Still alot of tightness and soreness after two months

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I have been having alot of soreness under my incision underneath the skin. The outward appearance looks good. Anyone have this? It feels like raw meat. I have good flexion and extension. Surgeon said to quit outpatient PT and do exercises at home 1X a day, every other day. Will also ride my recumbent bike. Does this seem feasible at 8 weeks? My PT was kind of surprised but said I am doing well. The problem is, I dont feel like I am well with this terrible soreness and gripping tightness that wont leave. The tightness is really bad at night/first thing in the morning. And exercising doesnt really loosen my knee, seems to tighten it more. I know its still early......physician doesnt want to see me back for 2 years! So I feel like I am on my own and anything I say, he says, takes up to a year. He does give his patients his cell phone to call and ask Qs, so that is a good thing. I have to start back to work thursday (office job) and am dreading it.

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  • Posted

    Yes, this seems normal. I had terrible pain and burning under my incision for quite a while. Couldn't even stand for a sheet to touch my legs. It lasted maybe A few weeks. I got lanocain cream to help a little. I had both knees replaced at the same time and had 12 weeks of physical therapy. Went back to teaching after nine weeks. It was really tiring and my knees felt like bricks by the time I got home, but everyday life was the greatest therapy. I know it can be very discouraging but I promise it does get better. You are only eight weeks out. That is very early. Everyone heals differently and at a different pace. I even had one knee heal a lot faster than the other. One knee was doing great after 8 or 9 months. The other knee has finally really started losing the tight band feeling after 2 1/2 years.

    During my first year, I called my doctor four or five times. But i am surprised you do not have a one year check up. Just keep in touch with your doctor for your own peace of mind. Wishing the very best for you, Happy Healing!

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    • Posted

      I feel like you just wrote my knee replacement story for me. I also had bilateral knee replacement and my right knee healed faster than my left. Am 14 months post op and my left knee still bothers me a lot, some weeks great, then the next week not great. I see that you were 2 1/2 years before feeling better, which makes me feel better that this is not just me. I wonder if there is anything you did that you can share with Ellen09443 and myself that helped you recuperate, such as exercising, etc.

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    • Posted

      I think the thing that has helped me the most was using the stairs as much as possible. It has helped to strengthen the muscles above the knee. I always make sure I am putting my weight and tightening those muscles when I climb. It had really helped to strengthen them. That's been the biggest help. Your everyday life strengthens In many ways too. Just try to keep active...although i must admit many days i do become a couch potato after a full day of teaching nine and ten year olds! And yes, i would have good weeks and bad weeks. unfortuately the weather plays a part in that too. it is like you have become a human barometer!

      There were days that i honestly thought my right knee would not get any better. I had a very tight band feeling around it and the bend was not good. My doctor told me he has never seen two knees heal the same when they are done at different times or bilaterally. He has done over 6,000 knee replacements. and sometimes you get to thinking doctors are just telling you things to get you off their back. but honestly. each year does get much better...especially for my right leg. Don't give up. it will happen! You will get to the place where you are glad you did it! Wishing you all the best. I feel your pain! LOL And just keep moving as much as possible.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the information and the insight of your knee replacement journey. I appreciate your words as they are encouraging that eventually this shall pass and I won't worry that this will be my life.

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    • Posted

      One more thing that was a real encouragement to me. I kept a journal on my iPad from day one until now. I would go back and read it occasionally. It helped me see the improvements even when I didn't realize it. We have a tendency to forget the baby step improvements and just fret about not thinking

      things are moving fast enough. HAPPY HEALING!

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    • Posted

      I did the same, kept a daily diary on the ipad. It really does help and it's been interesting following it this time round to note how some things happen at the same time, but also how much easier this second knee has been and how I can do so much more at an earlier stage. It was 2 months before I could come downstairs normally last time and that knee still has some pain doing it even now, whereas the second knee achieved it at 3 weeks with nothing more than mild discomfort. It does help.

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  • Posted

    With my first knee that was done a year ago it felt as if the whole kneecap was red raw and any bending, straightening the knee or getting up from sitting was excruciating, but it did gradually subside, although even now I can still feel it a little coming downstairs at times. I think it was down to there being no cartilage left behind the kneecap and the years of bone on bone damage that occurred. I've been told that the tightness I feel at times is where the Iliotibial band crosses the femoral condoyle. Apparently it shortened because of my crooked leg and the surgeon reckons it will take 18 months to stretch and settle. It is improving all the time so don't give up hope. It's a long recovery process.

    By comparison, my second knee was done 3 weeks ago and has been a very different experience, much less pain and I can do far more already than I could at this stage last time. It goes to prove that no 2 knees are the same even on the same person having the same surgeon.

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  • Posted

    I had my TKR January 21st and I'm really starting to feel discouraged! I can't raise my leg without intense pain but my PT makes me do it. It's almost like my brain isn't working with my leg it just has trouble lifting, it feels like dead weight. I can straighten it fine, I just can't bend. My Physical Therapist comes one more time then I have outpatient PT. I know everyone heals at there own pace but I feel like I should at least be able to raise my leg by now. 😔 I can't have anything touch my leg either it feels like nerve pain not even a bed sheet.

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    • Posted

      Hang on in there. The inability to lift the leg is very common and you're right about the brain. Last year my physio said it was the brain trying to protect the knee after all it had been through. I used a therapy band to lift my leg gradually reducing the tension in the band as I lowered it and one day, like magic, I could lift it. I had a lot of trouble bending my first one too. It stiffened so quickly and heel slides were very painful. I found it better to do just 2 or 3 every hour rather than 10 in one go. Discouragement is very common at this stage, but it will get better, it just takes time. It's brutal surgery and can take up to 2 years to fully recover.

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    • Posted

      You're still at very early days; if it makes you feel any better - I was 6 weeks RTKR yesterday. Until last week I couldn't raise my leg either, kept giving it a go and then one day it just happened.

      I too can straighten but my bend is only 70/75 and it never seems to improve. I was sent home with six exercises to do 3x daily, (normal in UK I think) not seen a PT except for 2 and 6 week checks.

      I've just found advice and encouragement from this forum, it picks me up.

      I've been given 4 hydrotherapy sessions and found the first one helpful. But I do find that I get different info from each different PT !

      I've also been given more exercises to do, it's hard because my knee feels swollen, tight, hard but I try to persevere and I hope, reading others experiences, that it will all come together . I can see little improvements and sometimes it's good to focus on that.

      good luck with your recovery, keep at it 😃

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