Not able to straighten leg post 5 wks TKR

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Hello All. I am 5 weeks post tkr. My issue that I am having is I am unable to straighten my leg all the way(I can get 3-4 fingers under the knee to the ground) the therapist and I have tried everything and nothing is working. I am able to bend about 110 so I am not worried about that. I am 44 yrs old and I know I don't want to walk with a limp all my life. Any others have issues with this? sad I go back to the dr's next week. I am nervous that I will never be able to straighten my leg. 

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36 Replies

  • Posted

    Took me nearly 12 weeks to get there, so don't stress out too much about it. Sounds like you are doing all the right things. At 13 weeks I still tend to limp if I'm tired & not focusing.

    It's natural to want to be back to normal right away.

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  • Posted

    Hi Breela

    i'm 6weeks post op and like you I can bend my knee but I can't straighten it 

    the physio just gave me some exercises and said it will get there 

    he didn't seem worried

    i see my surgeon next week so hopefully he will give me some advice 

    the physio said to sit with my foot on a stool and get some oven gloves and put a tin of beand in each pocket and weigh my knee down

    i haven't tried it yet as it sounds a bit drastic to me ..but tomorrow I will give it a go and let you know what it feels like.

    i'm a lot older than you (76) butI don't want a limp either 

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    • Posted

      I have been told to put my foot on a stool as well and put a book not very heavy but heavy enough to cause a stretch under my knee several times a day. And he said once I can tolerate that I can go to something a little heavier. I am a tad impatient about things. Good luck Jean!
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  • Posted

    I had trouble straightening too but it's early days for you. I was given the exercise to lie on my tummy on the bed with leg below the knee hanging over the end and a weight round the ankle and let it hang there for a while. I found this intolerable and when I told the physio in knee class she told me to leave it and gave me some others. I found the best one just sitting on a chair with foot on another one and pushing down the knee and holding it fo 30 seconds x 3. Also, putting heel on a footstool while standing and bending till stretch felt at back of leg. After 2 or 3 weeks my leg had straightened. I'm sure you'll get there too if you keep up these kind of exercises. 

    Jen 

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  • Posted

    I'm also 5 weeks post-op and my leg won't go flat yet either.

    i think it is something that comes with time.

    my physio told me last week that there was some improvement so I guess I just need to be a patient patient.😀

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    • Posted

      I agree I need to be patience as well but I am not that type of person. Here is some of the things sugguested to me I am going to try them so maybe it could help you as well. 

      The best one is just sitting on a chair with foot on another one and pushing down the knee and holding it fo 30 seconds x 3. Also, putting heel on a footstool while standing and bending till stretch felt at back of leg. After 2 or 3 weeks my leg had straightened. I'm sure you'll get there too if you keep up these kind of exercises. 

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  • Posted

    Hi  ... I am  month post op. Sometimes the extension is very good and occasionallywhat  used to be easy seizes up . I had hydrotherapy the other. day and the therapist helped by putting my heel in his hand and his other hand gently on the knee and sort of pulled at one end and pushed down on the knee ... This did help. If you have anyone to help this might help at home too ... My extension has come back.

    I am hating every minute of all this .. Lack of sleep, pain, heat and swelling ... But at a month I have to look back and say there are improvements, so keep going!

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    • Posted

      Hello

      I'm 6 weeks post op and like you I'm hating every minute of this.

      i never realised what we would be going through.

      but Ican assure you each week gets better.

      i take painkillers only when the pain gets bad as the constipation they cause is awful.

      i will get my husband to help me with the exercise you just said anything is worth a try as my bend is good but I can't get the knee straight yet

      thanks for the tip.

      hang in there you are doing so well up to now 

      jean 

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  • Posted

    Hi 

    I too am at 5 weeks and having trouble straightening. I was measured at 10 degrees straight and 100 bend recently so I'm getting there but hate the weird way I'm walking.!  I came off pain meds at 4 weeks as they made me dopey so just on paracetamol and ibuprofen as necessary - nothing else 

    when resting i place my heel on  a chair and keep pressing down on the knee and i think there's some improvement. 

    I'm starting hydro therapy next week so I'm expecting great things! 

    I'm a young and active 63 and  just want to be fit again 

    But is anyone else experiencing the depression this journey brings? High days and low days i guess! 

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  • Posted

    Hi 

    I too am at 5 weeks and having trouble straightening. I was measured at 10 degrees straight and 100 bend recently so I'm getting there but hate the weird way I'm walking.!  I came off pain meds at 4 weeks as they made me dopey so just on paracetamol and ibuprofen as necessary - nothing else 

    when resting i place my heel on  a chair and keep pressing down on the knee and i think there's some improvement. 

    I'm starting hydro therapy next week so I'm expecting great things! 

    I'm a young and active 63 and  just want to be fit again 

    But is anyone else experiencing the depression this journey brings? High days and low days i guess! 

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    • Posted

      Hi

      i think the highs and lows are part of the recovery from this Op

      i too have trouble straightening my leg

      i was given this exercise by someone on here 

      lay on your stomach on the bed and dangle your leg off the edge of the bed and gravity will do the rest

      this was the most painful thing I've done  but if you turn yourself over from your TKR side onto your. Stomach it seems easier ...I only last about 4 mins and I slide myself to a standing position off the end of the bed to get back up 

      not a pretty sight ...lol

      but it seems to be working 

       

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    • Posted

      Hi - I think everyone on here has suffered depression one time or another during their journey. My doctor actually prepared me for it! It's because your body has been through a lot of trauma. You will be your young & active self again soon! smile

      Betty 21 1/2 weeks. ( I think - I'm starting to lose track smile

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    • Posted

      Aww well 14 weeks is still pretty early Jean, and as many have said, we all progress at different speeds. You sound like a delightful lady and hard to imagine you not feeling confident!

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    • Posted

      Thank you Betty ..that's a lovely thing to say

      i know I've lost my confidence ..I used to go for a wander round the shops most days. And I haven't been out since last Thursday ...I promise myself I'll go out and then I make excuses not too ...I know I'm doing it  I think I need a good kick up the Bum ...lol 

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the support Betty! I was warned I'd hate my surgeon for 6 weeks - but no one mentioned the tears! I'm pottering about on my balcony garden in the sun this morning so it's good to be occupied smile 
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    • Posted

      I remember the therapist coming to see me on my first day in hospital to ask if I would need anything to help at home 

      I just erupted into floods of tears so she said she would come to me the following day

      i felt such a fool the next day as I really couldn't understand why I had burst into tears 

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    • Posted

      Isn't it strange!  Sometimes i look at the new knee and its quite ok really. Looks neat and not very swollen now but then i get  choked up and years come. I feel so daft! My husband just shrugs and says 'well you have had your leg almost amputated,  remodelled and stuck back on - with cement!' Haha 

      that cheers me u...  Well sort of! 

      How are you going? 

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    • Posted

      What a thought having your leg stuck back on with cement 

      when I was in the theatre having my op done although I had a spinal injection ..they also gave me some sedation to calm me down as I was petrified

       and I remember thinking ....why have they've got the builders in next door 

      it must have been them hammering at my leg ...lol

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    • Posted

      I was awake all through mine too! I'm sure I'm a bit mad - i asked the anaethetist to turn the music up as i couldn't hear it properly over the drilling! 

      The surgeon popped his head over the screen and said 'well that's a first!' lol 😂😁smile 

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    • Posted

      Hello here's me awake after two hours sleep... And yes the pic was a selfie ...I added it by going to the icon at the far end right hand corner of this box ...I'm not sure who told me how to do it.
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    • Posted

      Why only two hours sleep? It's just going on 8:00 pm here in the US and I will be ready to "crash" by 9:00! The older I get the earlier I go to bed! I don't know why or what's happening but I don't think I like it sad

      Get a nap Jean - that's too little sleep! 

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    • Posted

      Hi 

      I went to bed after midnight and woke just after 2am ...I'm in the UK but I did get back to sleep and woke another couple of times

       I haven't had a full nights sleep for months 

      Jean 

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