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Author Topic: Please be honest  (Read 1937 times)

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Please be honest
« on: May 05, 2005, 04:42:11 PM »
I've just come home form hospital, had arscothropy(cant spell) to shave torn cartilage and remove cyst, physio came in after op and was alarmed at how stiff leg is, knee will not bend and will not straighten, didn't have this problem before going in for surgery, it feels like there is problem around patella tendon area and and basically its stopping knee from movement, can this be due to swelling, I have super size bandage to drain the fluid but the pain is unbearable hthey gave me super strenght painkiller as first ones didnt work and this hasn't worked, when I went in I had the usual clicking on bending and other kinda pains I've come out completely immboile I cna't even straighten my leg to put it on a chair and rest there is just no point where the pain subsides and cant bend it or anything.

Am seeing physio in the morning and if it is real bad they said they will call the surgeon back.

Woul dbe so grateful if somene can tell me if this ir nomal sometimes for this procedure as physio has worried me!

Offline Beauzer

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Re: Please be honest
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2005, 07:04:25 PM »
You're going to be stiff and sore for a while after the scope.  That's normal.  How much varies from person to person.  Swelling certainly inhibits ROM though.

good luck,
32 - R knee gone to hell
lat. meniscus 94
ACL, chondroplasty 98
Chondroplasty 99
Screw fell out into joint, med. meniscus, microfracture 99
MCL/med. capsule recon, med. meniscus 00
Chondroplasty 04
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Offline Studb

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Re: Please be honest
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2005, 08:10:11 AM »
Hang in there matey.  Early post op stuff is certainly painful and uncomfortable for some.  Make sure they adequatly medicate you.  The physio should start the ball rolling.  If there is a problem your'e in the right place to get immediate attention.

Stuart Baptist
B.Sc (Hons) Physiotherapy
Total Physio Centres

Offline Heather M.

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Re: Please be honest
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2005, 08:01:24 PM »
Definitely don't panic.  As Danielle said, extreme inflammation can really keep your leg from working properly.  And your quad muscles can actually shut down due to pain--your body is very smart, and it's not into hurting itself!  So your brain knows things are swollen, knows things aren't being managed pain-wise, and it has likely just clamped things down in response to protect the joint.  The effusion (swelling) around the joint is part of your body's immune and healing response, but it should be investigated why you are having SO MUCH swelling--are they giving you injections for it?  Is the swelling inside the knee joint, where it might be aspirated and removed (leaving you much relieved) or is it in the leg and quad muscle itself?  Or all of the above?

I had extreme swelling after arthroscopic debridement for an infection.  I was given Toradol injections every 8 hours, which helped immensely for the pain and swelling both.  It's a very powerful anti-inflammatory that is usually only used in the hospital setting, but I believe it can be given by home care nurses or in the doctor's clinic.  Effective pain management is also critical--what are the painkillers you are taking (brand name AND the medical words below, e.g. I'm taking Percocet, which is also called oxycodone as a generic name).  And you really should urge to be placed in a CPM machine--it's a continuous passive motion machine, which gently cradles your leg and VERY SLOWLY and steadily bends and straightens the leg with no effort whatsoever from you.  This keeps your pain down and helps keep fluids from accumulating in the joint.  This is a critical therapy when dealing with a 'frozen knee' and I would ask to speak to the surgeon immediately to hear his/her position on this machine.  It seems to be more commonly used in the US than UK, but having had a severely frozen knee in the past--and being four weeks post-op right now with a heavy, swollen knee joint--I can't tell you how much it's helped me.  Beg, borrow, steal if you have to.  Get that machine.  Barring that, ask for physical therapy 3-4 times per day so that the therapist can passively move your leg for you.  It may only bend an inch or so at first--keep at it.

Also, I would think it would be critical to understand WHY you are having so much pain and swelling.  Has your doctor ruled out an infection or blood clot?  THese are things that can be dealt with or ruled out, leaving you able to recover better.

Anyway, what's done is done--the surgery was performed and you're having swelling.  Now it's time to push the doctor to treat your situation.  It may well be worthwhile to wait a few days to see if your body's swelling can resolve itself, and that's fine.  But also push for treatment to help things along:  anti-inflammatories, more effective pain relief, CPM, regular physical therapy (multiple times per day) to help get the joint moving.  There are minor procedures like aspiration (needle used to remove fluid from the knee, relieving the pressure) and even a newer one called an insufflation.  This is something my doctor does in the very early post-op stages when the patient is having a lot of pain and swelling that isn't an infection or blood clot.  In an insufflation, the knee capsule is filled with sterile solution under pressure, just like is done during an arthroscopy.  Only instead of inserting surgical instruments once the joint is inflated with the water, the surgeon leaves the fluid in the joint under pressure for about 5-10 minutes, after putting in as much as he/she can.  Leaving the fluid in there helps stretch out the knee capsule and break up any early, wispy bits of scar tissue that might be in there.  Then, the surgeon takes a large gauge needle and draws out all the fluid in the knee, measuring it to seem how much went in and how much is coming out.  This is all done under a general anesthesia--I had it done and felt FANTASTIC when I woke up.  The relief was incredible, and I went straight from the OR to physical therapy.  So that's a possibility to discuss with your surgeon as well. But perhaps it's premature, and your surgeon will want to watch for a few days to see what your knee is going to do.

Don't lose hope, there are some people who just respond very poorly to surgery.  It will get better and you will get the knee moving, hopefully with the help of the PT and some medical interventions like anti-inflams and a CPM.  Be sure infection and blood clot are ruled out, then focus on getting the pain under control and keeping the joint moving.

Please keep us posted each day so we can follow your progress.

Scope #1: LR, part. menisectomy w/cyst, chondroplasty
#2-#5: Lysis of adhesions/scar tissue, AIR, patellar tendon debridement, infections, MUA, insufflation
#6: IT band release / Z-Plasty, synovectomy, LOA/AIR, chondroplasty
2006 Arthrofibrosis, patella baja


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Re: Please be honest
« Reply #4 on: May 31, 2005, 08:12:44 PM »

Think that is great that your physio has taken an interest in your condition. 

Hopefully, you will have another hands-on assessment by your surgeon tomorrow after the scan to try and find out what is causing all this pain.  Maybe then some decisions can be made regarding your treatment.

Good luck,


Offline amyliz920

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Re: Please be honest
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2005, 10:52:58 AM »
wow, so sorry to hear that you had this many problems after a scope. You talked about getting a machine that moves your leg for you. Is this a CPM machine that they are talking about? If it is PLEASE get it. It is the best thing I have found for recovery. It is a passive motion so your leg muscles arnt fighting it. Someone else said that in a post and it is very true, if your leg is in too much pain your muscles kinda loose connection with your brain and it won't move. IT is important to make sure that someone is staying onto of your care though. I"ve had quite a few scopes and never had problems like this, but will try to throw any of my advice your way. My biggest suggestion is to talk to someone and figure out how you can get that knee to start moving...a CPM is always a good option cause you can do that even when you arn't weight bearing. Good luck.
15 surgeries: 8 meinosectomies, 1 microfracture, 1 ACL repair, 2 scar tissue removals, 2 HTO (high tibial osteotomy), 1 plate removal/cleaning up the knee.
"If at first you don't succed, smile, take a deep breath, and try again"


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Re: Please be honest
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2005, 04:58:50 PM »

Hopefully they will get to the bottom of what is causing these continued problems soon.  If not, I'd be seeking another opinion.

Good luck,