Question: I’m only 36 and I’ve struggled with knee pain for years due to sports. I’ve had numerous surgeries, but had TKR 4 months ago. I still have swelling and stiffness, but more importantly, I’m still having pain. Sometimes it’s so bad I’m in tears, and I have a pretty high tolerance for pain. My doctor says my X-ray is fine, and because I SHOULDN’T be having this amount of pain at this point, he doesn’t know what else to do for me, as in he just gave up or doesn’t believe me because of where I SHOULD be. Is it possible that maybe my knee is rejecting the hardware, or what could be wrong? Would an MRI do any good? I didn’t go through all of this pain from TKR just to be in the same pain, or more, than what I had prior to the surgery!
Dr. Foreman: The materials in a knee replacement are relatively inert and the chance of your body having a reaction to them is infinitesimally small. An MRI would show absolutely nothing as the metal from the knee replacement would distort the pictures. Pain following a knee replacement can come from infection, failure of the components to bond to the bone, stiffness of the knee, instability of the knee, and/or leg weakness. I might suggest a second opinion from a doctor experienced in knee surgery to see if a second set of eyes might uncover some solution.
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