time its different. After my last go round (cleaning up a staph) my Dr says I could be 2 yrs. You will hit plateaus that make you feel like you are going backwards and suddenly you are making progress again. Just don't quit trying.
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    • Posted

      Dear OFG

      Still here for me again. I have posted before when in the depths of despair and pain....😞  but your words again are very wise. In the beginning I worked too hard and suffered for it so maybe I have been "too soft" with my leg since then but then it is so hard to gauge how much when you are left to your own devices with no daily physio person to help.

      I will do my best and be patient x

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  • Posted

    Hi Elaine,

    I'm Elaine from the States-Michigan.

    While I don't have any info for you, i am only 13 weeks, that was a great question and the answer was great, too. i have the same issues.

    I had no idea how long the commitment to exercizing was going to be. A year? Arghhhh. I had my other knee done 7 weeks ago and I feel like I bit off more than I wanted to chew.

    Good luck to you and we'll just keep on...

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    • Posted

      Nearly everyone v will tell you the 2 different knees are akin to 2 different people. They just don't heal the same even if its the same surgeon etc. Even people who have bi lateral (both done at the same time) say the healing isnt the same.
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    • Posted

      Hi Elaine

      I am in England and as you say no one informs you of all the hard work and endurance. My surgeon was very nice and said it was painful but no mention of depression and hard work for a year or so!

      My other knee will need doing but I will not rush into it just yet. I think you are very brave having the other done this early. 

      Hope your recovery is uneventful and speedy! X

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  • Posted

    Hi Elaine

    I'm nearly 13 weeks post op.

    My bend and extension are both very good and I'm pleased enough with them.  I can do stairs both ways - going down hurts like hell but I can do it.

    Hardly any limp at all unless I overdo it then 'log leg' kicks in! But what is not going is, like you, the stiffness and pain when you sit or stand for any length of time.

    I am a total junky too. Not taking as many as at the start but still taking them more than I would have anticipated. Take a cocktail of drugs to keep going, mostly codeine, as a last resort Tradol/Tramadol.  Read an article on the bad side effects of taking large amounts of ibuprofen so stopped taking them a few days ago.

    Exercise wise I totally overdid it at first 'no pain no gain' but with this op it just doesnt work like that, definitely not for me anyway. Went gently at it and started to improve.  You dont see an improvement day by day, its after a week or so you realise that the bend/extension is a little better.

    Only when you find this forum do you realise that its a long road that most of us are on.

    Using this forum and the amazing people that come on to try and help has been my saviour.

    Key word appears to be 'patience'

    Best wishes

    Ann

    The Irish One!

     

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    • Posted

      Hi Ann

      Yes, thank goodness we have this forum as TKR people understand the process. When talking to friends and colleagues they just ask "Is your knee better now? ". They mean well but you start to think don't you?

      The replies on here have all been very helpful, and I will try to not overdo the cycling. Let's hope our log leg will one day become 'ply wood' pliable! 😀 X

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  • Posted

    I had TKR 4 years ago. It is a long hard road to recovery. I was told it would be about a year before I really began to feel the benefit and I think that was about right.

    Don't give up, keep going with the exercises. Swimming is really helpful.

    Take care and keep in touch

    Sarah

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    • Posted

      Thanks Sarah

      I have been to the swimming pool although I can't do the breast stroke anymore as my knee doesn't like it and my physio now advised against it,

      so just do the exercises as I can't do forward crawl....

      Someone else has said it takes about a year or more...will have to be patient I suppose and get on with it  x

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  • Posted

    I am at 11 weeks. I was at 128 deg of flexion at 6 weeks and so was released from PT after just three sessions.  Since then, I do not worry about the numbers but only about slow steady progress.  Every day I am doing stationary bike at slightly increased tension for 12 minutes, then stretching and squatting, etc.  Also sitting with leg extended with a 5 pound weight hanging from the leg above the scar, for 5 minutes, to help with extension.  Still get some "thunder and lightening" and so I am contuing with the pain meds (Tramadol and Tylenol or Aleve), when heeded.  

    After coming here I realized it will be a long long road to full recovery so relax and do the little things to keep making incremental progress.  It will work!

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    • Posted

      You are doing fantastic but, like you said, it just takes time for a complete rehab. You are very wise to stay with the meds. Continue the excercise but don't push too far too fast or you might hit the wall and then frustration sets in. Go slow and steady getting plenty of rest along the way.
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