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Knee pain,(continuing) after Total Knee Replacement
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Knee pain,(continuing) after Total Knee Replacement

I had total knee replacement surgery 10 weeks ago and am still experiencing significant knee pain, consisting of stiffness and alot of pain in the knee.  The pain wakes me up at night.  I am going to Physical Therapy 3 times a week and I still do alot of therapy myself at home.  I walk, and try to go about my daily routine, but the pain is still there,, some days worse than others.  I also had a three disc fusion done in January,, 2007.  It is now classified as Failed Back Syndrome, so I have that pain also to deal with.  What do I do?  My surgeon took x-rays when I was at my 8 week check up and the x-rays showed everything looked good.  Why am I still have such significant pain?  I just dont understand.

Thanks
Cookie60


This discussion is related to On-going Pain after Knee replacement surgery.
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Avatar_f_tn
Total knee replacements take time to heal properly. Trust me, I have had both knees replaced and know many other with arthritis, bot osteo and rhematoid that have had knee replacement as well. Each of us heal in our own time frame but the general length of time for all to be really right again seems to be around 5 - 6 months.  At three months, which was what I was told I should be doing well, I still had a lot of PT and work to do. It truly was six months before i said dang, this is great and lets do the other one because all the hard work paid off.

Some people heal quicker than others so take the little improvements day by day, they add up. If you have RA that can slow it down too as sometimes the immune system just likes the knees despite the replacement parts.

Do the PT faithfully and doggedly and you will gain your range of motion back. Persistence does pay with replacements. Don't get discouraged. Our bodies heal and each of us are a bit different. I do have to say though, doctors shouldn't tell us it only takes a few months. If the x-rays show all is in place and in good shape it is just a matter of time. Look at it this way, is the pain worse than before or less and getting Better?

Good luck and let us know how it progresses.
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Avatar_f_tn
Oh, forgot to say, when you have pain in the knee since you said some days it is worse than others and you try to go about your daily routine, pain can be a sign that you have done a bit too much a little too soon. Rest the knee and evaluate what it is that may have been a bit too much so you can not push the knee too far too soon. Rest a bit when it hurts but don't forget the PT either.
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Avatar_n_tn
I first had a total knee replacement in 1988.That knee Re. was because of an accdident, but it was so good I litteraly wore it out in 5 years. I had my secound replacement on the same knee in 1994. It wasn't as good as the first, but there was no pain, it lasted untill 2008 and finally wore out and I had to have another replacement. At the same time I learned I had lumbar spinal stenosis. I believe the stenosis is causing me to have considerable pain. In my knee,my quad and my groin area. I plan to have an x- stop surgery percedure for spinal stenosis. Hopeing that will take the pain away.The pain is mostly in my knee, so you that have pain in the prosthiesis might look in to the possibility of spinal stenosis,causing that pain
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Avatar_f_tn
I HAD MY FIRST TOTAL KNEE REPLACMENT IN 2008 THEN HAD A TOTAL KNEE REPLACEMENT WITH A HINGED KNEEIN 2008 THEN AGAIN IN 2009 I HAD A TOTAL KNEE REPLACEMENT REVISION AND TODAY I STILL HAVE SEVERE KNEE PAIN MY KNEE FEELS WEIRD AND GIVES OUT LIKE CRAZY IT WAKES ME UP EVERY NIGHT I'M ON PAIN KILLERS AND SLEEPING PILLS NOTHING WORKS DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY GOOD IDEAS I CAN'T TAKE THE PAIN MUCH LONGER. PLEASE RESPOND TO ***@**** WITH ANY OINFO YOU CAN GIVE ME.
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Avatar_m_tn
My name is Peyton Haggan I had both of my knees replaced as well, and today still have pain in both. I'm a retired Air Force with 23 years of honorable service, and knees is why I had to retire. My knees hurt me it don't matter what I'm doing. I can't stand up long, no walking no more than 60-70 feet, no bending, no running, no anything cause my knees to pain, and the only thing that helps is to stay off my legs. I'm still on pain killers to help with the pain, thought I was the only one who still in pain after total knee replacement. I see now after doing some searching on the internet I'm not the only one, that have the same problem with pain after knee replace surgery. So I can truly
say that their is no resolve to pain we all suffer from knee replacement surgery. I have not work in almost three years now, and it soully because of my knees. My knees is hurting me right now as I type this message to every who still suffers knee pain after knee replacement surgery.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi Peyton, unfortunately for both of us, it brought me comfort to read your post.  I had one knee joint replaced 9 months ago and I am in so much pain I can hardly walk.  My only relief is pain meds and sitting or lying down.  I am a very active 55 yr old, with a 6 week old grandson.  I do EVERYTHING in pain, like you, even as I type this reply.  Ice, heat, pt, bring no relief.  I am also not working, just because of my knees.  Have been a registered nurse for 20 years.  I realized when most of my patients felt better than I did, it was time to go.  Just pray that each new day will bring me some healing.  Out of resources.  I am thankful to be alive, but some days activities have almost come to a halt. So glad this site is available.
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Avatar_f_tn
i had knee surgery in march about 9 weeks ago ,oh my my dull ache in knee and if i walk or stand too long during day i pay for it at night especially  when i try to sleep,i rub rub it but nothing works and don;t put ice pack right on knee the cold makes it hurt terribly!sometimes i wish i didn;t do it!
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Avatar_m_tn
Thank you for your comment. It also makes me feel better.  After ten weeks I am still in pain, can't stand for long or walk far. Still tired, probably due to broken sleep. I really believed I would be ok in 6-12 weeks which seems to be the guide. I am in no way ready to go back to work which is teaching. I feel Ike a parasite and am really over the whole thing.
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Avatar_m_tn
You are not alone. I had TKR last december. After 5th month, I am still having pain. Went back to surgeon, did X-ray and MRI. MRI showed some type of cyst and fluid is draining inside the joint. Waiting for callback from the surgeon about next course of action. I cannot walk more than 1 block, sharp pain starts immediately. Still on painkiller, taking about 6-8 a day. X-ray showed no sign of dislocation and surgeon was not sure what is causing this pain. Hopefully, something positive will happen and get relief from the pain,
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Avatar_m_tn
My turn, I am 60 and an athlete who had knee surgery In February. I am doing well but the outside of my knee (tendons?) hurts a lot when I walk. I use the stationary bike 30-60 minutes daily and exercise but take pain meds when the pain is severe. I am going to try acupuncture to see if I can find relief. Has anyone done this?

MM
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Avatar_f_tn
I just had my knee replacement 6 weeks ago, I have gone through it all with no pain meds, I can not take anything but Advil, Tylenol, it was and is a very tuff recovery, I can not sleep at night, I feel my knee locks on me, no matter which way I sleep, on my back or side, I wake up every two hours in pain. I wonder if anyone has any ideas on how I can sleep just one full night. I am so miserable. Thanks. Sally
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Hi Sally,

Have you tried sleeping with a pillow between your legs to keep everything aligned while on your side?
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Avatar_f_tn
Should I still need pain meds after 8 weeks?? I am still in pain can' sleep at night.

Babsone
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Avatar_m_tn
Had replacement in 2008.  No problems no pain,  I do not know why some have so much pain for so long.  Ready to do second one at 70 years of age
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Avatar_f_tn
Oh my goodness I'm so excited to see that I'm not loosing my mind. I had total knee replacement in 11/13 I had good ROM doing home PT went out to PT and started going backwards with the PT telling me if I don't bend more they may have to manipulate my knee. I'm in such horrible pain at night that I sit up in bed rocking and crying. I try to go on with daily living. I'm packing to move and I do climb the steps at least twice a day. I'm on Percocet which I HAVE to have as suggested. My Dr told me I had scar tissue building because of restricted moving of the knee. This seriously has me depressed and over it. If anyone have any suggestions PLEASE HELP ME!!
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Avatar_f_tn
I had knee replacement on 11/05.  Pain was what I expected. I am still on pain medication and ice pack.  I cannot stand or walk very long and sometime it hurts to elevate my knee.  My insurance does not pay for PT and do not have the funds either.  I see my doctor on 12/19 for another follow-up.  So far the x-ray shows everything is in the right place except that my range of motion is not quite 90%.  The only hope I have is my sister-in-law is a massage therapist and is working on the scar tissue, she thinks the scar tissue is causing a lot of my problems.  I am having very sharp pain shooting through my knee and the doctor doesn't know what is causing the pain.  
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I have not had knees replaced, I've had hips replaced, which IMO is a whole different experience. However I know people personally who have had knee replacement surgery, and at less than two months post-op were still having to plow through significant pain in their PT. Knees take a long, long time to heal, and diligent PT is CRITICAL for a good outcome. I knew someone who didn't do his PT because he thought it hurt too much, and and ended up worse off than before the surgery. My father in law had both knees done, stick with his PT, and no is back to dancing and golfing with his wife.

Knee replacement isn't for sissies! I hope I never have to have mine done! Leanne, it's horrifying to me that your insurance will pay for a replacement but not for PT?? What's up with that? Have you checked with your provider to see if they have an appeals process? Maybe your doctor can go to bat for you.
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Avatar_f_tn
I had a knee replacement on October 1st and have been in pain since. I get a shooting pain that is like an electrical shock.  I have a constant throbbing pain where the meniscus used to be and my muscles just feels as if my knee is going to collapse. I feel that it is a struggle just to get out of bed every morning.  I sometimes still have to use the walker. I just turned 60 and feel like I am 90. I had to be put back under for a manual manipulation Nov 21. I was able to bend the knee to 120 degrees for only 2 days and then it was back to 80-85 degrees.  My doctor took X-rays and told me that it looks perfect and doesn't understand why I am so much pain. I have even tried an acupuncturist, but nothing has significantly helped.  My doctor just started me on 2 new medicines that are starting to help me: Etodolac 2xdaily and Nucynta 50mg 1 tablet every 6 hours. This medicine is quite expensive, but look on the internet with a coupon to only pay $25.00 . Today at physical therapy I was at 109 degrees, but I am hurting bad tonight.  I never even gave it a thought as to how much it was going to hurt.  I just thought that I would get better.  Guess I have to remember that my knee was amputated and then replaced.  I just hope that this knee replacement will be a success and pain free. Happy I found this sight.  I was feeling as if I was the only one feeling this way!
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From what I've heard from patients who've had successful knee surgery, still having pain at 2-3 months post-op is pretty normal. They key to long term success is to keep pushing through the pain with the PT sessions. It's not fun, it's not pleasant, and sometimes you'll feel like you're sliding backwards, but a year from now you'll be glad you stuck with it. My father in law had both knees done and has done very well. He still has some aches, but nothing like it was, and he's back to ballroom dancing, biking, golf, etc. Before surgery he was using a TENS unit and ice packs every day; now he doesn't need those any more. Hang in there!
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Avatar_f_tn
You sound like me a year ago. I had TKR on my left in July 2012, was told scar tissue was stopping my bend, so October I had a manipulation done. Yes I could bend it but the leg was weaker. I had trouble rising from a chair. Then this year I had my right knee done even though the left still hurt. I worked real hard in PT at home, I can bend my knee, I can walk but the pain is terrible especially at night. I'm 11 weeks out and still in PT. Wake up at night in pain, I saw the Doctors PA who said I had a deficiency so I went to a DO who gave me high levels of vitamins. Yesterday I couldn't get up out of a chair cause it had no arms for me to use to left myself. Today, the doctors office refused pain meds cause I don't fit into their schedule of pain management, spent the day in the bathroom cause the vitamins made me sick and my whole leg hurts cause of the struggle of trying to get out of the chair.  I had to wait until someone came into the room. Who do we see after the surgeon is through with us?  Mayo Clinic? Johns Hopkins?  Where do we go from here everybody?  My dad has stayed alive with an artificial heart valve for 20 years, I can't believe someone doesn't know how to help TKR patients with pain and complete recovery.
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm approaching my 2 month point after a TKR.  The first 4 weeks I was showing progress and continued physical therapy, although started regressing by week five.  Last week my Dr did the manipulation and my mobility hasn't improved, not to mention the pain and swelling.  I'm still going for physical therapy another two weeks.   Thank you so much for your comments.  I've felt so discouraged to the point of being depressed wanting my "life" back to normal and stop taking pain pills.  I understand from your comments, I need to be patient and give myself time to heal.  Thank you so much!!!!   HBeth
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