7 days post TKR and still can't bend it ☹☹

Posted , 18 users are following.

Hello there,

I'm now 7 days post surgery and can still only bend to 75 degrees. I was discharged at 4 days with very little Physio input as my pain was not under control during my stay. In fact, the pain was horrendous and I am now home with morphene. However, I am really encouraged today by how much the pain has rapidly improved over the last 24 hours and I am now able to straighten well, weight bare and walk with just a stick (I was discharged 3 days ago in a wheelchair).

I am, however, terrified by the slow progress I have made with bending. I am concerned that I may never get there. The knee itself no longer hurts when I bend, but the muscles above and to the side seems to be locked. Thebknee itselfnis swollen and feels tight. I am only 37 and otherwise fit and active. I'm so scared that I may never recover as I have read and been told by many disappointed nurses that this stage of recovery is extremely important. I feel tired, worried and a failure.

Did anyone else have this problem and go on to make a good recovery?

Many thanks 

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  • Posted

    Hi Rihanna,

    I am 7 weeks post tka and apparently everyone is different.

    Pleased your pain is improving but the key is the physio exercises, ice, elevation and not sitting for too long. I found the first 2 weeks were really hard but worked rigidly at the programme. I think your bending will come work with your physio and write any questions you have down.

    7 days post op is too early to be worrying it's a long haul by all accounts.

    At 7 weeks happy with bend but flexion only at about 10 degrees so a way to go.

    Let me know how it goes

    Best wishes


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  • Posted

    Seven days?  Only a week?  You're a "Kneebie"!!!  These may help...





    You've just started a very loooooooooooong journey.  This will take a year...less if you're lucky but don't count on it.  Don't compare your recovery to anyone else's.  Give up ALL expectations and timetables.  Be Zen: "I'll be better when I'm better."

    Eat healthy, lose weight, hydrate, ice, elevate, take your meds, go to PT, do your home exercises, hit the gym in a few months to rebuild your quads, glutes and core.  This will be painful and this will be long.  Be prepared for advances, setbacks and plateaus (the worst).  TKRs are not for wimps...and you're not a wimp.  You will find strength you never know you had!!!

    "Never give up!  Never surrender!" - Tim Allen, Galaxy Quest

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    • Posted

      8 weeks post total knee with patellar resurface happy with flexon but extension at 12 degrees.

      Doing two lots if 30 minutes on bike and all the physio regime. Have you our your daughter any tips on getting max extension. Thanks

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  • Posted

    Thanks everyone for your advice- it really has helped set my mind at rest. I think I've had unrealistic expectations of myself and have been listening to too many 'I was back in work 3 weeks later' stories. I did have a lot of knee surgery as a teenager but had no responsibilities to take care of. I could just wait around and recover. It's not so easy these days. The panic sets in

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  • Posted

    Please don't start feeling so anxious. It's so very early in your recovery. My bend has been very very slow coming, I'm now at ten weeks and it's just got to 90. I still have a lot of stiffness but feel loads better and every week sees an improvement however small. Exercise regularly, ice, ice and ice again.  You will get there and this site is just great for tips and help. 🙃

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  • Posted

    Hi I live in NZ and had to go private for my TKJR so could only afford 2 nights in hospital and have had no PT. I got all my exercises from Internet and friends. I'm 70 and at 7 weeks bend is 124. Had same pain as you but now easing and better with lots of icing and exercise little and often, you will progress, it is hard but need patience and perseverance. Sleep is the hardest but take small naps during day and that too will get better All the best Maggie.

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    • Posted

      Well done Maggie we are obviously spoilt. I have actually found the Internet really useful.

      I agrewleft even be hours sleep is a bonus but it's essential for healing. Best wishes Jan

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  • Posted

    Hi there, wow! Hold up a little you are 7 days post op. That is absolutely nothing in terms of recovery. If you are at 75 degrees you are doing really well. I had TKR in Oct last year & didn't get 75 until later.

    Massage your scar once the clips are out & it is healing, do it every day using E45 cream or BioOil. Be quite tough with the massage, you want to be breaking up internal scar tissue.

    Do all your exercises & ice regularly and rest often. You will be tired, you have just had your knee cut about & a metal (probably) joint put in. You've been cut up. sliced & diced, holes drilled in your femur & tibia, don't expect to just get up & go in 7 days. You won't even have recovered from all that being done to you let alone getting back to normal.

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  • Posted

    Sorry sent too soon!

    I was going to say. Don't be too hard on yourself, be more tortoise, less hare.

    You will get there in your own time.

    Good luck on your journey.

    Keep in touch, let us know how you're getting on.

    All the best



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  • Posted

    Hi, 7 Days post-op is still very early and I am sure that swelling is also playing a role in bending your knee.  Please visit a PT to help you with your bend, they also use interference therapy and other types of treatments that will help with healing as well as swelling.  Do the exercises they prescribe without overdoing it and you should see improvement within a few days.  Be patient and get all the help you need - recovering from a TKR is a long, hard journey.  Rest, ice and elevation are your best friends right now.  Hang in there!
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  • Posted

    I'm just a bit impatient I suppose. I had the op done on the NHS so have to wait for an appointment letter to come through from the physio therapy department. I'm just hoping it's sooner rather than later.

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  • Posted

    I'm having my FKR this next Wednesday Feb. 8th. So glad I found this site. Everything I have read so far has calmed my anxiety over having the surgery. I have been given very little info on what to expect. I have even wondered how I will be able to get from the garage to our living room when I come home from the hospital. My husband had eye lid surgery and did a face plant in the garage when we came home from the hospital before we walked into our house. Needless to say. I was freeking!!! Any info I need to know will be greatly appreciated concerning the upcoming surgery.

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    • Posted

      You'll walk into your house. I came home with two sticks-- getting in and out of the car was awkward, needed my hubby to help lift my leg in.

      Get in good leg first.

      But no problem walking into house and up steps.

      They make sure you can do steps before they let you come home.

      Just think of it as a short period of time that brings enormous benefits.

      It's tough for a while, but you must be in pain anyway to need it doing.

      If you're prepared and know it's normal to have pain, and you WILL get better, it's easier to cope.

      I had it done twice, both knees, it can't be that bad.

      You won't be a total invalid, you'll be exercising every day, and pottering about a little bit.

      Good luck, it will soon be over.x. 


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    • Posted

      Hi there.You are usually kept in for 2 to 3 days. Mobilised from day one and the physios will show you how to use crutches or frame, how to transfer from bed to chair and sit and raise etc. You will be given gentle exercises for your hospital stay to prevent blood clots and for muscleaning tone. It's I important thato you take regular pain relieve prior to surgery so remind the nurses and ask physios when they will come so you can plan.

      You should be fine mobilising as you will have a new more stable knee and I felt quite emotional that I could actually place weight on in. Physios teach you how to stairs, get in and out of the car etc before discharge. The OT can help if you need raised loo seats or raisers for chair but I only needed this for 2 weeks but everyone is different.

      I am nearly 8 weeks in and it gets easier but it's vital to do your physio exercises and even with painkillers it can be uncomfortable to start with but remember it's a big op but routine.

      Let me know if you want to know anything else but I had mine in NHS UK and have had great treatment so far.

      A bit of advise take a notebook to hospital to jot down questions and you can use it at home to recored sets of exercises done and times of medication. You can then have a record of progress and have it handy for your follow ups.

      I have not regretted having this done but a few tears in the 1st 2 weeks but it gets easier.

      All the best Jan

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    • Posted

      In my reply to the current poster, I told her that you had great thoughts and encouragement. I had written that I hoped you read her post. She needs your links to your "everything you need to know about TKR" . I hope you are ok with me doing that.

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