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Author Topic: 6 & Half Weeks Post-Op : I am driving!!!  (Read 15199 times)
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NewMe
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« on: August 16, 2009, 02:55:01 AM »

the tendon behind my left knee hurts as if it were twisted each time I move my leg wrong. This started 2 or 3 days ago.
But seems getting worse today(I did do quite a bit of walking and driving for the first time post-op today). I am so scared to hurt it more such that each time I need to lift or move it, I use my hand to protect the tendon area while lifting the leg. Any suggestion on how I can treat this effectively(beside resting) at home? Do I need to see a Dr?  Thanks in advance for any tips and advises...
« Last Edit: August 16, 2009, 08:14:30 AM by MMT Admin » Logged
sakis
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« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2009, 03:34:48 AM »

what did you lenghten ? tibia or femur ?
which method ?
which doctor?
did you have  bowed legs,or just cosmetic LL like me ?
how much would you like to lengthen ?
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« Reply #2 on: August 16, 2009, 08:15:23 AM »

the tendon behind my left knee hurts as if it were twisted each time I move my leg wrong. This started 2 or 3 days ago.
But seems getting worse today(I did do quite a bit of walking and driving for the first time post-op today). I am so scared to hurt it more such that each time I need to lift or move it, I use my hand to protect the tendon area while lifting the leg. Any suggestion on how I can treat this effectively(beside resting) at home? Do I need to see a Dr?  Thanks in advance for any tips and advises...

Yes, of course you need to see your doctor - who performed the correction for you?
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NewMe
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« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2009, 05:46:37 PM »

Sorry, did not clarify about my op. I did Genu Varum correction at Ladisten in Kiev, Ukraine using a gradual distraction correction method 7 days post-Op similar to LL distraction. I probably gained a quarter inch as a result (my case was not severe). Came back to US last weekend. So cannot see the same Dr for the problem. Also this tendon/ligament area behind knee was problematic for both legs even during the early stage when I was bed-ridden. I was advised this was normal and will get better with time. It did get better. But now, it resurfaced with the vengeance and threatens my recovery.

Starting yesterday afternoon, I go upstairs leading with right leg, so the left can follow with a straight leg. When I go downstairs, I lead with a straight left leg first on each step. Straight leg movement is ok. Walking is not a problem. It is just when I need to lift/move my left leg in a slightly bend fashion utilizing the tendon/ligament, the pain attacks.

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sakis
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« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2009, 07:05:21 PM »

pain attacks is very normal.the best advice is to call your doctor on phone and tell him that (no big deal to call, right? )
will be very usefull if you could write in the forum what he is goin to say about you situation :-)

wish you a fast recovery
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NewMe
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« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2009, 04:20:44 PM »

pain attacks is very normal.the best advice is to call your doctor on phone and tell him that (no big deal to call, right? )
will be very usefull if you could write in the forum what he is goin to say about you situation :-)

wish you a fast recovery

K. The verdict came from the Dr. - I walked too much in one day and need to take it easy. As you said, some pain in the tendon/ligament area is normal. I need to do some exercises, but refrain from excessive walking and the pain will go away. After all, I am still less than 7 weeks post op. Guess cannot run up the hills by next weekend yet  Wink
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NewGuy
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« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2009, 10:39:09 PM »

Hi NewMe,

I just got my fixators off two days ago and the pain in my tendons behind my knees is almost completely gone.  When I woke up this morning and bent my legs, there were no popping sounds/sensations!  Unfortunately, I'm going to have to say this pain of yours won't be relieved until the fixators come off Sad  I had the same problem until the day they were actually removed.

btw, I'm very impressed that you're driving Wink I was too scared to...
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NewMe
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« Reply #7 on: August 19, 2009, 03:36:04 AM »

Hi, you metal free new guy! I am so envious. Thanks to your remark on your tendon pain, I have less to worry about permanent damage to my now very sensitive and 'useless' tendon/ligament behind my left knee. Little worry about the popping right knee either when bending. Still have a month and half to go though before the metals coming off...

Btw, did you just scream and curse or did you get anesthesia for your fixator removal? How long did the removal take?
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NewGuy
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« Reply #8 on: August 19, 2009, 02:51:52 PM »

Haha, anesthesia was a no brainer.  When they started unscrewing the rods, the amount of force they had to use to get them loose was enough to hurt my bones.  I got a general anesthesia from the arm and fell asleep.  I wasn't (and I really couldn't) keep track of time but they said it only took 2 minutes (how is that possible? right??).  Anyway, when I woke up I somehow was able to walk with the help of the anesthesiologist to the recovery room.

hope recovery is going well for you Smiley
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NewMe
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« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2009, 03:21:58 AM »

Almost 8 weeks post Op.

On the one hand, I am doing better. I could walk without the stick crutch for the first time outside for about 30 minutes last Saturday and Sunday though at only 1/3 of my normal speed. I have also driven a few more times. My right leg is getting stronger which is critical in driving ( I am a one-foot driver). I could do most of the rehab leg exercises.

On the other hand, my left leg has become quite a pain in the xxxx due to the persistent ligament problem behind knee. Strictly adhering to the Dr's advise and rested for quite a few days, only to realize this pain is here to stay for a while although I have learnt how not to trigger the pain in most cases. It hurts even when I am yawning if I flex my leg wrong! Now I somewhat drag my left leg in straight fashion when walking. I wake up in the morning feeling great most days (no swollen legs, no pain). Then when I get moving, I feel like a cripple as my left leg could not quite keep up with the right leg in anything & everything.

Made an appointment with a good local Orthopaedic specialist. It will be three weeks before he could see me. Sad
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Tan
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« Reply #10 on: September 29, 2009, 09:31:04 AM »

Hi NewMe

Thanks for sharing your progress, i would love to here an update on how your getting on?
I am considering having this surgey done also but want to be sure of what i will have to go trough.

Tan
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« Reply #11 on: October 05, 2009, 05:43:01 AM »

Hello Tan,

Glad to hear you are considering having this surgery done.  It was a very positive experience for me and I can safely say that my quality of life is much better now. 
It's been about a month and a half since I've had my pins removed and I am walking fine.  I go to college so walking around campus with a backpack constantly is unavoidable but I haven't had any problems.  I have regained full flexibility in my legs (I couldn't squat all the way down several weeks ago) and am tempted to run and jump sometimes.  I'm playing it safe though and waiting another month before I attempt any of that Wink

Best of luck with your considerations!
NewGuy
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NewMe
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« Reply #12 on: October 05, 2009, 06:28:01 AM »

Quote from: Tan link=topic=2679. msg30795#msg30795 date=1254216664
Hi NewMe

Thanks for sharing your progress, i would love to here an update on how your getting on?
I am considering having this surgey done also but want to be sure of what i will have to go trough. 

Tan
Hi Tan,
Sorry it has taken a while to respond.  Was a bit taken back by the erratic, somewhat problematic recovery.  At the same time I want to be fair to Ladestin in the remarks I make.  Before the surgery, I asked Dr Veklich what kind of complications could there be, I was assured 'none'.  It might be true for many others, but for me it does not quite hold true.  Granted, my op was slightly different from the typical ( I will go into the detail in a separate write up ). 

Problem #1, As soon as I could straighten out my legs post op without much pain (about a week or so), I noticed my left leg could not straighten out as much as my right one.  I was told it was ok.  However, to this day, 10 days after my fixators were removed, my left leg still could not straighten out as well as my right leg.  Also when straightening, the knee area, front and back does not feel right.  I attribute this to the fixators.  So I was so relieved when they finally came off (removed by a US Dr 10 days ago).  After a bloody first day and a bit more bleeding the second day, the pin holes started to scab on the 3rd day.

What was disappointing was that after the removal, my legs did not get much relief at all, except there was no metal pins protruding from underneath my pants/skirts.  I could hardly walk 10-15 minutes before I felt pretty uncomfortable and had to stop.  My problematic left knee and the ligament/tendon behind the knee felt they could not straighten out without causing me pain.  This, coupled with swollen legs, made me laying on my sofa whenever I could.  In addition, I notice a 3 inch horizontal bruise mark to the left of my left knee cap which is painful to the touch still.  Going to visit the US Dr for post Op checkup in a few days.  Will share more after that.

The 2nd complications is the popping sound from my right knee when bending.  I noticed this as soon as I could do leg exercise while at the clinic.  Dr Veklich did not think it was a big deal.  For NewGuy, this popping sound stopped after fixators removal.  For me, it did not.  So every day, when I bend my right knee, I hear this crack.  Although there is no pain associated with this noise, I fear someday the pain will come if the cracking does not stop soon.  Hopefully it will go away as I build up my leg muscle strength.

The 3rd complication were the constant pin-site problems.  I had a pin site infection while at the Ladestin clinic (I stayed at Ladestin clinic for 5. 5 weeks), which explained why a leg massage by the physical therapist always caused me mysterious pain.  The nurse had to give me antibiotic shot around the infected pin hole.  It was painful as she must poke me 4 times to cover around the entire area.  I got another shot the day before I left for home.  A few other pin holes also seemed to be heading in the wrong direction.  But the nurse assured me they were OK.  In actuality, this pin site and the others became a constant worry as they take turn getting better for a few days, then breaking up (maybe due to muscle movement from walking/standing) for a few days.  The pain and discomfort was another big reason that slowed down my recovery. 

However, everyone is different.  I met a girl while at the clinic who came in running up and down with the fixators on her legs (3. 5 month post op).  She told me she even wore heels and went dancing with those fixators.  To top it off, she went in to have her fixators removed without any anesthesia! She came to say good bye the next day, showing off her band aids covered legs and then went to catch a flight back home.  Not sure if it makes a difference.  Her correction was done at the time of the op.  Mine was done via a gradual distraction similar to LL. 

In short, my experience is a mixed-bag.  I could drive so quickly and it was just never a problem as my right leg was doing much better than my left from the get-go (except the popping sound).  Yet, overall my progress is not as fast or as trouble free as I thought it could have been. 

I am doing better in the last 2 days.  Took a 30 minutes walk today.  Had to stop twice to massage the tensed up ligament/tendon area behind my left knee though.  Hopefully in a week or so, I can report back with much more encouraging news on my progress.

Let me know if you have additional questions.  I will share all that I can to help you make a informed decision and planning for your op.

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NewGuy
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« Reply #13 on: October 06, 2009, 04:30:33 AM »

Hi NewMe,

Sorry to hear you're going through a bumpy recovery.  I'm surprised the tendon problem didn't go away for you immediately after the pin removal as it did for me  Sad  I do agree that walking was not much easier directly following the removal.  It took about two weeks before I could slowly walk with regular posture. I'm using Medscar for the scar marks and it seems to be working.  Although the scars are still dark reddish-blueish, they are for the most part, flat. Best of luck healing!
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« Reply #14 on: October 06, 2009, 08:17:41 PM »

Sorry to hear that your recovery is rough, but I hope that it improves soon!

Cheers,

MMT
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Tan
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« Reply #15 on: October 08, 2009, 09:47:02 PM »

Hi NewMe

Thank you for your reply.

I hope you start to feel better soon, it sounds like you are having a tough time with the recovery hopefully your doctor can help. 
Can I ask you what else you had done with the bowleg correction? and how many weeks are you post op now?


Tan
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NewMe
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« Reply #16 on: October 18, 2009, 03:42:37 PM »

Quote from: NewGuy link=topic=2679. msg31096#msg31096 date=1254803433
Hi NewMe,

Sorry to hear you're going through a bumpy recovery.   I'm surprised the tendon problem didn't go away for you immediately after the pin removal as it did for me  :(  I do agree that walking was not much easier directly following the removal.   It took about two weeks before I could slowly walk with regular posture.  I'm using Medscar for the scar marks and it seems to be working.   Although the scars are still dark reddish-blueish, they are for the most part, flat.  Best of luck healing!

Hi NewGuy,

Thanks for your good wishes and tip on scar care.  I am actually improving quite a bit since last post, especially my left leg.  Yesterday I wore some heels(not high) to an event and then shopping afterward over the course of a few hours.  Seemed ok.  The popping right knee also is doing better although not gone.  The left leg lower pin-site scar where I had infection seemed to have left the biggest scar and a hard bump.  Will see if time will cure it.  Not sure if you are completely back to normal with all activities.  I cannot run or do full knee bend yet.

Quote from: Tan link=topic=2679. msg31155#msg31155 date=1255038422
Hi NewMe

Thank you for your reply. 

I hope you start to feel better soon, it sounds like you are having a tough time with the recovery hopefully your doctor can help.   
Can I ask you what else you had done with the bowleg correction? and how many weeks are you post op now?

Tan

Hi Tan,

I am now 3. 5 months post op.  Left leg improved significantly so that I can conduct normal activities.  Going downstairs is still a bit challenging and the knees still cannot bend fully as before the op.  I can deal with this as it as I expect it to improve over time.
The US Dr, on my post removal visit, declared with authority that it will be a few more months before the true impact of the Op can be assessed.  He thinks the knee popping has to do with the Op impacting the ligament and muscle groups, which is normal.

What Dr Veklich did with my op was to try to give my left leg a 2 mm height increase (in addition to correction) and rotate my right tibia a bit to correct pronation.  These were based on findings from the US Dr console and the full length x-ray I took in US.  I wish I said nothing about these to Dr Veklich and just did the normal op.  The result might have been better.  Dr Veklich is very good at what he does due to extensive hands on experience and did wonders to a local orphan girl with severe deformity to give her a life (I saw local paper headline of the before and after photos while in Kiev).  On the flip side, there is no modern computer generated images for you to view and chose the outcomes, no full length x-rays (only cut-site x-ray done during op).  He thinks the best correction is when the knees are touching while your feet are slightly apart (vs together).  This may be good for people with symmetrically developed calf muscles and lower legs.  However for me, the correction result is a less than optimal, in my opinion.  I am now a bit knock-kneed, not just looks, but when I walk, my knees knock into each other unless I purposely walk with my feet more apart.  So if you chose to have this done, do a lot of study to determine aesthetically & functionally the optimal outcome you desire & voice it instead of totally leaving it up to the Dr. 
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Tan
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« Reply #17 on: January 02, 2010, 11:34:28 PM »

Hi NewMe

If your sill popping into this site i'd love to hear how you are getting on?

Tan
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NewMe
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« Reply #18 on: March 10, 2010, 06:13:28 AM »

Hi Tan,

Just popped back in to check things out.
I am now 8.5 month post op. Most of the discomfort with my ligament behind knee is sporadic & mild although still not completed gone. The snapping/popping sound in right knee is still there when I bend my legs in certain way. It feels as though the top of the Tibia and the bottom of the Femur are touching as they are not perfectly fitted under the knee cap.  When I try to bend all the way with my knees, I can tell they still do not have the full strength or elasticity. I can carry out all my normal daily activities though (Walking, mild exercise, dancing...).

And yes, my knees still do knock into each other when walking as the result of a slight over correction in my opinion.

Aesthetically, my legs are better looking than before even with the over correction. Functionally, they are not as good as before as I did not have any of the issues I mentioned above. One house move put my left knee into bad shape for over a month...

Bottom line, the jury is still out there on if this was a smart decision on my part to have the op.
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« Reply #19 on: March 10, 2010, 09:21:07 AM »

Let's hope that you feel fully recovered soon!
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