TKR leg length

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I had a TKR Dec 20th 2016 and I am still in a lot of pain and now my leg is 2cm longer and I walk with a major wobble. I have no doubt that the pain is from my tendons trying to be stretched. I'm still on a lot of meds and have seeing a lot of doctors. I have full range but the tightness is killing me. Went in for a second opinion and that Dr said that there is no way my leg could be that much longer, he said I would be in so much pain if that was the case. Any suggestions?

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  • Posted

    How many doctors have you seen and have their opinions been similar? What kind of things have they suggested? Have they xrayed your legs or measured them to determine how things are?
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  • Posted

    I've heard of this before and people immediately run out to buy orthotics for their shoes or think the surgery went drastically wrong.  Not saying that can't be the cause...but...

    At 5 weeks post-op, I got some real bad sciatic pain.  Went to my PT friend; he told me that one leg was 1/2" longer than the other.  With that info in hand, I went to my chiropractor who confirmed the 1/2" and then found that my SI joints were all locked up.  Three weeks later, my hips and back were properly aligned, my legs were the same size and I was out of pain.

    Almost everyone somehow screws up their lower back or hips because we have naturally change the way we've walked for so long to avoid the knee pain.  You can get the pain in your lower back, hips, SIs, shooting down your leg, whatever.  The easiest, non-invasive thing to check out is a chiropractor to see if your back and hips are aligned properly.  If not, there's your fix.

    Again, this could be something more serious (like when I got L2/L3 stenosis 8 months post-op and needed a fusion) but I wouldn't be so quick to think leg length.  Try the simple solution first and see if it works...did for me.

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    • Posted

      Excellent advice. I'm 6 weeks post TKR and when I try walking around my apartment without my cane, it definitely feels as though one leg is shorter than the other, but my physical therapist says it's my hip compensating. I used to have low back issues (L4-5) and even when I wasn't having pain, when I stood up straight and looked in the mirror, one shoulder was always lower than the other. It still is although not quite as obvious. But this was due to my back being out of alignment, and after decades of seeing chiropractors I'm hoping those days are done.

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    • Posted

      Chico, out of the blue I got terrible neck pain near my hairline. I am 5 months post op. I went to the emergency room at my local hospital and they did an X-ray. Everything showed up good, but of course it doesn't show everything such as a pinched nerve. I was given Motrin 600 and a muscle relaxer andwas told to see a Neurologist, The meds took away the pain, so now I am going to stop the meds to see if the pain returns. Do you think the neck pain could also be from the way I walk since having the TKR. I think I walk fine without a limp but who knows!

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    • Posted

      Could be.  Try walking with a heavy backpack over one shoulder only.  You'll have neck pain in a week.  People have no idea how much pain they have could be caused by spine and hip alignment issues.

      True case...  Two months ago, I had a VERY painful hip pointer...pain right on the tip of my left hip.  Went to the doc who had no idea...prescribed pain meds, not a cure.  So I went to my chiropractor and showed her where the pain was.  She touched a spot on my back...I hit the ceiling.  Quadratus Lumborum (QL) muscle, both sides of your lower back, kind of covering your kidneys.  She knew the EXACT cause of my pain.  The muscle was very tight from the way I had been walking.  Some massage...gone.

      I'd check in with a chiropractor first.  If they can't hep you and it really is a cervical spine issue (worst case...C1 (Atlas) and C2 (Axis) are up in that area), you'll need an MRI and then maybe a CT/M plus a good neuroSURGEON (not a neurologist).  Let's hope it doesn't come to that.

       

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