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Author Topic: How to stop limping?  (Read 4571 times)

Offline Amanda

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How to stop limping?
« on: December 22, 2004, 06:44:03 AM »
Hi guys
I am 5 weeks post op (partial meniscectomy).  Am trying to shake my limp.  But finding it very hard.  Any tips?  When I put my leg out to take a step I notice that it doesnt straighten fully (though I can if I try while sitting, laying etc) like the other one.  Any ideas how to help?
R Lateral horizontal cleavage tear and cyst 1997
Partial meniscectomy 18/07/03
Cyst resolved after 3 months
Re-tear 7/8/2004
2nd partial meniscectomy 12/11/04
Hardened meniscus with 40% left

Offline islandgirl2

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Re: How to stop limping?
« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2004, 07:24:22 AM »
I limp too and I'm 5 weeks post op.  Actually, today I looked at myself in the mirror and wondered when I'd be able to straighten up and walk without a limp.

Hope someone can help us.

Offline pegleg78

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Re: How to stop limping?
« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2004, 02:38:06 AM »
One big factor in getting rid of your limp is having full extension. You need to work on getting your extion back. You can do that by having you leg straight and placing your ankle on a rolled up towel so your knee is hanging. let it stay there for a while, and if needed you can genly push down on your knee to help it get all of the extension back.
When you walk remember to walk heal to toe. Go slow and place you heal on the floor first and push off from you toes.
99 ACL, med, lat men repair
00 Med menisectomy, lat men repair
01 med, lat meniscus transplant, ACL rev, LR
01 chrondroplasty, manip & debrid
02 med, lat partial menisectomy
03 Arthrotomy,  LOA, LR
05 chrondroplasty, lat men repair, shrink ACL
05  med menisectomy, chrondropla
05 med PKR

Offline libertynm

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Re: How to stop limping?
« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2004, 03:41:07 AM »
I'm 15 days post op and have similar difficulty with my gait (although I'm still using my crutches with partial weight bearing).  I also have complete passive extension.  

However, when I walk forward, I feel like I need to activate my quads in order to straighten my leg.  Perhaps walking requires active extension.  I've also tried walking backwards and found that to be much easier as the straightest leg position doesn't seem to require much activation of the quad muscle.

My strategy is to keep working on those quads and to practice walking indoors a few times each day.  I'm not a PT, but I started working on my gait last night when I realized that I was walking on either a completely straight (muscles limp and swinging leg to the side to get through) or a completely bent (hamstrings at work and leg passing directly beneath me) leg.  Today, I had just a couple of almost normal steps (among many not so normal steps) and it took a lot of quad effort.  When I saw this thread, I thought that I should share my observation/experience.

All the best to you all and happy holidays!
ACL allograft - 12/07/04

Offline kath

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Re: How to stop limping?
« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2004, 04:18:52 AM »
Hi..I'm 7 weeks post-op PKRs both knees.  I have almost full extension on my left leg, but my right leg is still bent when walking (due to years of OA).  In physio, I can extend almost fully when contracting my quads, but not enough to carry me through walking.  I walk by swinging my right leg from my hip out to the side.

Here's one of the best exercises the physiotherapist has given me to try...keep in mind you should check with your own PT before doing this:

Lie on your stomach with your feet hanging over the end of the bed.  A heating pad is placed on the hamstrings of the affected leg and a weight 2.5lbs added to the ankle of the affected leg.  RELAX.  The hamstrings should start stretching enough to allow gravity to pull your foot down, straightening your leg.  I do this everyday, and along with regular quad contractions where you "push" the back of your knee into the bed, have found it to be very helpful.  

Another good hamstring stretch to get extension is to sit on the bed with one leg on the floor and the other stretched out in front of you.  Straighten your spine to perfect posture and you should feel the stretch in your hamstrings.

I find I have to consciously remind myself when walking to extend fully...hopefully with the exercises it will start to come naturally!

Hope these help!  Kath
Bi-lateral unicompartmental Nov 2004

Offline islandgirl2

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Re: How to stop limping?
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2004, 08:11:50 AM »
Thanks Kath, I will try your suggestions.  If you have any more tips from your PT please share them.

I'm no longer going to PT (after just six visits) beause he was pushing me too hard, and I ended up with lower back pain that became unbearable.  No matter how much I complained, he felt that I needed to push more!  

The OS was NO help.  I asked what I should do and he said 'the bike, and maybe water exercises.'  I do hate when people say to check with your OS because you'd be surprised at how unwilling some of them are to advise you.  

Offline KWR

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Re: How to stop limping?
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2004, 01:25:31 AM »
I'm 3 weeks post op for chondroplasy & partial menisectomy (12/9) and today is my first day without my cane. I try really hard to concentrate while walking very slowly to try to stand straight and not limp, but my leg is just so weak. Am doing my exercises, but my knee will just give out at times and I limp. I'm encouraged even with the swelling that I can tell I will be able to flex my knee eventually which I had not been able to do for at least 6 months prior to my surgery due to the tear. Have only been to PT once, had a problem on 12/23 with a clot and ended up in the ER to have it drained, so I have had some set-backs. Will resume regular PT 3 times a week next week. Seems like no one is really given scoop on just how long this recovery period takes. I was made to feel like if I wasn't ok in 10 days, I was having a poor recovery. I'm beginning to see I think my recovery is more the norm and those with the 7-10 day recoveriers are medical miracles...

Offline doglady606

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Re: How to stop limping?
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2004, 02:55:42 AM »
I agre that full extension is the key !  :)  I kept asking my PT,"how come I keep limping?" and he said when I got full extension, the limp would get better.  Also, sometimes the limp becomes a habit too.  I think it helps to conciously think of each step for a while, to not limp until it becomes habit, (as long as you don't have pain). I notice that when I get tired, I go back to limping, since it becomes sore and it is easier, and less painful to limp.
July 2004  Scope L. knee meniscus tears repaired(cut away), debridement, complete loss of articluar cartilage in medial compartment
Unispacer implant L. knee Spetember 2004
TKR right knee Nov. 08'

Offline flogs

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Re: How to stop limping?
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2004, 11:37:59 PM »
I have been limping for the most of the last few years since my fall. I found that after my LR post op rehab the pain was getting better and I still found myself limping.

What helped me was concentrating on the treadmill heal and toe on every step. You get so used to limping that you forget how to walk right anymore even when the pain is not there. I also think that the more confidence you have in your knee the easier it will get and before you know it one day you will be walking normal again. It will come in time so don't rush it.
83- arthro (L)
00- arthro (L)
00- Meniscus
01- Gr III Con Patella, Gr IX Fem Con (L)
02-meniscus, microfracture Fem Con (L)
03- Same (L)
03- Same (L)
04- LR,Microfracture
05-menicsus tear, microfracture
06-same Aug 4

JUST CUT IT OFF ALREADY

Offline islandgirl2

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Re: How to stop limping?
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2005, 03:39:12 AM »
Don't rush it... that's something that neither the OS or the therapist said to me.  It seems like they wanted me walking within a week or two ::)

Here I am though almost 7 weeks post op and I'm still in pain, and I limp even when I try my best not to.   I can't even think of having the other knee worked on until I get this one close to normal.