Did you recently have knee surgery or damage? When we talk about your recovery, one of the critical things is assessing loss of knee rom (range of motion). It is a fact that damage to your knee extension range of action might be one of the leading factors that impact the development of osteoarthritis (after you undergo ACL reformation). Hence, this article will highlight various methods of evaluating and treating loss of knee motion. It will help you improve your movements and diminish long-term complications.
What affects knee ROM?
Full knee range of motion is imperative for ideal functioning. Even if you have a minute loss of motion, it can lead to restricted movement and painful conditions. While if your condition is severe, it can lead to significant damage and disability. Hence, it would help if you had symmetrical knee ROM and strength for proper functioning.
However, a loss of motion may cause problems in the lower extremity, intense pain, and loss of strength.
The reasons include:
- Severe knee injury
- Loose body in knee joint
- Improper rehab after surgery
- Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) restructuring
- Lower extremity ruptures
- Osteoarthritis or chondrosis
- Dislocated bucket-handle semilunar cartilage tears
- Mucoidal deterioration of the ACL
- Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL) injuries
- MCL Sprain
How to Evaluate Knee Range of Motion?
Did you know that numerous ways help treat the disabled ROM of your knee? However, the proper assessment of your kneecap motion is essential. Also, some grade of hyperextension is normal. According to doctors, if you are a male, you may usually experience 5 degrees, while a female may experience 6 degrees of hyperextension. Hence, it is not beneficial to re-establish motion to a random zero degrees.
One of the critical factors that help assess loss of knee movement range is to examine a non-working knee. You cannot ignore this as you need to establish a reference point for what is regarded as “normal” in every patient.
- The foremost check is to grip the first toe with a single hand to move the foot off the table.
- You may need to use a cloth roll of varying heights for this purpose.
- Then you need to properly examine the knee to ensure that it is fully hyperextended.
What is Knee Hyperextension?
Hyperextension of the knee happens when your leg straightens unduly at the knee joint, placing excessive strain on the knee structure and backside of the knee joint.
Other facets of evaluation that can be performed when facing knee movement range include patellar flexibility, tibiofemoral arthrokinematics, and soft tissue limitations.
Patellar flexibility is particularly imperative after your ACL has been reconstructed using a patellar muscle autograft. Hence, any limitation can have an evident association with the limited knee extension.
So, these evaluations will help direct our manual therapy approach to re-establish standard arthrokinematics and the ROM of the knee.
How to Treat Loss of Knee ROM?
There are many ways to enhance knee joint extension motion. However, if you are stressed with this motion, self-stretching, low load long duration, and range of motion devices can be a great help. Hence, permitting moderate, regular, and progressive load on the knee is usually more acceptable for you, specifically those uncomfortable or protected in their motions. But, again, manual therapies are an ideal way for excellent outcomes.
What are the recommended Self-Stretches?
The self-stretches recommended by doctors include:
There are two simple stretches. The basic one demands you to apply a stretch into extension by forcing their distal thigh.
Towel Knee Stretch
The second is a bit more advanced and requires you to push down on the distal thigh while you use a towel across your foot to pull in and at the same time stretch the hamstrings.
Low Weight Long Period Stretching
If you face a challenging knee flexion, the following precaution is low weight long period stretching. Many pieces of research support the fact that low-weight long period stretching is very effective in improving knee motions.
Doctors recommend that you should perform low-weight long period stretching in the supine posture instead of the prone knee position. Indeed, it is more comfortable and helpful. To do this, you need to position a towel roll or similar thing under your heel to enable a full extension of your knee.
The objective of this workout is to be gentle and maintain the stretch for a few minutes. Ideally, you should use six to twelve pounds and hold the posture for at least ten minutes. So, the less the weight, the better the outcome.
Always remember to apply moist heat to the knee while doing the exercise for more effective results.
Which Devices Are Used to Improve Knee ROM?
If you are struggling with the scope of motion of your knee and not moving your knee enough, you may use some renewal devices. Have you tried dynamic immobilizing? It is known that a majority of the people would somewhat regular and embrace a continued stretch rather than apply support for a dynamic stretch.
Expert recommended restoration devices include knee support usually manufactured by Joint Active System (JAS) and End Range of Motion Improvement (ERMI).
What are the benefits of the Devices?
If you have these devices, you can easily perform your bearable stretch from the comfort of your home. Regular movements all over the day are pretty helpful.
Ideally, the conditions to use these devices are when you fear that you will self-limit yourself and avoid motion. So, it would help if you tried to take support from these devices as early as possible.
So, these are just a few approaches to evaluate and treat this Loss of ROM. You should know that it is vital to restore your knee movement fully. Hence, you should adequately assess early signs of Loss of ROM and try to treat it timely.
Visit Premier Pain Centre
In these challenging times, you may visit Premier Pain Centre to consult the best pain specialists to provide you with the proper guidance on treating this condition. Our qualified experts and advanced methods will indeed offer you peace of mind.