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Calf pain after arthroscopic knee surgery

(109 discussions)

I just had arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn miniscus and I am having more pain in the calf of my leg then in the knee. The calf is very tight and painful. I had a Doppler venus test to make sure there was no blood clots. There aren’t any. The Dr. says it is how I am walking that is causing the pain. He said to walk heel to toe and use warm wet compresses. Is there anything else I should be doing. I am going back to the Dr. on Thursday (1 week after surgery) I don’t know if he will recommend physical therapy. I need relief from this calf pain. Any ideas.ThanksEllen

109 comments

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    9 10

    I had meniscus repair surgery and a micro fracture done on my left knee about 4 weeks ago. Before that I had also had a Synvisc injection. I started getting the calf pain after the Synvisc injection. Immediately after the surgery and whilst I was on anti inflams the calf abated. It is now back and if I stop taking anti inflammatories, it just increases. I have had a Doppler for blood clots that was negative but showed low blood flow. Are these calf pains going to stop and if so how long will it take ?

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      9 10

      Hey guys
      Before 1 year ago I was so orthoscopy surgery but still to now too much pain my doctor put injections in my knee but after 1month of injection no stop pain I m too much worred I can I do

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        9 10

        I had meniscus surgery and the surgeon repaired the cartilage at the front of my knee at the end of March. I too have had such pain after surgery in my calf. My daughter is a massage therapist and started working on my calf to try and help the pain. She used a “facia blaster”. She heated my calf up first and then worked on the pain with her facia blaster. It worked! I have had her do it a couple of times when the pain returns. Hope this helps.

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          9 10

          Did that work? I had knee surgery one week ago and I’m having severe calf pain. Dvt negative also..

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    9 10

    I have had very painful calf since knee surgery on Oct. 12th. Like others it feels like a permanent ‘post charley horse’ pain. Nothing helps – cold, heat, drugs, massage. My surgeon says fluid probably drained into the calf during surgery -just need to wait it out. How long will this last?

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      9 10

      I heard the same. It’s now Nov. Surgery in Feb. Calf with tighten up and ankle bending inward. It was a “ simple meniscus repair” the non bloody kind. I’m riding a cart at Walmart now. 10 minute surgery $20,000.00 total with MRI. It’s double x two the pain and overall feeling bad! Knee swells above cap. Sent me to PT. Gave me a list of exercises $900.00 2 visits. I’m tired.

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      9 10

      Did your calf pain ever go away? I had meniscus surgery 1week ago and now have major calf tightening and calf muscles feels soft chokehold my other legs calf muscle. Went for dvt scan and it was negative.

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    9 10

    I had arthroscopic knee surgery April 13th, 2012. About 3 days after surgery I started feeling extreme pain in my calf. I went to the ER yesterday Apri 19, 2012 and had a ultra sound done to find blood clots and nothing was found. The Doctor said I had Superficial Thrombophlebitis. I still have extreme pain in my calf when I go stand up and been using hot wash cloth in microwave to heat it up for about 40 second and lay it on my calf but it seems it’s a temporary relief for just about 30 minutes. Can anyone help with information that could help take the pain away. Thank you, JPA

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    9 10

    I’m having terrible calf pain after my knee surgery sometimes just laying down hurts also.

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    9 10

    i had arthroscopic knee surgery for a torn medial meniscus 10 days ago. I also had a baker’s cyst and apparently it ruptured before I had the surgery and the synovial fluid drained into my calf causing my calf and ankle to swell up. I did have an ultrasound to verify I had not developed dvt. the calf pain has caused my pt to not go according to schedule. when I ride the bike, even though my knee is okay; once I get off, the calf tightens up. I wore compression stockings for 5 days and the calf swelling is reduced, but the calf still tightens up. has anyone else had a baker’s cyst rupture about the same time they had arthroscopic surgery and if so, how long did the calf pain last?

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      9 10

      I had Baker’s cyst in both knees, at different times. One took 2-3 months before it went away, the other was over 6 months. Not a happy camper.

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      9 10

      I had a ruptured bakers cyst which caused my knee and entire leg to swell so bad I couldn’t walk. Went to orthopedics he drained then injected cortisone into leg. A week later it swelled so bad again went back had MRI to determine it was torn meniscus. Had knee drained 5 times before they talked bout surgery. Would have opted for injections series of 6 but they were 750 a pop couldn’t afford that ortho doc said surgery is best option and I will feel like a million bucks afterward. All started in march with swelling and had surgery may 22 2019. Leg was extremely swollen day of surgery refused to drain and promised it would go away and I would be back to my normal self in a week. Bullshit! Here we are a month later and 4 visits to ER after surgery because of pain so severe and had 104 temp and I’m still in exculpating pain. This morning my leg is severely swollen can’t bend knee and barely weight bear on it. Now my back is killing me doc refuses pain mess because he says knee looks fine no infection but I’m worse off now than before the surgery. Seriously beating myself up for going this route

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    9 10

    It is Sept 5 today. I had surgery for a torn meniscus and torn cartilage on July 6 of this year. I had a long talk with my Physical Therapist after surgery, about 2.5 weeks after. I too am having calf pain and my doppler was negative. The physical therapist explained to me that when the surgeon led me to believe all would be well a few days after surgery, he left out the fact that that is only true if you have acess to a whole team of physical therapists 24/7, who are doing, exercises, weights, whirlpool, inon therapy and ice. This is what they do you see, with professional football players. And, bear in mind, this is college level. I am a 55 year old woman in relatively strong shape, although I am about 50 pounds overweight, I am strong, ride a bike and lift weights anyway. So when I started experiencing this pain afterward, and was debilitated for a day or so, I got pretty upset with my surgeon. I wrote a letter to my provider and told it like it was, not appreciating being mis-lead about my recovery period. I am a nurse, with many years of ortho experience so this really pissed me off. I iced the area, took anti-inflammatories, and rested my calf for a day, gently, slowly walking, relaxing my leg. I also used strong support hose, and when the pain was really bad, wrapped my calf in an ACE for a day. It helped a bit. It will take months to really recover so share this with your hubby. Be patient.

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    9 10

    THe day after surgery severe calf pain have not be able to sleep at night went to follow up to remove stiches and they sent for droppler and it was negative here we are 11 days and still have calf pain what shalll I do

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    9 10

    Hi there, I had arthroscopic knee surgery on the 24th (few days ago). I have terrible calf pain and I was sent today for the doppler test for blood clots which turned out negative. I don’t understand how it could be from walking, because my pain started the next day after surgery. My doctor said it could be a strain. Any ideas what can be happening??

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    9 10

    These posts are now so old, I wonder if anyone of you still has calf pain or how long it too to heal?My medal meniscus repair was one week ago, calf pain started 2 days ago. Going to try the heel to toe walking, as I am sure I am not walking right.Can anyone let me know how they are doing now?

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      9 10

      Im am a four days post op and my calf started a couple of days ago. I started stretching it out and applying heat and ice seems to be relieving. Follow-up on the 10th I also am taking muscle relaxers twice daily. Hope this info helps

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    9 10

    I had knee surgery about a week ago. The day after surgery my calf started hurting and it hurt worse than my knee. They thought I had a blood clot and sent me for a doppler, which it turned out not to be a blood clot. It was the way I was walking. I was walking kind of on my tip toes and not putting the heel of my foot down. Once I started making myself walk heel to toe the calf pain went away.

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    9 10

    I had knee surgery about a week ago. My calf started hurting me and hurt worse than my knee. I figured out I was walking on the front part of my foot and not putting my heel down (kind of on my tip toes) Once I quit doing that the calf pain went away. I keep telling myself: Walk heel to toe, heel to toe. It really will help and quickly too. They thought I was having a blood clot and even sent me for a doppler because of the calf pain. But it turned out just to be the way I was walking

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    9 10

    7 weeks after arthroscopic surgery….off and on severe calf pain…like everyone else describes…any hope out there???

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    9 10

    I’m post-op 10 days and having terrible calf pain after a menescous repair. I’ve read the posts but don’t know how to get the answers, please help.

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    9 10

    I have been having some fairly severe pain in a lower center part of my calf about a week ago. Its been 3 weeks post op from my ACL reconstruction. I originally thought that I had pulled a muscle or strained a tendon. I notice that the pain is most severe after periods of rest where my leg is elevated (like when I wake in the morning)From the posts it sounds as if some of the problems people are experiencing are similar. I will repost if I find anything new from my doctor.

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      9 10

      Bro I’m scared because I’m 23 days post op and and my calf and my shin hurts so bad.. id love to talk to you call me tomorrow plz I also have fluid above my knee big time, I’m just scared
      3182099098

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    9 10

    I didn’t think this was a common problem but apparently it is… I had surgery 12 days ago and the follow-up doctor’s appointment 4 days ago. The doctor said to take it slowly then go from there.My first “unassisted” walk (no cane, no crutches) was 2 days ago, the pain in my calf came yesterday. It felt like a permanent charlie horse. Does anyone have any suggestions or exercises?

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      9 10

      re: the calf painI went to my first physical therapy yesterday and mentioned this to the therapist. She said that since my knee was probably bent for a long time and full weight was not on my injured leg, now my calf muscle is waking up and feeling it. She also mentioned that massage will help it; if I want to exercise and walk, let pain be my guide. After exercising, ice it as needed. Good luck to your knee and calf!

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        9 10

        I am still on crutches a month after surgery and cannot barely weight bear. My knee is bent because of all the draining I had done for 2 months prior to and they never told me the right way to elevate it. So now it’s stuck in a bent position and the pain is so intense and now my knee and calf make this click clacking noise and it’s so painful like it’s locking up on me it literally stops me dead in my tracks. How long and what u do to straighten and bend ur knee? Physical therapy isn’t working

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    9 10

    Had knee arthroscopic surgery on Apr09/’09. Have severe calf and below the knee pain and cramps since then; it is rock hard and is taking Motrin for the inflammation. But it seems as the effects of Motrin wears off the the hardness and the cramps come back. I am also taking Vicodin alternately for the pain.My doctor too said everything would be fine and dandy after the surgery, and here I am groaning and limping and can’t even put my foot down. I go back for post-op this Apr17/’09. Don’t what will be next.

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    9 10

    My husband just had knee surgery and he to is having terrible pain in his calf and they are swollen and now black and blue. Sometimes when he gets up to walk he gets cramps in the calf or charlie horses. He also was tested for blood clots but found none. His knee feels pretty good but he isn’t walking well because of the calf. Dr. won’t give any explaination either. It sure seems to me if you do a lot of these types of surgeries you would have someone else with these symptons and be able to tell a person what to do. Any other suggestions?

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    9 10

    So glad to have found this board. I had surgery on Wed (today is Friday) and my calf is so painful. Doesn’t hurt when I sit, only when I stand or walk. Dr. made it sound like I’d be running a marathon in a few days after surgery (as he explained it to my husband, so my hubby thinks I’m milking it)Going to show him your posts. This is no fun.Donna

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    9 10

    I had arthroscopic surgery on 7/2 and I developed severe calf pain 3 days later. My knee feels great but my calf hurts extremely bad, it feels like a permanent charlie-horse. I massage it 1-2 times a day, but it is very painful. No one has tested me for blood clots yet, so I am a bit worried and might push for it to rule it out. Anymore suggestions on dealing with this problem or has anyone else gotten better from this?

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      9 10

      Are the answers to any of these folks questions posted somewhere for all to view? I am having the same difficulty with charlie horse pain in calf and now both calves. Just saw my surgeon post op for cartilage removal. He is having me go to phys. therapy to help w/ walking. Also checking for blood clots. What is the main concensus for this type of thing. Can it be overstretching, walking wrong, smoking? Any ideas?

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        9 10

        How long did it last?

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    9 10

    Just wondering, since all of these posts are fairly old now,..does anyone have any relief yet? I am only 4 days post-op, but very concerned with the severe calf pain. My knee feels great,..the calf is just as everyone else has described it.

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    9 10

    Hi…After posting just over an hour ago, I did some more rearch. Google “Compartnment Syndrome” and see if it descibe your symtoms regarding calf pain. It discribed mine to a “T” However, it said the vast majority of sufferers are males. But there is a small percentage of females who get it. The doctor to see if you think you have this is a neurologist. I plan on making an appointment with one tomorow. I’d like to print out some info, but my friend who’s an RN said generally that doctors hate it when patients come in with stuff printed off the internet. Oh well, patients need to be savvy comsumers of their health care, and need to be assertive and hopefully the drs. will see it as a team approach. I may or may not have this, but it sure seems to explain the way my calfs are causng excruciating pain. Is there anyone out there who has seen a neurologist for calf pain? I’d like to hear how they made out. Anyways, some food for thought.

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    9 10

    I had terrible calf pain before my arthroscopy today for torn meniscus. I can’t even stand in line at the grocery or post office. I always have to “have a sit” whenever possible.” Ultrsounds on my legs came back negative for blood clot. When I woke up after the surgery, my calf on the same leg hurt so bad!! They gave me morphine, but it didn’t help. I had minimal pain from the scope. Even 3 Percocet didn’t relive the pain. I’m wondering if my knees have been so inflammed for over 10 years by severe osteoarthris, that the inflammation is spreading down to my calfs. It’s almost to the point of disabling. I fear I will be on crutches all the time if this keeps up. No doctor can give me a good explanation. I’m desperate and tired. Anybody have any ideas?

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    9 10

    surgery 5/19. having really bad charley-horse like cramps in my calf. glad to read that all of you guys had it too. does it get any better?thanks

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    9 10

    I am 5 months post – op miniscus repair, have been through 2 rounds of PT, and now have so much pain in my calf I can hardly walk, it is hard but not red.

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    9 10

    This is 5 months after my surgery and I still have the calf pain. Not when I am off of it. When I first stand up, I have such calf pain I can’t stand on it for the first 30 seconds or so. I can walk ok for periods of time but can’t stand for any period of time.

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    9 10

    Oh my goodness! I am so thrilled that I am not the only one! I am 9 days post microfracture surgery, and my calf hurts far more than anything else. I was getting worried as noone has done any tests for blood clots. On Day 3 after surgery, my PT said it was likely caused from the way I was walking. I saw my surgeon today and he said it can be from laying with the calf pressed into a pillow for lengthy periods (causing swelling that is dripping down from the knee to pool in the calf muscle). He recommended laying on my side and shifting positions more frequently when sitting/sleeping. It hasn’t helped. But I thought it might be worth mentioning.

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    9 10

    i have the same thing 2 1/2 wks post ACL allograft reconstuction. all studies for dvts are normal (3 ultrasounds…and were good studies) surgery sites look good. calf hurts : worst overnight! unrelated to weightbearing. what happended with your problem? thanks..gh

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    9 10

    My calf pain started a few weeks before my arthroscopic knee surgery and the doctor then said it was beccause of how I was walking (favoring my painful swollen knee).Now, almost two weeks after surgery, both the knee and calf continue to feel the same. I’m hoping that PT will help. I start it this week.

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      9 10

      Same with me… I was having calf pain prior to lateral meniscus surgery done on 10/4… started on blood thinners As precautionary method due to previous DVT with hysterectomy… started feeling calf pain yesterday, 10/10, again. Hmmm wondering if it is a gait issue but you never know. Post op not until 10/16 with MD but glad to see I’m not alone.

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    9 10

    I thought I was going nuts, but have the same problem. My knee doesn’t feel bad at all, but the pain in my calf – only when I walk – is horrible. It’s fine when resting. The PT I saw said it likely isn’t a blood clot (by my symptoms). I am doing the heal/toe walk. Any help?

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    9 10

    I had my surgery of menascus tear done on 26 dec .
    Aftr surgery I started wth calf pain. Now 2 mnths completed still my calf pain is thr. I took several medicines on it. No use at all.
    Now aftr 45 dayd I started walking. It was better for 10 days . But now again psin started in my knee. Is it due to excess walk. Wil I face any problem or has my condition worsen up.
    Plz reply

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    9 10

    I am reassured after reading these comments. Glad to know I’m not the only one! I had a knee arthroscopy 2 weeks ago. Calf pain started 4 days after the operation. Just as people here have said, the calf is painful but the knee seems ok. I’m going to try ice on it for a few hours. I’ll let you know the outcome. We ‘painful calfers’ are all in it together, boys and girls!

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    9 10

    I had arthroscopic knee surgery over 5 months ago. Shortly after the surgery for the following couple of weeks, my main source of pain was in my thigh muscles. Felt like they could cramp up any given second. but eventually it went away. Terrible calf pain now with occasional spasms. Like the worst charlie horse pain I’ve ever known. Sitting is fine, but standing for any length of time is a killer. Also have trouble getting up from sitting to standing. along with those first few steps. Nothing helps – anti-inflamatories, muscle relaxers, ice, heat… I’m hoping this too will go away on it’s own since this pain is way worse than any pain I had before my surgery.

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    9 10

    So glad I found this and i’m not the only one. Had anthroscopy to remove piece of torn meniscus and as soon as I tried walking had severe pain in my calf, after 8 days still severe pain, calf feels tight and have bruising on calf and foot. Was sent for a scan to rule out a blood clot and was told I had severe internal bruising on my calf but no blood clot thankfully. Painkillers do not work and only respite I get from the pain is rest.

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      9 10

      Hi. Have your calf pain recovered?

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    9 10

    I had my outside miniscus removed from my right knee, because it was so extremely damaged, Dr. Said my running and walking hobbies are over, since I am bone on bone on the right side. I was walking the next day after surgery and within the first three weeks I was improving constantly. Around the 6 week post op, I started getting severe cramps in the top of my calf just below the knee. It often gave shooting pain down the calf into my foot. It is so painful I often can not sleep. I am religious about doing all the physical therapy exercises and stretches, but I can’t get it to relax. I am in my 8th week post op now, and I still am in pain. It especially hurts when I first stand up, or often when I’m driving and my leg is in the same position where I can’t stretch it. I sure hope this subsides soon. I read to keep extremely hydrated, so I started drinking a lot more water. I will let you know how it goes.

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      9 10

      I am having the issues, 2 months out. Did you ever get an answer from your dr? I may have gel shots in my knee to help the bone in bone. My calf keeps me up at night.

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    9 10

    I had arthroscopic knee surgery. It is now ten weeks and I have calf pain, spasm in my shin and I still can’t bear weight. PT seems to make it worse. I had an ultrasound on my leg and even a chest CT to rule out blood clots. It is difficult for me because I was walking 3-4 miles a day before the surgery.
    I was hoping the surgery would take care if my episodes of knee pain due to my torn meniscus.
    I have a heart condition and I need to get aerobic exercise. My pain is worse than before and I’m sorry I ever had this surgery. My surgeon does not respond to my phone calls, so I am seeing another surgeon. I still have quite a bit of swelling. I’ve been to the ER and my primary care physician and both of them state that my knee looks fine. No improvement in ten weeks is discouraging.

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    9 10

    July 2017 and I’ll keep this thread running! You’ll be able to walk out of surgery, they said. Pfft! Just over 2 weeks post op and I’ve been experiencing this calf pain too for a few days now. Ever since I tried walking without crutches and tried bearing a bit of weight. I had my first checkup yesterday but I felt like it was really a take my bandaid off and go. No check up on how I’m going with walking etc. I really feel like I’ve just had this surgery and then been left in the dark. Probably going to go to my GP for a checkup instead. I’m also having a lot of trouble trying to do this bed exercises. My knee is still really limited to how far it can bend and straighten. My first surgery and the aftermath is just a real nuisance! I feel so useless.

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      9 10

      I feel ya. I had torn meniscus surgery may 22 2019 on lateral and the outside and also severe arthritis in my knee. I broke it back in he 80’s and have had problems with knee locking up on me and pain. I’m in construction and do a lot of physical work which doesn’t help. My knee sttarted to swell so bad back in march and went and had it drained. A week later went back to have drained again and was sent for ultrasound to discover a ruptured bakers cyst. Had cortisone shot and had drained a few more times then was sent for MRI to discover the 2 meniscus tears. Scheduled surgery may 22 2019 it was severely swollen the day of and he said I would be walking within days. Here we are a month later and cannot bend my knee still on crutches and the more I weight bear the more it swells. The pain is so intense and my knee and calf continue to experience jolting intense click clacking like it’s locking up. It’s still swollen and went for post op appr to remove stitches and he evoked me telling me my knee should be straight and I should be walking without crutches. I have been to ER 4 times as it literally feels broken ( I have had numerous broken bones over the years just recently last June broke 4 ribs on a roof) so I know what broken bones feel like. He also told he I have a knee of a 70 yr old because of years of strenuous work I do yet I’m only 47. Started physical therapy 3 weeks ago and I can barely do it because the pain is so severe. Asshole doctor refuses to give me any more pain mess as my knee looks fine he says. I push myself but the pain is worse than before surgery. I feel helpless and misled by my surgeon. I cry all the time and. I have pushed myself to try and walk without crutches for me to lose balance and fall. I need answers and relief. This is a nightmare. So regretting having this done. $25000 surgery and and I feel like a guinea pig because I’m in worse shape than ever now and severe pain. Any idea on how long the pain will last?

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    9 10

    I have horrible calf pain when walking. I’m 2 days post surgery where they removed a piece of my meniscus due to a tear. I’m walking but on my tip toe of the injured leg. The post I read about not being on your leg prior to the surgery made since b/c I haven’t put weight on my leg in about 3 weeks prior to surgery and I’m walking with a limp not really putting weight on my leg. I will try the heel to toe method. So glad I’m not the only one having this affect after surgery.

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    9 10

    Same with the Charlie horse like calf pain. More of nuisance than anything. Painful when I walk around but dr. Office said it’s likely due to the way I have been walking. 6 days post meniscus surgery. Knee is doing great though. Lol!!

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    9 10

    10 days post-op for torn meniscus removal and grade4 chondroplasty. My calf pain set in 2 days after surgery. Doppler negative for blood clot.. but pain is pretty intense. Feels like a Charlie horse constantly coming on. You would think these Drs and therapists would address this… the calf pain has been just as hard to deal with as the knee itself!!!

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    9 10

    I am three weeks post lateral meniscus and anthroscopic for arthritis to help with cartilidge damage. (Sorry if I’m not spelling medical terms correctly). Out of nowhere come the worst calf pain, Charlie horse x 5. My calf is so tight it feels like it will burst at any given moment. In the morning when I get up, gasping pain directly under the calf muscle. This is not acceptable, why are so many of us suffering from this terrible pulling, tearing pain. My knee is still a bit sore but not bad, it’s that damn calf that has slowed my walk down to a crawling pace. I called the doc and they have scheduled a post op MRI for tomorrow. I hate hearing that this seems to be an ongoing problem for many. I intend to tell my doctor about all these post and ask why the possibility of this happening was never mentioned. Oh, I also had major ankle swelling immediately after my injury, just curious as to how many of you had the big cankle-ankle before surgery. I hope we all have a full recovery in our futures. p.s. I’m 52 years old and I felt like I was 40 until all this happened, I’m also curious how old the rest of you are and if this has any bearing on the calf pain. Thanks for reading. Feel better soon.

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    9 10

    So I’ve read 38 post about this problem that my 84yr old mother is experiencing for the past 3 wks following a arthroscopic surgery for torn meniscus. She is literally in tears and is now on Percocet and Valium. Is there no treatment or name for thiis condition???? PLEASE HELP!!

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    9 10

    24 sept 2017..got knee replacement on 18th.yesterday was my second day of walking with a walker..total maybe 100 steps during day.today..agony.. It started in the nook at back of my knee..then the ankle area..and now the calf.painkiller seems no help..horrible.. I am very careful to walk heel to toe..but this is lousy! I also can’t find an appropriate position for not sleepg only on my back..also fearful of knee position
    I am soo glad I am not alone..will keep this thread going..good luck everyone

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    9 10

    Arthroscopic knee surgery for loose bodies in my knee on Sept 19th. Have had horrible swollen, tight, tender, painful calf ever since I started putting weight on it the day after surgery. I was checked for blood clots, and none were found. I’ve taken a few different pain meds. They don’t help. I feel like if I didn’t have this severe calf pain I would be walking almost normal.

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    9 10

    Had my right meniscus tear cut away on sept 24 and toddy 3 weeks later still having lots of swelling and what I would call tooth ache in the knee, calf muscle pain a week ago but so far it been good, I’ve read that you can get nerve damage from this operation when they go in through the knees and from all the comments I’m wondering if this is what we are all experiencing.
    Still get extreme pain if I trust the knee by mistake and for me my right knee is still clicking/catching when bending, I have asked the surgery regarding this and told it’s normal but I recon I have a small tear again in the cartilidge.
    Realy wish I knew of the recovery time from knee surgery as I could of made a better choice in deciding what to do. Due to go back to work tomorrow on light duties as a field engineer and due to loss of sick pay but I recon I’m heading for more issue in doing so.
    Glad to see and read comments like above as other people can read and see meniscus repair does have recovery problems

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    9 10

    I had ACL surgery on my left knee on the 17th of October and starting 2 days after surgery when I could feel my leg again I started having severe calf pain. I am 9 days out of surgery my knee pain is almost non-existent but the calf pain gets horrible, I know if seen people say it’s from how your walking but I’ve yet to take a step with anything but crutches, my foot hasn’t touched the ground. When I had my post op the doc said it was normal but how can such pain in my calf be normal after knee surgery and how long does this last. I can’t even crutch myself the the bathroom without it hurting like crazy after. Hopefully someone finds out some good news my pain pills are running low.

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      9 10

      Jason, my husband is in the same boat right now. Please tell me you have found relief!!

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    9 10

    I had my scope on October 11th, I noticed a small
    Indent in my shin. As time went on my calf became very sore. I think it was from over tightening
    A clamp or something during surgery. I’m now getting a rectangle bruise on my calf.

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    9 10

    Same scenario here as everyone else. Calf pain started on third day after surgery. A small blood clot was found in my lower leg so now I am on eliquis. However still have the calf pain. I am going to do the heel to tie walking to see if this helps. This sucks! If anybody gets better on this posting board please post! And I thought my problems would be over after surgery!!!!!!!!

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      9 10

      Someone on here found information on Compartment Syndrome and Arthroscopic Surgery. Read all you can and see if it applies to you. Hope this helps!

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    9 10

    Had surgery 3 weeks ago…fierce pain in calf with bruising to foot… Also fluid buildup behind the knee causing horrible pain when walking…anyone else having that?l

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      9 10

      Yes I have the same did u get any answers from yr dr

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      9 10

      I had. Surgery to repair a meniscus torn in 2 places on 1.30.18. Once off the vicodin after 2 days, I am woken up with calf pain but on both legs. On the non.surgical side, my sciatic nerve seems to be inflamed and I have hip pain as well. I’ve been doing the one exercise the doctor gave for stretching the calf. Tylenol arthritis doesnt help. Ice does, temporarily. Calling the surgeon Tomorrow and if no relief, then the neurologist.

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      9 10

      Yes exactly what I’m going theough. I commented on another persons comment read my post if you can

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    9 10

    Had surgery on my left knee for torn meniscus 8 days ago. Whike I have some knee pain…my calf hurts horrifically! Sounds much like everyone else here! PT says try walking heel to toe, do far no relef. Worried about clots, which I will check out, but honestly more worried it wont go away based on these posts…not seeing anyone posting progress or relief……
    Praying for all !

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      9 10

      Heel toe worked for me amazing relief and quick result

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    9 10

    Eight days after meniscus arthroscopy. Suddenly my calf had the worst cramp of my life. I was literally screaming in pain. Far worse than a 7 mm kidney stone. Tried everything to try to make it stop. After about five minutes of screaming in agony, I tried putting my foot on the floor. It was agony getting it to the floor, pain got worse ans worse, but as soon as I put pressure on my foot, the pain stopped. I ate a banana to help prevent another cramp like this. If it happens again, I think Will just cut my leg off it cannot hurt more.

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    9 10

    Does anyone have a solution or answer to why this is happening?? I’m going through the same thing as everyone else and I can’t stand it!

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    9 10

    One week after arthroscopic surgery for a meniscus tear. Intense calf pain started a couple days after surgery and is excruciating. WORST PAIN OF MY LIFE. My surgeon disappeared after surgery, nobody could reach him, so I took matters into my own hands. Went to ER for ultrasound – no blood clot, also CT scan showed no infection in tissues. Went to Primary doctor who had no clue. Anywhere I went, I got the feeling that people thought I was just trying to get some pain medication, which was not at all true. I just wanted to know what was wrong. I had some Percocet from the surgeon but it only took the edge off, did not get rid of the pain. The pain was like you all have described – like the worst Charlie Horse, coupled with rubber bands tightly wound around my calf. Some pain in the upper leg too but the calf was the WORST. And nowhere can I find info on the internet, doctors don’t warn you about this before surgery, they act like 2 days after surgery and everything is fine. I finally saw my surgeon and he acted like he had never heard of this happening and suggested I find another surgeon to treat me (nice service right?). FINALLY last night I took a prescription muscle relaxant I happened to have (Tizanidine) plus 2 Percocet and 1 hour later I was in heaven!! No pain at all. The muscle relaxer makes you drowsy so this won’t work for people who have to go to work, but at least it helped me figure out what it was. I don’t know why the surgery caused this problem. For all of you thinking of trying this, please see a doctor. I think you are not supposed to take muscle relaxants at the same time as painkillers because it can slow your breathing (and probably cause death according to warning labels) so not recommending this, don’t take this as medical advice. Just saying what I did. Am doing this today too and it’s getting me through the day. If anyone found another solution, please post it. Or if anyone knows of a doctor who is familiar with this problem and will treat it, please post. This is not a long-term solution if the muscle spasms keep going on. I sure hope they are temporary. Would sure be nice if some DOCTORS would post here.

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    9 10

    Please anyone post if they have found relief! My hubby is a week away from meniscus tear arthroscopic surgery and the pain in his calf is unbearable. Knee feels great. The swelling is insane and he feels like his muscle is going to burst. The ortho surgeon said “hmmm this is unusal” … doesn’t really sound like it is unusual after reading all this. Elevation and heat is what they say but I don’t think that is working………anyone please give us a glimmer of hope :/

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    9 10

    I had arthroscopic surgery on my leftknee October 10 and was doing great until this past Friday when I drove to Orlando for Xmas. When I arrived in Orlando that is when pain started in my calf. So it has bee approximately 10 weeks. I tore my meniscus playing tennis. Said I had to have surgery as it was a bucket tear. The pain is really bad when I walk and now I am limping and I was doing great. Have two calls into my Dr. But it is a holiday weekend and have not heard back. Have not had that test either for Blood clots so I am a little worried. Has anyone been able to get rid of the pain and if so how
    And did they completely heal and go back to normal? Please reply!

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    9 10

    Had surgery 1week 1/2 ago pain in calf with bruising to my foot also fluid buildup behind the knee causing a lot of pain when walking….anyone else have this? How long does this last

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    9 10

    Hi,

    I had acl surgery a week ago and I am too having severe pain in calf. Due to my dad having history of blood clots they gave me an anticoagulant for 5 days. I’m still worried I could have a clot. I don’t have any other symptoms but can’t weightbear at times due to the calf pain

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    9 10

    We think we finally have an answer to the calf pain. The surgeon had no idea what was wrong because my husbands knee was healing fine from meniscus surgery. I finally took him to our family doctor who said it is called “Complex Regional Pain Syndrome” CRPS …. Don’t google it unless you want to see the worst case scenerio. The doctor said it can last up to 6 months. I can tell you from watching my husband suffer it gets better 🙂 We are 7 weeks away from surgery. The swelling has gone down but not completely. He is able to bear his own weight and even went golfing today. He is still in pain but nothing like it was. I hope this give you hope and a place to start with your doctors!

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    9 10

    Can someone say whether or not this pain went away. I began to take muscle relaxers (my idea) and it helped.. Just don’t want to be on that forever.

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    9 10

    Hi all, I’ll share my story hoping that it helps.
    Had surgery exactly a week ago, I broke my ACL, meniscus and cartilage. Everything was fine until 3 days after surgery.
    Big bruise started to came out at the back of my knee and my calf was crazy painful every time that I would stand up. Laying down and raised was totally fine, as soon as I was standing I was in so much pain!
    I got rid of it with a very strict routine. I was putting ICE as soon as I woke up, while I was applying ice I was doing ankle pumps to make the fluids moving. Than I was standing up still applying ice on my calf, and the pain was much much less. Once standing, I was walking slowly slowly making sure that I was walking heel to toe in order to pump the liquids around. After that I was laying down with my leg up.
    I was repeating this rigorously every 2 hours, and the pain went away in a couple of days! Ice, ice, ice!!!
    It will get better, just hang in there an make sure to listen to your doctor advices, mine has been amazing!
    Be strong! 💪🏻

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    9 10

    Had my surgery a couple of days ago. I started gettting really bad calf pain about a day &1/2 later. Have anyone gotten any relief. I know this thread is old, but is there any hope?

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    9 10

    60 yrs old, surgery 6days ago, cramping in calf. My solution: I wrapped the tensor that was on my knee around my calf and it felt much better, walked normally with full ankle movement, and best of all got on our spin bike, no tension, and first just went with semi circles yesterday not full rotation then hung leg and did small circles each direction and full ankle rotations still sitting on bike then today I was able with a deep breath and relaxation to do full circles no bike tension -20 each direction and then hung leg again. After I started to feel lots of little movements blood flow and heat in that calf. I removed the tensor, elevated gave the knee ice for 20 minutes elevation for an hour or so. I find I am going up stairs with more movement in the knee as I was kind of stuck in a cautious position causing the cramping of the calf. I am a fitness professional and learning from my own experience is helpful to my clients. It is very important to do stretches while lying down not standing calf stretches and not to do any strengthening (no bike tension)
    until the doctor says you are able. Remember to do everything from a point of relaxation and not think “no pain no gain”mentality. Relaxation is the new strength.

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    9 10

    Hey everyone I had surgery on my knee weeks ago and had the same issues posted. Really bad calf pain. So I waited til I went and saw the Doc and was told that this is a normal occurrence. I was told to continue to be active and move around stretching it out as much as possible. And it should go away. I did that for a few days in a row and the pain has gone down significantly. Hope this helps

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      9 10

      Man call me tomorrow 3182099098
      I just need to talk to someone Who’s been through this, it’s been 23 days of Hell on earth for me and it’s scary kinda, and mentally exhausting, and the pain will not stop:( I need your opinion on some things, thanks

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        9 10

        How is your knee doing? Any positive results?

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    9 10

    Great! At last, some good news. Advice which seems to have brought a good result. I shall definitely try the stretching as three days after my arthroscopy last week, I’ve been experiencing excruciating pain in my calf and thigh, despite my knee feeling so much better. Thanks Jerry for that last post.

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    9 10

    My husband had “clean up” knee surgery on march 15 to remove some loose pieces of cartilage. He has been absolutely miserable ever since. The so-called “expert” surgeon looked at him and said he was dumbfounded. Never seen this before. Really? An expert who has done thousands upon thousands of surgeries and you have never had a patient with this sever calf pain?? Not believable. The arrogant ___! just can’t stand to think he may have made a mistake, or neglected to inform us of this possibility. Anyway, I digress. His therapists have been great, although his sessions are nothing shy of barbaric torture. They have to “massage” the right calf muscle, they have tried cupping, acupuncture. You name it. He is getting no relief, only worse. He is not a complainer AT ALL. But he is miserable and really needs to get back to work. I am discouraged to know that some many folks have this happen, and yet there seems to be no answer or solution. It’s so frustrating that these ortho surgeons just say the surgery is so routine and you’ll be back to normal in no time. He would have been much better off just dealing with the catching in his knee. At least he could walk then. If anyone finds anything or any doctor that offers a real solution, please post! I will do the same. I am going to try to get muscle relaxers perscribed for him. That is encouraging that it has helped a few of you. Thank you all for posting, and I am sorry that so many are feeling this horrible me pain. 🙁

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    9 10

    Stretch stretch stretch as much as you possibly can. I went threw the arthoscopy thing and my physical therapist told me my calfs were really tight so he took me to the stairs and made me stretch them until I did not feel the burning pain. Do this day and night and you will see a difference.

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    9 10

    I had an arthroscopy for a lateral meniscus repair three weeks ago and am experiencing symptoms similar to those reported by previous commenters.

    Post-op, I had a lot of pain and discomfort at night and assumed this was a by-product of the repair, the incisions and general trauma resulting from the surgeon poking around inside my knee. The moderately intense aching in the back of the knee quickly became the dominant issue though, particularly at night. Others have described it as a charlie horse or muscle spasm and that was true for me as well. Flexing my foot back and forth calf was instinctive and seemed to help, but my knee was largely immobilized so it was difficult to get a deep stretch. The back of the knee and calf remained tender and sore and I continued to attribute it to trauma from the surgery and inflammation. The past two weeks I was expecting this discomfort to diminish but I’ve had some surprisingly painful periods, again particularly at night. I’ve been worrying that the meniscus repair had somehow failed or that I had reinjured my knee while moving around.

    It was only today, three weeks after surgery, that I started poking the muscles and joint in earnest and realized that the pain was from deep in the upper portion of my calf muscle where it seems to dive into the back of the knee, and not the joint itself. Stretching and massage make the calf more painful, but five to ten minutes after I stop the pain significantly reduces. I have another three weeks before I can bear any weight on the leg, but I plan to self-massage and stretch throughout the day in the hopes that this resolves itself. The laziest way I’ve found to do the massage is to cross my legs while sitting and use the kneecap on my good leg to press into the painful area of my bad leg.

    Thanks all for posting your experience here.

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    9 10

    I just had knee arthroscopy last Friday and have been having the worst calf pain. I’ve noticed my VMO is extremely weak and I’m flat footed. Therefore I’ve realized I’m over pronating when I walk and my knee isn’t tracking properly cause I have a weak quads and glutes. So now I make sure to have supportive tennis shoes on when walking, completing Isometric quad sets, and glute strengthening exercises. I’m also focusing on heal to toe when walking and not overpronating. It’s serisously helped with the pain behind the knee and calf. Hope this helps.

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    9 10

    I had surgery 2 years ago. I STILL have calf pain. I’ve been checked for blood clots, has physical therapy, and nothing. Every single day my calf hurts. My doctors can’t tell me why.

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    9 10

    I had surgery for two tears on my meniscus 10 days ago. One day after surgery my calf and back of the knee pain was excruciating. Pain meds did not work. After four days passed I went on line to see if there was anything that would help. I walked as much as I could every day but I was in constant pain. I read Paolo’s suggestions-walk heal to toe and ice every two hours. I almost gave up because the pain did not seem to go away.

    Today I my pain was down 80% and I was able to go on the Elliptical for 10 min. Stick to the routine ice and walk, hopefully it will work for you.

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    9 10

    Totally agree with last post… I had all symptoms as described above. Going through therapy. I started doing a stretch where u put a strap around the top of the foot of the affected leg and pull toes toward chest and keeping knee straight. I Love that stretch! After a few days of doing the various stretches… pain eventually went away!

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    9 10

    I am a physician who has recently had meniscal surgery. I have had knee surgery before no problems but this time it is like everyone describes with ex curating calf pain especially at night. With a swollen painful calf I had to ruled out DVT ( negative)
    But showed fluid collection into calf area
    Mri showed most likely a ruptured Bakers (popliteal cyst)
    So, I think this is what is happening to a lot of patients and is under reported. Fluid from your knee surgery distends and ruptures ( with bleeding) a mostly likely very small and pre existing cyst
    It is worse at night because walking during the day stretches the calf muscle, whereas at night it tightens and them even slight movements will cause pain

    My suggestions: elevate, ice, wear a Ted hose stocking, take nsaids, pain and sleeping pills at night and keep stretching out your calf.
    No easy fix here
    Hope this helps

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    9 10

    I had miniscus surgery over two years ago. STILL have terrible calf pain,gets worse with standing or being active. Hurts put my leg up in recliner. Nothing helps. Stretching, pain patches, pain cream, pills, heat, cold, magnesium, potassium. No blood clot. So over this pain. 61 and I like to be active. Get tired of being in pain . Any ideas ?

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    9 10

    This forum is old but I would appreciate anyones input on calf pain. I am 29 and had partial meniscectomy surgery almost 3 weeks ago. 5 days after surgery my left calf (inner part) has been extremely tight and painful. They checked for blood clots and it was negative. I only feel it when I am walking and during stretching (haven’t tried jogging/running). I see that a lot of people experience calf pain but I am wondering how long it took for your calf to feel normal (no pain at all). My knee feels pretty good but my calf is holding me back. I go to PT twice a week and do the exercises twice a day at home. The therapist believes I have “trigger points” and they need to be worked out so they can relax. I’ve been receiving calf therapy from PT (massage, heat, ice, stretching) for two weeks but they have not gotten any better. My surgeon acts like it is normal but never mentioned this prior to my surgery. Has anyone experienced the same issues? If so how long until it goes away? I am worried it could be nerve damage from the knee surgery. Thanks in advance for responding!

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    9 10

    Had meniscus surgery almost 6 weeks ago – everything was pretty good the first couple of weeks, then out of no where my leg and ankle blew up with swelling and calf pain. Went back to surgeon and showed him. Not in the least bit worried (nor really interested)
    I have been doing ice, stretches, riding a stationary bike, walking, elevating the leg, ibuprofen, using compression wraps…nothing is helping thus far. I have never had a bit of swelling in my life, anywhere and I am 57. This is beyond ridiculous.

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    9 10

    I found these posts searching for calf pain following knee surgery and from a quick scan it looks like the cause is a bit of a mystery but my sense of it is that it is fluid build up. After surgery I notices a squishy fluid sound in my knee when I bent it and could even feel the fluid squirting around in my knee and it was surprisingly loud, plus I felt there had to be air mixed in with that to make that kind of noise. My surgeon said, yeah that happens sometimes, it’s normal. Well about the time the noise ceased, a few days, the calf pain started, so I assume that this saline solution or whatever it is they inject to do the surgery, finds its way down, makes sense, and the fluid accumulation in the calf is causing the pain. A physician posted something about a cyst rupturing, but either way, it’s fluid build up. I assume over time this can be worked out/absorbed by the body. I wish there were some way they could go in and remove the fluid but guess that’s not possible. It seems that only stretching and ice, and muscle relaxers give relief. I have started taking a towel and stretching my calf muscle out while laying down as someone said better to stretch without weight bearing, and I’ll try the ice shortly. I’ve been icing the knee and that doesn’t help so icing the calf itself makes sense. Also started riding a bike which typically is always therapeutic for most any knee issue, especially as opposed to running or even walking. Will post back after a few days of this.

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      9 10

      How is your knee now?

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    9 10

    My Husband has surgery 12 days ago. The day after surgery he felt great. Very little knee pain at all. That night his calf started hurting. Since then he’s had the worst pain he’s ever had in his calf. We have no idea how to help it. Doctors office keeps ignoring him. Let me know if anyone found a cure!

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    9 10

    4 weeks post op and my PT says walk heel toe- when I focus on that there is comfort. However, I went in a pool (water temp was in low 80s) and when I was done it was the best my leg has felt since the surgery! It of course only lasted the rest of the day, but THERE IS HOPE! I mean, not for the people from 2016 who started this thread, but moving forward! So, water movement if you can and some stretching. I do calf stretches and use a roller stick like runners use before bed. So far there is improvement.

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    9 10

    I had my second knee surgery two weeks ago and the day after surgery the pain in my calf started. My calf looks bruised, and slightly swollen and very tight. My knee is 95% better but my calf is killing me. I can warm it up and walk normally for an hour or two but if I stop even for a few minutes it stiffens up. Getting up in the middle of the night is the worst. I have to hobble for a couple of minutes before I can even limp.

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    9 10

    Finally people seem to be experiencing what I have! I had acl reconstruction on 28/08/19 and my knee was recovering well then started to get a pain in my right calve if my leg is elevated on some pillows then I’m in no pain at all but as soon as I put my foot down lower than my waist the pain comes when standing to go toilet the pain is agony almost bringing me to tears until I rush back to bed and elevate my leg then the pain starts to go away my knee feels ok it’s just the calve pain That’s really getting me down is there anything I can do?? How long did it last for people?

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    9 10

    November 2019- Not sure how long these posts have been here, but I had the same experience with calf pain. I had both knees done at the same time. The first day I had minimal knee pain. That was because the surgeon injects Lidocaine into the area during surgery. On day two, the knee pain started and later that day I began having excruciating calf pain. Nothing I did helped. I was taking Dilaudid for pain which helped the knee pain but did nothing for the calf pain. I was in agony. I called the doctor office, but did not get a call back till the next day. In the past, I had taken a muscle relaxant for back spasm, Flexaril so I took one. Within a short time I got relief. For me, that was the answer. I took the medicine for two days then stopped it. I did practice walking heel to toe like it said in this blog. I hope this helps someone else. Ask your doctor about it as soon as you get that calf pain; I hope you don’t have this problem, but there is help. Keep asking. May God bless you.

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    9 10

    Had knee surgery yesterday Dec 2, 2019 for Mcl that had multiple tears and torn Acl. I started to have excruciating pain in my calf and front of thigh 4 hours later. I have iced calf . Taken prescribed dose pain medication . Tried heal toe walking and stretching. my leg is red and swollen. I have bruising front and back of knee, on back of calf and around ankle.
    My new orthopaedic surgeon said he never had seen knee ligaments damaged so severely. Surgery took a little over 3 hrs. I was in a bad automobile accident December 16 2018. The police report found the other driver was at fault. She was under influence of drugs and alcohol and hit cal trans sign trailer at 100 miles per hour. Launching it 35 ft in air and landing on front of my car on freeway. 72 mph to 0mph instantly. She was Under influence drugs and alcohol. She only had minimum liability insurance. I had 8 million dollar full coverage commercial policy that included uninsured and non insured Motorist. I apologise for the length of post. I hope no one has to endure what has happened to me this last year. I am self employed general contractor and have a disabled wife sole provider . I have no money in the bank, lost everything, my business, house, vehicles. I rent a house from a friend. I had to take pre settlement loans for 16 and 18 thousand dollars it has been 9 months since loans I owe almost 100,000 dollars on loans because of interest. $2.525,000 medical bills wife and me plus 3 million in debt owed.
    I have talked to numerous bankruptcy attorneys they all agreed Because of the complexity
    Of case . Estimated cost of all fees $18,000 dollars. Money I don’t have .
    My first orthopedic surgeon referred and approved by my insurance company tried alternative treatment of knee acupuncture ,Physical therapy, chiropractor. None of these worked. I retained law firm 12/20/2018 . my insurance company Has paid totaled car. Balance off. Nothing else. This is a nightmare. Are good friends who have allowed us to rent house to us until they sold there home out of state. We have end of December to move out. We have been denied cash and food aid. And Social security said it could be another year. I will keep trying calf pain suggestions from post. I am asking for any advice on our situation and if you can Please pray for my family.

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    9 10

    I am a serious athlete and tennis player who struggled for years with pain deep in the upper lateral calf. This pain developed after I returned to sports activity following a partial meniscectomy in 2008. I will spare you my story of 6 to 7 years where I could not walk or even stand for more than 5 minutes without calf pain (while my knee itself was just fine). I thought I had either a muscle tear, compartment syndrome, or nerve damage — but tests ruled these out. Eventually the pain subsided, but only after many years. In late October this year I tore the meniscus in my OTHER knee, and after observing similar calf pain following that event (which just went away last week), I have come to believe I understand what is going on: for some people, a meniscectomy promotes short or long term irritation/swelling in the knee joint and/or alters the biomechanics of the knee/leg in such a way that that excessive strains are placed on the surrounding musculature including the muscles deep in the calf. These muscles are over taxed and/or over stretched. Most frequently, I am guessing, this involves the lack of full extension (including hyperextension that most of us naturally have) or other subtle alterations of the angle of the leg and knee components at full leg extension or otherwise. I think that these muscle strains and irritation in the calf quite often may be analogous to the strains and excessive forces on a door hinge when something is blocking the door from closing all the way in a natural fashion. This could occur very quickly after surgery, or (as in my case) only later after returning to a level of activity (or sports) where the repetitive dysfunctional biomechanics would cause symptoms. Following on from these effects, muscle imbalances can develop and persist. I believe this type of syndrome, evidenced by calf pain, is a risk factor that people should be aware of before they get a meniscectomy. No doubt these symptoms can occur without a meniscectomy, and meniscectomy can even cure these symptoms in some people by restoring full extension and normal biomechanics to those lacking in same. But for some people like those in this thread it appears this procedure is a trigger event for serious and persistent calf pain.

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    9 10

    Had meniscus tear repair as well as tendon repair and my surgeon did micro fracturing (drilled small holes into leg bone to promote stronger bone). I have had calf pain and stiffnesx for over a year ever since this minor knee surgery, What a disaster asked repeatedly about this crazy pain and repeatedly I get no help….never again!

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