Scar tissue on TKR

Posted , 5 users are following.

I have read lots about scar tissue problems on this forum. Can someone explain to me what it is, how to recognise it and how it is formed, please?

In short, I had a TKR August 2015 and recovery while not easy nor painfree was progressing nicely with good bends and straights.

A while ago I tripped and since then the knee has been painful and stiff.  I had my year check at the beginning of September and the Consultant assured me that the xray showed that the inplant was fine.  He said to give it a couple of months before worrying. However, the knee is still very stiff and not as flexible as it was before the fall.

Could this be due to scar tissue forming, or should I really just be more patient?


2 likes, 6 replies

6 Replies

  • Posted

    I would have thought it is caused by inflamation rather than scar tissue. That could easily make the joint stiff. Maybe trauma to soft tissues around ligaments? If you're not already I would have thought ice might help a bit but as he said i would rest for a couple of months with just light non-painful exercises but I'm not a Dr. or PT so it is just an opinion.

  • Posted

    As I understand it, scar tissue is a stringy kind of tissue that when fully formed will stop movement.  It is also referred to as adhesions.  The reason they like to see full ROM within 3 months is because after this time interval the scar tissue can build up to a point where it needs to be cut or at least broken through MUA, so you get a second chance at working up ROM.  Since you tramatized your joint by falling, I would say rest a week, stay off it and use crutches and then take pain meds or continue them as you start pressing in to bend.  PT can be helpful this way but not if they insist on wearing you out with all kinds of exercises that make you over much sore afterwards.  It's not easy trying to tell you what you can and cannot do.  For me after getting to 8 weeks post op, I quit, telling them I want to try it on my  own for a couple weeks.  Which I will and if I hit a wall with the ROM, although I doubt that will happen, I will just check in with them to measure my ROM before the 3 month check up with the surgeon.

  • Posted

    Scar tissue best can be described as tissue trying to heal faster than it can be stretched. Everything sort of grows together prohibiting the soft issue from being flexible or pliable. It then has to be pulled on to get it to work properly and without pain. Sometimes massaging vit E oil in and around The wound (after its completely healed and scab free) can soften and heal. Activity iscreallbthe best method of helping prevent scar tissue. Many years ago they keep people in the hospital for a week with an appendectomy. This caused the intestines to grow together in what was diagnosed as adhesions. That was pretty much scar tissue of the intestines. Now they hardly let you lay down long enough to have That same surgery.
  • Posted

    Hi linda. Does not sound like scar tissue. Ask your MD about anti- inflammatories. I take Celebrex 100mg for a effusion caused by trauma. They help. Best wishes
    • Posted

      Thanks looked up Celebrex as I had never heard of it, but I have high blood pressure which is probably why my GP has never suggested it. Will ask next time I see her thought.
    • Posted

      There are 2 or 3 side effects that can be more serious than the original problem. Understand its great stuff otherwise. In th US you see ads for it on TV every time you turn it on and huge multi page ads in magazines so I'm guessing insurance companies don't like paying the high cost as well.

      We had to learn the hard way about the side effects of one of the highly advertised depression drugs. My wife was hit suddenly with depression and anxiety to the point of almost completely being immobilized. The Dr finally put her on Abilify, another wonder drug. Very expensive.....over $500 USD for 30 pills. My copay was almost $100. Then came the Parkinson's diagnosis and boom......gotta back off the abilify as it causes Parkinson's symptoms.....tremors, muscle tightness etc. We had to spend the next 3 weeks tapering off as its a drug you just can't stop.

      I used to be one that said off The Dr orders it...its gold. Now I Talk to my pharmacist as I think they know more than the Dr's when it comes to meds.

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