How Does Arthrofibrosis Affect Knee Replacement Surgery?


Quick Answer

Arthrofibrosis can occur in people who undergo knee replacement surgery due to the buildup of scar tissue in the knee. This can affect the range of motion in the knee joint and may even cause permanent incapability to bend and straighten the knee, says Healthline.

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Full Answer

Arthrofibrosis is more likely the longer surgery lasts and the longer the knee is immobile, according to Healthline. For this reason, it is necessary to keep the knee moving during recovery and the doctor or physical therapist may recommend exercises to prevent this condition. Although the condition is extremely rare, people who undergo knee replacement surgery should be aware of the symptoms of arthrofibrosis. Walking with a bent knee can be a sign that the condition is developing. Also, pain should lessen as the recovery continues, so a sudden increase in pain should lead to a doctor's visit. Other symptoms include weakness in the quad muscles, swelling of the knee, and hotness around the knee.

Once the condition is diagnosed, there are a few treatment options available, as reported by Healthline. One treatment option is manipulation, in which the doctor tries to loosen the scar tissue in the knee. In more severe cases, the doctor may turn to arthroscopic surgery or a more invasive open surgery to remove the scar tissue.

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