The WAITING ROOM => GENERAL KNEE QUESTIONS and comments (good for new threads) => Topic started by: sgrems on May 08, 2010, 02:13:48 PM

Title: hardware & rehab problems
Post by: sgrems on May 08, 2010, 02:13:48 PM
Hi all,
I just want to get some feedback on hardware issues and rehab. I had a comminuted patella fracture 2/27/10 with screws and figure 8 wire on 3/1/10. Surgeon says in the 20+ years he has been practicing, this is the first of this type of fracture he has ever seen....I like to be original. :P
 I just got out of my brace a week ago and was told 4 weeks prior to that it was the worst of both worlds. The knee needs motion, but too much could damage what has already healed and he didn't want to put too much pressure on the tendon.
To make a long story short, part of the wire is pressing against the top of my knee and may have to be removed when it gets to the point of coming through the skin. The doctor says I can't have the rest of my wire removed for 18 months but I really feel it is  a major reason for the pain I have. I can only get to 72 degrees and I'm at 9 weeks. It is very stiff and the more I use it, the more swollen it gets so I can only do short bursts of exercises and then I have to ice.. I have been diagnosed with arthrofibrosis by the surgeon but I feel part of it is due to muscle spasm and contracture also so I guess I have a few things going on. I would like to hear from others who had wire and ROM issues. I'm getting pretty discouraged at this point and am going back to work in 2 days.
I have printed off the arthrofibrosis rehab and will take that with me to PT next week so they can instruct me as to what I can do.  Thanks for any info or support you can give
Title: Re: hardware & rehab problems
Post by: sheila edwards on June 19, 2010, 06:29:30 PM
hi, i too am aving same probs as you, dont think the injury was the same, as i had a broken displaced patella and a full leg cast.was used i couldnt have just a brace.
but nevertheless i do know what you are going through, i was told i must get the knee bending now but not to do too much at once.
     it seems i do the same exercises over and over, afterwards my leg bends easier,but then 10 minutes after it has just stiffened back up,when i awake in the morning both legs look pretty similar, the bad leg just slightly swollen, but by the end of the day despite all the moving and exercising the bad leg has nearly doubled in size,if this is the same as you are experiencing i tink it must be pretty normal.
please let me know if this is the same as what is happening with you.
all the best.
Title: Re: hardware & rehab problems
Post by: Redhead67 on June 20, 2010, 01:28:59 AM
Hi there, my accident 21st Feb 10 so nearly 4 1/2 months, same wires as you the fig. 8 but the surgeon left the two ends sticking up, (was interstate on holiday when this happened) and screws.  I could scream at times due to be so disabled, can walk but not too far, have lumps on the knee due to the hardware, not happy at all, do my exercises each day but ROM is still only around 60.
My RS surgeon where I live said the wires have to come out, reluctently as its better for them to say 8 to 12 months, no option for me, so Thursday having arthroscopy and wires coming out, said he may leave screw in.
From what I read here the wires are the main problem for the pain and rehab problems. I would hate to have to wait for the wires to come through the skin, that would be horrific.
And hopefully you wont have to wait for 18 months.
One day at a time, hard when one has no patience and wants to be on the go. :D
Good luck
Title: Re: hardware & rehab problems
Post by: Redhead67 on July 09, 2010, 12:43:27 AM
Hi there, yes I had hardware problems, fractured patella in Feb.2010 the wires were causing these hard lumps in the knee and sometimes feltlike a small shock at different movements and touch, just dreadful, reluctently the OS decided to operate and take out the wires and do arthroscopy, this op took place 2 weeks ago, the wires had only been in for 4 1/2 months so I was worried.  Anyway the outcome was the fracture healed, wires removed, screw left in, and lot of work done with arthroscopy.
I really dont know how you can put up with this and wait for 18 months before wire removal, its cruel.
The last two weeks Ive had lots of pain and swelling and my knee to ankle were badly bruised.  Starting to come good, lots of exercise to get that knee moving.
Hope this helps you and even though we are all different, maybe you could push a bit for the wire removal.
Take care - healing rays coming your way
Title: Re: hardware & rehab problems
Post by: sgrems on October 12, 2010, 02:38:14 AM
Hi all..
I haven't been on in a very long time....trying to live my life despite the knee. I am scheduled for wire removal and MUA on 11/9/10. woot!! woot!! I have never looked so forward to any surgery before like I do this one. The OS says the screws will have to stay in, but I'm hoping he'll change his mind about that too.  The fx has healed so why leave anything in??

I only ever got to 103 degrees and I'm sure I've lost some extension  even though I've been trying to exercise at home.   I couldn't work on any more ROM until the hardware came out and  I began having more pain instead of less. Part of the problem may be a weak VM muscle (information obtained from the forum..thanks guys)  as it started hurting about 2 months after surgery but no one has given me a clue as to why. I think I can feel my patella shift and I have ALOT of pain on the inner underside of the patella when straightening my leg. There are so many reasons, I can't begin to venture a real guess.  Rough bone, hardware, weak VM muscle and I don't expect to get answers from this OS so I'll just wait and see how I progress after the hardware removal and go from there.

Lesley, thanks for the thoughts and I'm glad you are doing better...I hope it's continuing to do well.

Sheila..sorry I never got back to you and I certainly hope you are doing better now.  The stiffness is something that will take time. My leg still stiffens up walking down the hall although I just had it bent at least 95 degrees 3 minutes prior....keep the faith and try to move forward are the only words I can give anyone at this point.

I thank everyone here for their support and encouragement because we all need it at different times during this process. Lostpirate and Ian have been most helpful and informative...I wouldn't have gotten this far without your words of hope.

Rick, I have read your posts and I applaud your strength and determination.  I was slightly banged up and chipped my elbow and thought I had a hard time getting around! Good luck to you!

Take care everyone and I'll keep you posted.  I'll have time to post while recuperating. 
Title: Re: hardware & rehab problems
Post by: Redhead67 on October 13, 2010, 02:41:24 AM
Roll on November 9th, I wish you a speedy recovery.  Hope they can take the screws out for you.  I have 1 screw left in there,the OS left it in because that was the weakest part at the 4 1/2 month operation to take out the wires.  The way Im feeling about my knee is that screw may have to come out sometime in the future.  Mind you I realise why it was left in there, so Im hoping you have healed well enough for them to be removed at the same time as the wires, fingers crossed.