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[TKR] Knee Buckling

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Recovery Area' started by jeney, Aug 14, 2010.

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  1. jeney

    jeney New Member

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    I had a total right knee replacement in September 08 - 2 years ago. I am 71 years of age, and fairly active. Throughout the past 2 years my knee has felt at least 75% better than before the replacement, but not as good as I expected. Mr. Doctor just tells me to take Naproxen. In the past 6 months I have notice my knee buckeling 2 or 3 times a day. Never enough to cause me to fall, but definitely enough to cause me to reach out to grab something. My biggest concern is that this will increas and one day I will fall. Has anyone else expreienced this problem after knee replacement?
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  2. Jamie

    Jamie Administrator

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    Jeney....has your doctor offered any suggestion as to why your knee would buckle like that? It doesn't seem right to me. I would seek at least one (maybe more) opinion from another knee surgeon....one who has absolutely no connections with your current doctor.

    Since you say you are "fairly active," I'm assuming there is not a muscle weakness problem. Are you able to move about and do your normal activity with no problem other than this? How about going up and down stairs?
  3. jeney

    jeney New Member

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    I have not spoken to my docktor about my knee buckling. I guess because I don't want him to suggest a revision, or anything that would involve another surgery. No muscle weakness. I do most of my normal activities but slower. Going up and down stairs is slow, mainly because I do not have stairs in my house and rarely come across that situation. When I need to use stairs I can go up easily, but am slower going down. I take water pool exercises every morning. I feel that should be beneficial. I have been doing that for at least 10 years.
  4. Jamie

    Jamie Administrator

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    You are right that the water exercises are good for you.

    Well, it's certainly up to you, but if it was me....I would at least have it checked out. At least you would know what's going on. If the only way to resolve he problem is surgery, you could make the decision as to whether to do that or just live with things the way they are. But in my opinion, you need to know the facts so you can make an informed decision....even if that decision is to do nothing right now.
  5. Weezy

    Weezy Graduate

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    Hmmmm....doesn't sound like something that should be happening two years out. Jamie's right--a trip to a different doc sounds in order. You can't make the right decision for yourself without knowing what is really happening and why.

    If your muscles weren't quite as strong as they should be, then that would seem logical. But daily water exercises should take care of that. I had that problem after my LTKR because the surgeon had cut the muscles. Didn't stop that sudden buckling/slipping feeling for about 6 months when my muscles were finally starting to really strengthen again. I hated that--would be walking along just fine then whammo, my knee would buckle. It kind of felt like it was slipping inside the skin because my muscles couldn't hold it. I know it wasn't really slipping, that was just the sensation.

    Weezy
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  6. Tykey

    Tykey Forum Advisor

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    If you don't get it investigated, then you (and we) could only guess.
  7. Josephine

    Josephine Forum Admin and Mother Hen Administrator

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    You got that right, Tykey!
  8. kneesrus

    kneesrus Sr Bonesmartie

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    Hi Jeney
    One of the misconceptions is, water exercises increases your strength. Water is great to exercise in when you are have difficulty putting weight on your leg, or even moving your knee. Unfortunately we have to live with gravity. It takes great strength to move you leg against gravity then it is to move your leg in water.
    Another factor is, as we age we loose muscle strength. Just walking around does not strengthen you legs. In your case, a good example you refere to is, that you are cautious going down stairs. Your thigh muscles work harder controlling your body going down stairs than going upstairs.
    No medicine will correct this problem.
    Now, for the good news. I agree with other posts, have it looked at by another MD.
    Have the MD measure your thigh girth and to check your muscle strength manually. If it is lack of strength is the problem, this will validate the fact.
    If it is lack of muscle strength, go back to your thigh exercises and improve your strength. I feel this will solve your condition.
    Best of luck,
    David
    L TKR 12/19/07 and still doing thigh exercises to prevent buckling.
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  9. skigirl

    skigirl Moderator

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    I totally agree with David. I think you need to go to an excellant Physical therapist for some work on your quad muscles. pool exercise and just walking around are not enough to keep them working properly. Have a therapist show you how to build up the muscles and keep them strong. Kelly
  10. skigirl

    skigirl Moderator

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    i agree with David, completely. Knee buckling is a clear sign of quad muscle weakness. I think you should ask your doc for a referral to an excellant pt. They can show you how to build up your quads and how to keep them strong. It is a solvable problem.

    I think that most people underestimate the amount of exercise they will have to keep up to make sure the knees remain strong. Water exercises should be alternated with exercises in the gym to build muscles. I use the pool to relax---but, you need gravity to help you build up your muscles.

    Also, many older people (like me!! I am 66) do not eat enough protein--- check your diet too. The muscles will not stay strong without a proper diet too. I think you will enjoy making your leg stronger since it will solve your problem!! Kelly
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  11. Jamie

    Jamie Administrator

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    That's an excellent point about protein, Kelly. Diet is SO important!!!

    I have so many friends who worry constantly about fat in their diet and consequently won't eat much meat...even LEAN meat! Then they wonder why their muscles are non-existent!!! But they sure tank up on Diet Coke....now THERE'S a "health food."
  12. cotton1958

    cotton1958 Supremo

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    Good points from Kelly. From my experience, I have to keep up my excercise or my hip flexer gets weak.

    Also in rehab, they noticed I wasn't ordering enough protein, so I notice I feel a lot better when I do include protein in my diet, strangely enough.
  13. skigirl

    skigirl Moderator

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    Jamie,

    You are so right--we are one of the richest countries in the world, yet folks here have horrible diets. Recently I ate dinner with a woman who was on the Atkins diet. She ordered some chicken wings--a huge pile of them and then did not eat the string beans that came with it. When I asked her if I could have them, she told me tha they had too many "carbs" and she did not eat vegetables because of that. I almost choked!!! By the way, she washed down the wings with two Diet Coke's!!!

    I have found that Aristotle was right---temperance in all things. I never eat any "fat free" foods---I simply eat less of high fat things. So, a tablespoon of sour cream is enough. And, I do not touch diet soft drinks---I think they make you crave sugar and I think they are really bad for your bladder. Kelly
  14. Susie-Q

    Susie-Q Member

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    That's bizarre, I was on Atkins about 9 years ago and green beans were totally fine to eat, that is one of the totally acceptable vegetables, as is salad...... She must be doing it her own way and is making changes.....
  15. old goat

    old goat Senior

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    This is exactly what I am facing now 6 months out. I think the honeymoon is over. What's going on? This is what I am wondering. The last knee replacement just did not go as well as I wanted. Think I will go back to my doctor for a more comprehensive visit. Thanks again Bone Smart.
  16. goodasnew

    goodasnew Graduate

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    I agree that exercise is key to keeping these knees working well. While nursing TKR2 over the past few weeks my first TKR has 'buckled' a few times and I've put it down to quad muscle weakness. Once I was able to get moving with the second knee, going to the gym, walking properly and walking further the problem disappeared.

    Get some advice from your PT on quad strengthening and I'm sure this will help you.:thumb: Let us know how you get on.
  17. old goat

    old goat Senior

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    Sometimes I am not always sure this is really it. I do walk a lot. I have kept a pedometer to see how much even. There is one specific spot that hurts at times. If you were looking dead on at my knee it would be like a 5 on the clock. It does seem strange to me this far out that it will still be warm and swollen at the end of the day, or even by noon most of the time. I still HAVE to ice every day to be functional the next day. I do still take pain pills about once a week and use tylenol, and advil along with celebrex every day. I take aleve sometimes too. This all just doesn't seem right. I cannot in any way bend the right knee and put pressure on it like you would in going up stairs. This just doesn't seem right at all. I don't really complain, I have so much to be thankful for, and the Lord just blesses me and my family each day and I am so thankful for that. But I don't know what to look for right now if there is a problem and how I would know it. Something though, just doesn't seem right. ideas???
  18. Donnarae59

    Donnarae59 Junior Member

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    I am having the same trouble with knee buckling, and my surgery was in June of this year also, like everyone is saying on here more PT to strengthen the muscles, well I have been going to PT since July, and mine is just getting worse, I fell the other day, knee just gave away big time just so happen I was close to my sofa. I have an hen egg on side of incision, but PT tells me this will go away with therapy, I have tried to get into see my dr sooner than my appointment, but they say he is so booked up I have to wait till the 16th of Dec. As for pain, nighttime, is the worse, from hip to knee and I am still taking pain meds of Lortab 7.5/325. I had my surgery to rid me of knee buckling, and still have it, as for going up and down steps, one at a time, IF I use them. I am disspointed with my surgery, how some can go thru it with no problem and go on there way, I was hoping to be one of those, but seems I'm not.
    Hope your knee gets better and you do need to see a dr about it.
    I can't wait to hear what mine has to say, I can hear him now, everything looks good, just take more PT...:hissyfit: ..Good luck with yours..
  19. goodasnew

    goodasnew Graduate

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    I think most of us have these issues during the first year and I believe it's true that it will take a year before things really are healed. Also as the nerves are reconnecting and you get less numbness maybe you can just feel the pain which is still there but couldn't feel before because of the numbness:scratch: does that make sense?? My 10 month old first tkr still gives me odd pain now and then, it's not enough to worry me but it's still there occasionally, mostly around the kneecap but it doesn't stop me doing anything and definitely feels better with activity!

    It's a confusing recovery, with many ups and downs but looking at the longer term most people eventually become painfree and active! :thumb:
  20. RestAssured

    RestAssured Forum Advisor

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    Knee buckling was the first thing I noticed. Went to see the revision specialist and he said, the muscles and tendons were weak from the infection. Well, 16 months later, they are stong as an ox, and the bones are staying in place. Problem now.... when I turn over in bed something "pops" and I am in excrutating pain for about 5 minutes and then it goes away! Most frustrating! Oh well. I guess the doc would suggest more exercises.:snork:
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