Stuck at 90 degrees

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I'm 4 weeks out from right tkr. I've been stuck at 90 degrees for 2-3 weeks. I'm pushing it at home and at therapy. Any suggestions?? Very frustrated and scared that this is as good as it's gonna get!!

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  • Posted

    Can you get to a swimming pool? This helps me a lot on range of motion. See if your doctor or physical therapist will okay you to enter the pool. Don't give up:

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  • Posted

    Hi Lisa

    I'm at 117 three weeks post op. What has worked for me is

    1) take Oxycodone 1 hour prior to PT (essential)

    2) warm the leg up doing easy flexes and extentions before PT

    3) your physical therapist should be pushing your leg beyond 90 ( which no doubt will leave u feeling like torture) pure hell but necessary

    4) practice flexing the knee using a stair case with the surgical leg one step above and lean into it beyond pain, hold it 5-10 secs and slowly release repeat 5 times 3x a day

    5) use the stationary bike, starting slow and easy rocking he pedals back and forth at first. This was highly effective in reducing pain as well.

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    • Posted

      GREAT ADVICE!!!  ...especially taking some pain meds before PT.  I used 800mg Ibuprophin because I was already off the opioids.  And your PT should always be warming up your knee with 5-10 minutes on the bike (increased over time).  Stair flexing is GREAT; and, yes, your PT will push your knee down and will make you pull it towards your butt.  It hurts...no getting around that.  You are breaking down the scar tissue that's building up.

      Don't be scared; that's only your "inner child" whining.  We've ALL been there!  Kick it to the curb!  You've been through the worst of this @ 4 weeks; you should feel a lot of pride and confidence because of that.  Plus, you're expecting too much @ 4 weeks.  I started PT in my third week...the PT lasted another NINE.  Got me to -1 / +128.  Here's the post...

      http://patient.info/forums/discuss/zero-degrees--517809

      Remember...  This takes time and is NOT a linear process...lots of ups and downs but you want the trend always to be towards 0 / +120.  I was stuck at -4 for a couple of weeks...only made me more determined.  I'm 5 months post-op and at 0 / +130...my goal is 138 like my other leg.  After PT gets you to a point where you're more comfortable, start some real leg exercises at the gym or in the pool.  Right know, your quad is like jello; you have to strengthen the leg to support the knee.  

      One last thing...  Everyone's different!  Don't compare yourself to anyone else's progress...anyone.  Motto: No excuses.  Do the work.

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

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    • Posted

      @ 4 weeks, I was virtually unconscious.  You are doing GREAT!!!  Just make the commitment to do everything you can to get better every day.  Eat healthy, HYDRATE, do your exercises. You will NOT see progress on a daily basis...it's measured by looking back weeks and months later.

      Here's another post that might help...

      http://patient.info/forums/discuss/the-tkr-experience-or-wish-i-had-another-kidney-stone--524499

      IMHO, you're doing better than most @ 4 weeks.  Keep it up...

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  • Posted

    Lisa I'm just shy of 6 weeks po and what has helped me is the pool! I do my exercises in the pool and I can stand in the pool and grab my foot behind me - my rom was 135 last week - work at it you'll get there!

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  • Posted

    Be patient! It took me many months - depends how bad it was pre- op - it's very early days for you. Chin up and get on with Physio - the stiffness and swelling will subside and range of motion will increase. It can be a long hard road - touch wood you'll be fine in another 6 weeks

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  • Posted

    Wow that's awesome .. I had a fall 8 days after surgery which hindered my recovery as I tore all the stitches below my knee.. was readmitted to hospital for observation for 5 days and no movement except for the bathroom.  Surgeon didn't won't to really go back in and redo internal stitching due to high % of getting an infection.  Ended up with steri strips and a huge battery operated bandage that took out any excess fluid. (forget the name of them)  I've had alot of issues and at 10mths post op I'm 110 ROM and my surgeon is thrilled with that due to all my issues that I've had.  I reckon 90 degrees at 4 wks is going ok!

    Cheers Tracey

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    • Posted

      Lisa, what was your rom prior to surgery? If you were not at 90 degrees then it will take a lot longer to reach that stage than most.

      I have learnt that everyone is at completely different stages when getting their Tkr....replacing the knee element is the easy part and movement will be regained quite quickly with that. It's the soft tissue damage that takes longer to recover....a lot of people don't have much of this so they tend to achieve higher rom much quicker. We need to remember how bad our disability was before, how many years suffering and how much damage had been done....our bodies need longer than a few weeks to recover.

      Just keep going with your exercises and it will improve (and try to ignore everyone else's measurements...hard I know but we're all on our own journey - you're probably further along than others with extension, muscle strength, balance, sleeping etc. but no one mentions all of these).

      I am 6 weeks post revision op and 90 is my goal - at 38 I haven't been able to reach 90 degrees in over 5 years due to the severe damage in my leg. As I say everyone's journey is different, please don't be disheartened, maintaining 90 at 4 weeks is amazing.

      Xx

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    • Posted

      So true Kathryn .. everyone forgets how long a healing process this is my surgeon told me anything from 12-18mths.  And every knee is different in how it will heal some quick some slow some with complications even if minor and some without. 

      It's a tough long journery but as people who have posted who are 2yrs post op so recommend it .. we need alot of patience which at times I've struggled with.

      And sleep well I was on strong narcotics for months and was disappointed they didn't knock me out to sleep (I'm an insomniac anyway and thought they may help smile )

      Can't agree more with your comments smile xox

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  • Posted

    I think your doing great I can't get past 69% bend.PT tells me I'll get there.I'm very worried. Keep up the good work.

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