Scar tissue after knee replacement

Posted by leithlane @leithlane, Jan 31, 2017

I had knee replacement surgery 6 weeks ago . Through PT I have been working on breaking up the scar tissue only for it to regrow by the time I get back to PT two days later. I have been massaging at home, using a hand held massager and roller. It is painful and swollen. I am getting very disheartened. Any suggestions as to what else I can do. Has anyone had laser treatments to break up scar tissue? Were they effective?

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I've been walking without a walker for 2 weeks. Last pt I did 16 stairs for the first time. I do straightening and bending my knee very often, have no problem with that. PT states that has been excellent since my first visit. I only took nacotic for one week after surgery, went to tylenol. I did look at the link 4-6 weeks TY. Maybe I'm on schedule then. I did have lots of swelling in hospital and at home. Not so much now.

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I am curious, is there anyone here that has had scar tissue removed surgically that could possibly discuss with me. I am scheduled to go back to my surgeon September 7th for a reassessment. From my last visit, he determined that I had really thick and large scar tissue on my right knee due to the trauma to my knee (3 surgeries to same knee – 1st Root Repair to meniscus, 2nd Partial KR, 3rd TKR) Surgeon indicated he could not remove arthroscopically due to the size. He said he would need to open it back up to remove surgically. Is there anyone that may have been through this type of operation…. to remove large scar tissue? This knee journey for me has been going on since 2019.. and now facing a 4th surgery. Emotionally and physically tired!!

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@keeneau1

I have very similar situation. I also need a right shoulder replacement. Dr. said to put that off as long as possible, I was in my 60's then. I'm 76 now. So far that has been manageble.

I had a right TKR 5 weeks ago. I have a constant pain in that knee (like a toothache) I have good movment in the joint. My left knee isn't much better, but I really would not want to go thru this again so I hope it holds out for a long time.

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I’ve had a very long recovery from my 1st TKR & now 15 months from spacer revision. It functions, but my leg hyperextends so cane needed for walking. Some days, it feels like there’s hope…..Stay positive

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Sorry to hear you had a bad experience with it. I hope mine will turn out okay.

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I thought I might be able to help but my scar tissue caused Patella Clunk (sounded just like it reads) and they were able to perform an outpatient arthroscopic surgery. Have you considered a 2nd opinion?

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@krenn

I am curious, is there anyone here that has had scar tissue removed surgically that could possibly discuss with me. I am scheduled to go back to my surgeon September 7th for a reassessment. From my last visit, he determined that I had really thick and large scar tissue on my right knee due to the trauma to my knee (3 surgeries to same knee – 1st Root Repair to meniscus, 2nd Partial KR, 3rd TKR) Surgeon indicated he could not remove arthroscopically due to the size. He said he would need to open it back up to remove surgically. Is there anyone that may have been through this type of operation…. to remove large scar tissue? This knee journey for me has been going on since 2019.. and now facing a 4th surgery. Emotionally and physically tired!!

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No I have never had scar tissue removed. Hope you get everything taken care of. Keeneau

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I has a TKR on October 18, 2021 which caused swelling that I still have every day. This made PT difficult to achieve ROM past 90°, so I had the manipulation done in January 2022. It’s still the same. Knowing that I needed the right knee done next, I opted for regenerative medicine which I did in February 2022. It was successful and I no longer feel the torn meniscus that would’ve needed surgery. I wish I had known that regen medicine was available in my area before the TKR because that surgery changed my life as I knew it. I was once a physically active person and a Fitness Coach. Now I feel like a lame ‘duck’ and can barely do one-fourth of what I used to in a day.
I saw the surgeon this week about other alternatives and I was told that I’d have to have another surgery with 6-8 weeks of aggressive PT or learn to live with it. I took the second choice. For now.

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Sorry to hear …. But have you tried mfr I do this aggressively and the swelling comes down ….I go three times a week but I am still like 53 day out my mfr therapist has been in vacation for last 4 weeks so right now I am little swollen have not been able to bring down with ice elevating or meds…. So I understand what you are going through …. My mfr therapist back tomorrow thank goodness …. But I am at 95 flexion I think this is due to my mfr therapist keeping inflammation at bay … I know in time I won’t have to go as much ….I know you might have heard many people talk about it on these pages but it I am proof it truly works … this is the first I am swollen since my revision surgery in July ….. on the Mayo website look up therapist who train with dr barnes in your area you should be able to find a good one…. Good luck let me know how you are doing

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@krenn

I am curious, is there anyone here that has had scar tissue removed surgically that could possibly discuss with me. I am scheduled to go back to my surgeon September 7th for a reassessment. From my last visit, he determined that I had really thick and large scar tissue on my right knee due to the trauma to my knee (3 surgeries to same knee – 1st Root Repair to meniscus, 2nd Partial KR, 3rd TKR) Surgeon indicated he could not remove arthroscopically due to the size. He said he would need to open it back up to remove surgically. Is there anyone that may have been through this type of operation…. to remove large scar tissue? This knee journey for me has been going on since 2019.. and now facing a 4th surgery. Emotionally and physically tired!!

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Scar tissue is an elusive problem. I had my right knee replaced in Feb. 2021. Within three weeks I was dealing with excruciating pain, mostly on the lateral side. I tried acupuncture, traditional PT, MFR, genicular nerve ablation-all to no avail. Very reluctantly, my surgeon agreed to open it up again-full incision-to try to identify the source of my pain. Two weeks ago today, he Operated and found significant scar tissue throughout, most especially involving the IT band-the cause of the most significant pain. Two days post surgery I was walking with no aids and climbing stairs. I spend most of my time icing, icing, icing and have started PT with a concentration on ROM. It seems as if scar tissue is a very real complication, that it can appear even years after the initial surgery, and there’s little that can be done to prevent it. I replaced my left knee three months before this left one and had no problem whatsoever. Good luck!

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@krenn

I am curious, is there anyone here that has had scar tissue removed surgically that could possibly discuss with me. I am scheduled to go back to my surgeon September 7th for a reassessment. From my last visit, he determined that I had really thick and large scar tissue on my right knee due to the trauma to my knee (3 surgeries to same knee – 1st Root Repair to meniscus, 2nd Partial KR, 3rd TKR) Surgeon indicated he could not remove arthroscopically due to the size. He said he would need to open it back up to remove surgically. Is there anyone that may have been through this type of operation…. to remove large scar tissue? This knee journey for me has been going on since 2019.. and now facing a 4th surgery. Emotionally and physically tired!!

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I had TKR in 2020. Good range of motion but getting up from a chair or coming up stairs still hurt. In 2021 I did more therapy to hopefully break up scar tissue but to no avail. My surgeon was hesitant to open the knee up before a year had passed hoping it would go away. Also a lot of noise on standing. 2 weeks ago I underwent surgical scar tissue. They scoped my knee and took out the scar tissue. Doing well most pain is gone still a little tender from the scope.
I will do some PT to help

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@keeneau1

Sorry to hear you had a bad experience with it. I hope mine will turn out okay.

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keeneau,

If you haven't had surgery yet, please make sure to get your leg(s) in shape ahead of surgery, and then start PT immediately after surgery (they'll have you take a short walk with a PT and a walker in the hospital before they release you).

Do these things and it's unlikely you'll develop scar tissue. Once scar tissue forms, it creates a problem that can't be fixed with therapy alone.

All the best,

Joe

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@681

I had TKR in 2020. Good range of motion but getting up from a chair or coming up stairs still hurt. In 2021 I did more therapy to hopefully break up scar tissue but to no avail. My surgeon was hesitant to open the knee up before a year had passed hoping it would go away. Also a lot of noise on standing. 2 weeks ago I underwent surgical scar tissue. They scoped my knee and took out the scar tissue. Doing well most pain is gone still a little tender from the scope.
I will do some PT to help

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681,

Do a LOT of PT to help, under the guidance of a therapist and at home on your own. You don't want the scar tissue to come back.

Joe

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