5 months and still swelling and pain when walking.

Posted , 9 users are following.

 I am at the 5 month stage, have been doing all the usual exercises and have achieved a good ROM early on in my recovery, as a result. The physio pushed me hard often to the point of considerable pain in order to achieve a good bend early on.  However I have never been without pain, particularly when standing / walking. Surgeon says X-ray looks good and that it's still healing. Now have just been told to rest up for 2 weeks and just ice / stretch as possibly have been doing too much. ( but never managed to walk more than 15 mins without pain.)  it's so frustrating, and worrying.. Has anyone else experienced similar at this stage? 

I was a fit and active 61 year old, and used to walk / gym etc.. Feels like my life is on hold, i try to stay positive in the hope that it will improve! 

Kate 

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15 Replies

  • Posted

    Sounds like rest will be good. The body tells you when enough is enough. Sometimes therapists are more interested in numbers than the individual. I'm in the US and I know they have to justify their work to insurance companies a 42nd the only way they can do it is with progress reports. If you aren't continuing to improve every month they can't continue but that's no excuse to hurt someone or set them back in the rehab process.
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  • Posted

    Hi Catherine

    I am the same, but unfortunately without a straight leg (even after a manipulation in March).  My second knee has always been painful right from waking up in recovery, but has been worse since the manipulation.  My recent x-Ray has confirmed that the knee itself is perfectly aligned, but my consultant thinks that I may have excess scar tissue.  I'm back to walking with a stick again and cannot do anything 'normal' apart from driving.  My consultant thinks that he will need to re-open my knee at the year stage, in Sept.

    I hope that you manage to be pain-free soon...it's very wearing, isn't it!

    patsy

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  • Posted

    Hi Catherine im 57 had op 5.3.15 im pretty good after it 90 bend up stairs ok downstairs not soo good but im seeing physio for first time next week cos of my walking and its not pain its that tight band that strangles ur knee into submission and makes walking difficult??? My GP said its scar tissue that needs freeing????? Could yours be similar??? Someone on the site yest mentioned acupuncture maybe this might be worth trying???
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  • Posted

    I'm 56 and had patellafemoral arthroplasty (new plastic knee cap and metal trochlea, the bit behind it) on 24 March this year. That's now 12 weeks ago today and blimey am I fed up. Knee heeled well, I can straighten it completely and have 108° bend. However it is so stiff/tight on walking and I'm told the muscles have wasted because I waited 11 years for the op (considered too young to have op before) and wore a knee support for all that time, hence this support did the job the muscles should have done. Consultant has twice told me all this stiffness is "normal" and it will just take time. I can cope with most things but this is beginning to wear me down. I seem to be in a vicious circle of pain, night sweats (had these before op due to being menopausal, but they're 10 times worse now and you begin to wonder if you're ctually running a fever and is this coming from knee site) and I also have fibromyalgia. What a combination! Am still on meds (now 2 nurofen, 3 x per day), still exercising, resting, elevating and icing. Seems like my time is taken up every day with this routine, which I wouldn't mind if I could see the slightest improvement.

    I'm with Catherine on this, your life is on hold. I particularly hate the night hours, I do initially get to sleep but then night sweats take over, knee is stiff and the thoughts going through my mind reduce me to tears. Its scarey but I'm not going to let it beat me. Every morning when I'm feeling really sorry for myself I read the posts on this forum and realise I'm not alone. I'm presuming none of us have ever met each other so its so uplifting to know we are not alone going through this nightmare. Bring it on lol!

    Thanks for letting me get this off my chest!

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    • Posted

      Hi pam

      i am sure it will improve in time! I never expected mine to be taking so long as I was fit to start with ! My knees went because I was a long distance runner and used to being active. 5 months of sitting around waiting for improvements is driving me crazy too. We have to stay strong and positive and believe it will get right in the end! Has anyone heard the idea that at 6 months it's 90% as good as it gets? If so I haven't got long!!!! 

      Catherine 

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    • Posted

      We all travel somewhat the same road unfortunately yours seems to be the part filled with potholders and boulders. Net rd take longer than any other part of this proceedure to heal. As long as other areas of soft tissue are healing the nerves are still sitting to one side whining. I understand about the muscle atrophy. You have probably been bored with my posts but I had to have the prosthesis removed 3 months/2weeks ago today due to staph. A plastic spacer full of antibiotics was inserted and a hip to ankle immobilizer put on for daytime wear. Until last week I was allowed only 40° bend and 50% weight. I can now put full weight and have 60° bend. My leg is a full 20% thinner than the good one and I walk like a new born calf without the immobilizer. A week from Thursday I get my 3rd prosthesis and have been told with diligent effort, and more work than I've ever done with the other 4 rehabs, I'll be 6 months before I can expect to be off the cane and somewhat ready for the world. I'm looking at a year but what the he'll, I've been fighting it for 12 1/× so what's another one. I used to be very impatient and probably demanding but life has seen fit to bring me down a couple of pegs. My wife has advanced Parkinson's and every once in awhile she reminds me I have a chance to get better, she will only get worse with no hope. Consequently, I Keep my complaints to myself.
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    • Posted

      Six months, heck I've another three to go yet then lol! Work are going to be so pleased - not. I do a secretarial job, that in the last few years I've moaned about. I won't be moaning again, I'd so like to be back there with the other girls. I'm also not driving yet so have to rely on my hubby/family/friends to take me out and about. Independence - something else I won't ever take for granted again. This sure does make you re-evaluate your life.

      So just done 10 gentle minutes on exercise bike, now sitting with my bag of frozen peas on knee watching tennis at Queens. Wimbledon here I come......watching naturally. Nadal is playing and was complaining earlier about his knees - welcome to our world ......wonder if his physio would take us on!! 

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  • Posted

    All I can say Kate is that it does get better. When I had my TKR 3 years ago they said it would be about a year before you really start feeling the benefits so you have a while to go yet. Sorry but it is better to know the truth isn't it?

    Take care and keep in touch

    Praying for you

    Love Sarah xxx

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    • Posted

      Sorry it is so long ago I really can't remember. I think I was originally told that what I don't get out of it in the first 6 weeks I am not going to get.

      They may have just sasaid that to spur me on.

      Sarah

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    • Posted

      That's borderline malpractice. Anyone that says that must have slept through a couple of courses in school........One of those, common sense. If y hat we're actually the case these folks who tell us they didn't e en get to see a therapist for month to 6 weeks would be lost. Personally, I've seen progress up to 6 months or better and strengthening be yond that. I think some of the therapist spend too much time making up stories
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    • Posted

      Everything changed for me at 6 months. I'm at 7 months now. My knee stopped hurting - well, most of the time, my mood improved, I started walking faster and well, and got enthusiasm back in my life.

      I don't walk far because of the other knee, and now when I go up and downstairs I do one at a time, but it is the tkr knee that does all the work. The tkr knee is much stronger, though every once in a while - maybe once/week - it wobbles for no apparent reason.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the advice, yes I've heard about the year mark too for a full recovery. That's all fine as long as it does improve.... The problem is that when it doesn't go as you are expecting it to, you imagine something must be wrong!! 

      Interestingly, since I have been resting and icing ,minimum walking or exercises for 2 weeks , as instructed by consultant, ...( am at the 5 month mark,)  the pain levels have dropped, phew! However I am still left with that cement in the knee feeling and soreness. This recovery is such a marathon event isn't it?! 

      Does anyone else have the cement block in the knee feeling. Is it scar tissue or just swelling? 

      Kate 

       

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  • Posted

    It does get better my left knee says so! done 8 years ago not a problem since....but my right knee... 15 weeks po on Thursday, still not quite straight though walking is fine. Going up and down stairs is good.  No pain, no tablets  its just the sleeping which is my real problem.    Life does go on hold, missing all my clubs meeting up with friends etc but will get there in time.

    Stay positive Catherine, we are all in the same boat.

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