Flexibility and Range of Motion after TKR

Posted by 4russcoll @4russcoll, May 16, 2021

75 y/o and a month after TKR healing well. Extension good but flexibility only 85 degrees. Looking for suggestions for exercises to improve. Dr set goal of 110 degrees in 3 weeks

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Hello @4russcoll, You will notice we changed the title of your discussion a little to hopeful better describe your question so that members can find it and share their experience with you. I think what helped me the most at home was having an exercise bike that I could adjust the seat so that I didn't stress the knee too much and I would ride it for 15 to 20 minutes a couple of times a day and then ice and elevate the leg to help prevent any swelling. @ellerbracke @contentandwell @artscaping and others may also have some suggestions for you. Here is a video from my favorite PT guys on YouTube on Guidelines to Achieve Maximal Knee Flexion (Bending) Range of Motion – Total Knee Replacement

What kind of exercises have you been doing at home for your TKR?

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@johnbishop

Hello @4russcoll, You will notice we changed the title of your discussion a little to hopeful better describe your question so that members can find it and share their experience with you. I think what helped me the most at home was having an exercise bike that I could adjust the seat so that I didn't stress the knee too much and I would ride it for 15 to 20 minutes a couple of times a day and then ice and elevate the leg to help prevent any swelling. @ellerbracke @contentandwell @artscaping and others may also have some suggestions for you. Here is a video from my favorite PT guys on YouTube on Guidelines to Achieve Maximal Knee Flexion (Bending) Range of Motion – Total Knee Replacement

What kind of exercises have you been doing at home for your TKR?

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Thank you for the advice John. I found the video very helpful.
At home have been doing some short sessions on exercise “bike” (set of pedals on floor), knee glide, step stretch, walking and dangling leg w 4 pound weight to bend knee.
Most progress fm Outpatient PT has come from using heat + hamstring weight machine to alternate weighted flexing and hamstring curls.
Restarting daily Outpatient PT for next 2 weeks.
Swelling and bruising was a problem earlier but has largely abated. Dr prescribed prednisone to further reduce and encouraged continued use of tramadol and/or oxycodone to assist w PT.

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Question? Do they cut into the muscle right below the kneecap on TKR?

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@izfrankd

Question? Do they cut into the muscle right below the kneecap on TKR?

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Hello @izfrankd, Thank you for the private message. I thought I would answer it in the same discussion where you posted your question after your first post.

I don't believe they cut into the muscle but I'm not sure. Here is the step by step procedure for doing a knee replacement for more information – Knee Replacement Surgery Procedure: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/treatment-tests-and-therapies/knee-replacement-surgery-procedure

Your first post was about the knee buckling and you mentioned going back to your doctor who ordered more physical therapy but that hasn't helped and you still have pain and swelling. Here is an article you might find helpful — The unstable knee: wobble and buckle: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25381421/

Have you thought about getting a second opinion

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It will be 12 weeks this week since my surgery. If I exercise too much I can't even hardly bend my knee… I am 56 years old, a woman, and had knee replacement surgery because of osteoarthritis. I am having the worst time ever. My physical therapy goes well and the next day I am so stiff. I can only bend on my own to 90°.

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@brenda65

It will be 12 weeks this week since my surgery. If I exercise too much I can't even hardly bend my knee… I am 56 years old, a woman, and had knee replacement surgery because of osteoarthritis. I am having the worst time ever. My physical therapy goes well and the next day I am so stiff. I can only bend on my own to 90°.

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Good evening @brenda65 and before we explore your TKR recovery let me welcome you to Connect. It just so happens that I had my second TKR in August. I am 79 years old. When you speak about physical therapy are you at an Orthopedic facility? Are you also using ice and elevating your knee above your heart? I just re-read some medical research and it does indicate that the surgery is perhaps the best way to handle osteoarthritis in the knee. However…..stiffness is one of the post surgery situations that was mentioned as problematic.

This surgery and the recovery was amazingly easy for me to deal with for a couple of reasons. #1, I started pre-op exercises a month before the surgery. #2. I had robotic same day surgery. That went very well and was much more accurate and was also minimally less invasive than the regular surgery.

So what are you thinking of doing now? You are O.K. with the post surgery exercises……walking, stretching, practicing balance and other recommended movements. Have you ever heard of Myofascial Release Therapy? After my PT session I went directly to my MFR therapist so that she could eliminate residual pain and compression. The result was that I had less pain and more movement. My ROM was 137 degrees and I had "0" extension. I had no problem driving and was able to handle stairs in a few weeks. I know that some recovery periods can take 12-18 mos. I feel so blessed to have been able to move more quickly.

What has your surgeon shared with you about your situation? Has he mentioned the possibility of scar tissue build up?

If you could tell me more about your sleep patterns and any other post surgery symptoms, I will be here to help you.

Chris

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@brenda65

It will be 12 weeks this week since my surgery. If I exercise too much I can't even hardly bend my knee… I am 56 years old, a woman, and had knee replacement surgery because of osteoarthritis. I am having the worst time ever. My physical therapy goes well and the next day I am so stiff. I can only bend on my own to 90°.

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Hello @brenda65. I'd like to add my welcome along with @artscaping who has come in to share some of her own experiences which I hope you find helpful.

You will notice that I have moved your post into an existing discussion by another member who also was experiencing some of your same concerns. I hope you and @4russcoll might also be able to connect to compare notes on your knee replacements.

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@brenda65

It will be 12 weeks this week since my surgery. If I exercise too much I can't even hardly bend my knee… I am 56 years old, a woman, and had knee replacement surgery because of osteoarthritis. I am having the worst time ever. My physical therapy goes well and the next day I am so stiff. I can only bend on my own to 90°.

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12 weeks is early I would hope your physical therapist has given u exercises to do at home to help this I’m i7 months post op and feel like I have regular knee having said that I do my exercise regimen given to me by my therapist to continue for ever so far so good.

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Yes! Thank you! I do my exercises but still get alot of inflammation and swelling. So discouraging…

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@artscaping

Good evening @brenda65 and before we explore your TKR recovery let me welcome you to Connect. It just so happens that I had my second TKR in August. I am 79 years old. When you speak about physical therapy are you at an Orthopedic facility? Are you also using ice and elevating your knee above your heart? I just re-read some medical research and it does indicate that the surgery is perhaps the best way to handle osteoarthritis in the knee. However…..stiffness is one of the post surgery situations that was mentioned as problematic.

This surgery and the recovery was amazingly easy for me to deal with for a couple of reasons. #1, I started pre-op exercises a month before the surgery. #2. I had robotic same day surgery. That went very well and was much more accurate and was also minimally less invasive than the regular surgery.

So what are you thinking of doing now? You are O.K. with the post surgery exercises……walking, stretching, practicing balance and other recommended movements. Have you ever heard of Myofascial Release Therapy? After my PT session I went directly to my MFR therapist so that she could eliminate residual pain and compression. The result was that I had less pain and more movement. My ROM was 137 degrees and I had "0" extension. I had no problem driving and was able to handle stairs in a few weeks. I know that some recovery periods can take 12-18 mos. I feel so blessed to have been able to move more quickly.

What has your surgeon shared with you about your situation? Has he mentioned the possibility of scar tissue build up?

If you could tell me more about your sleep patterns and any other post surgery symptoms, I will be here to help you.

Chris

Jump to this post

Hi, Chris! Thank you so much for your help!! I will look into the mft!! I do my exercises and get very swollen and alot of inflammation. I am at just a regular physical therapy office. I keep trying but it is so discouraging. I do sleep well. I do use ice and elevate my leg. I truly think it is scar tissue and my thigh muscle. Brenda

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