Help with pain after 3 months of TKR
It has been 3 months since I had TKR and still have terrible pain behind my knee. I finally got my ROM up to 115 and can bend my knee when walking although I still have to use a walker. I’m going to get a second opinion because my surgeon has been totally unhelpful. Does anyone have any recommendations on coping with the pain and is this normal? I feel so frustrated and scared I might be this way for the rest of my life. It’s pretty much nonstop pain. I go to PT 3x a week for 2 hour sessions and they have helped me with ROM and knee strengthening but have so far to go. They are trying to get me a Dynasplint. Has anyone ever used one and does it help? Thank you so much for any advice you can give me. I’m so depressed! I had no idea it would be like this.
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I am 5 months out and if I do too much I still have pain. I don't use a walker anymore however if I am going to do lots of walking I always need my cane. I'm told it will get better. I think 2 hours at a time of PT is a bit much. My first month I did 3x a week for 45 minutes, second month twice a week and the third month once a week. Once y PT stopped my leg did feel better and my range of motion was 115 on my own and 123 with the band however if I overdo my exercises or walking my leg hurts and I feel it behind my knee is well. Have to stop and ice it and rest and it resolves until I overdo it again. I'm active and stubborn lol….I am told it will get better with time. In your situation I would ask for a different opinion and see what they say. Have they done more x-rays or anything else? Perhaps oral cortisone (I took it at 3 months and am taking another round now). I know they won't inject a new implant.
Never used a dynasplint so I cannot be helpful there but will try to address the other issues u raised. I exercise everyday in varying degrees, which includes dance, but the TKR knee inflames, feels swollen, and takes a day to calm down and the pain to subside. At times the pain is behind the patella, above it, below, or all 3. Sometimes (rarely) none. Ice is "somewhat" helpful, Nabumetone made no difference in my pain. I'm 9 months out and have reluctantly resigned myself to the new normal. After warmup I do a lot calf building exercises by pressing down at the toes and alternatively down at the heel, pushing weight. That paid off big time and doesn't aggravate the knee. Yesterday I walked up 4 flights of stairs (holding the rails) w/o issue because of the increased strength in my calf muscles. Instead of relying upon my knees to lift me onto each step, my calf muscles assisted. I also do a lot of arm strength exercises to compensate for what has become a problematic knee and also to avoid falls. I lost weight which reduced the burden on the TKR knee. My second opinion doctor turned out to be very helpful. Via arthroscopy surgery she removed scar tissue that grew inside & caused popping sounds, but the scar tissue came back after only 2 months. Bottom line for me was to accept where I'm at, dispense with the anger, and learn to live with it. Building strength & losing weight are things I can do and both help me deal with the rage & dysfunction this procedure caused for me. U r not alone. Hope this helped.
Thank you both for responding. It really helps to know you’re not alone! Yesterday GP put me on Meloxicam (7.5 tablet once a day) to see if that helps because the MRI showed a lot of inflammation. Next week I have appointment for second opinion. I think the fact my surgeon does not communicate has made it even harder. I really thought this was going to be much easier and I am really trying to keep a good attitude and have patience. Very grateful for this support group. Really helps to know how other people are doing it!
Hello, it seems that you and the others responding on this blog are in the at least 20% of people that the tkr doesn’t help and have to live with chronic pain. I am 19 months out and still have significant pain, especially on the lateral kneecap. I just had second genicular nerve ablation to see if that will help. First one 6 months ago didn’t do much. Walking, stairs, swimming, cycling all aggravate my knee. Use rock tape a few days a week then off it and use diclofenac 3-4 times a day. Plus have knee sleeve from Incrediwear that helps. Second opinion surgeon said tkr was done correctly and nothing can be done surgically to decrease pain. Pain sucks!!
I used a dynasplint after a TKR 4 years ago. I found it very painful and it didn’t help. I had revision surgery where a ton of very dense scar tissue was removed from my knee and a prosthetic was put in place, which was 2 sizes smaller. So maybe that’s why the dynasplint didn’t work.
Although I have not had a TKR, I am now on my 3rd hip replacement. This time a physio assistant suggested that I get rehab activator poles as they are recommended for those with knee and hip issues. I found, most bizarrely that if I had pain using crutches, walker, etc, the use of the poles as recommended by the manufacturer, ( there are videos etc) the pain subsided. I find them easier than a walker and over time with proper use build core muscles and arm muscles and aid in balance and help with gait. Hope this is beneficial.
Thank you all for your comments and suggestions! Right now I’m hoping the Meloxicam will help although I understand it takes awhile to kick in. I will definitely check out the poles. I’m sorry to hear that the Dynasplint was painful. That’s disappointing.
Hello, I am a 63 year old female, I had my TKR 5 months ago, at 3 months, I was in so much pain, never used a walker, because when I went into PT, they told me to throw it away! My surgeon told me not to start PT for two weeks!(big mistake)! By the time I went in, my knee was so frozen up! Well, I would go to my torture sessions I called them, until finally I said,”That’s enough “ Went back to my surgeon and he scheduled me an MUA, (manipulation under anesthesia) so now I was about 3 months 2 weeks, it felt better, didn’t feel like I was dragging around a tree stump anymore! But now I just feel pretty much like crap every day! No energy, just can barely function! I keep asking if my body could be rejecting my new knee? Is it poisoning my body? So I called 2 other surgeons, they won’t even look at me until a year out!! I’m sorry you are having problems, I hope you feel better soon.
I would hope that after your mua you got back to a good physical therapist. My therapist had me in his office the day I came home from the hospital after my TKR. I’m sorry you had to go through all that. I am almost 2 years from TKR and still do my daily exercise regimen therapist told me to continue.
I like you my surgeon waited over a week after surgery to start pt by than I was pretty tight …. But I was using walker for a bit …. Never got the bend like you tried mua did not help long story short went to another dr at 7 months …. My first knee wasvthree sizes too big ( let me tell you all this is within dr leagal right to do ) put parts in you that are too big lol … well needless to say with new dr I was in surgery at my year date got a revision woke up amazing….now can go up and down steps slow but doing it … I am 7 months out of revision… so dr do see you just have to find revision dr …. They just may not operate until a year out…. Good luck I am living proof it gets better