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I put on weight and developed knee pain after delivery, what do I do?

Q: I gave birth to a baby girl 2.5 months back. She is a healthy baby with no problems. She was born by caesarian section operation but the operation was done after I had experienced labour pains for almost one full day. Artificial labour pains were induced in me and the process was on but slow. The uterus took a lot of time for opening up and after 1 day the doctor found that the uterus was not sufficiently open for delivery and suddenly the fetal heartbeat came down so I was operated upon at the last moment. My height is 5 feet and present weight is 67 kgs. I had gained 17 kgs. during the course of my pregnancy. Since then I have lost 9 kgs, but still I am over weight. The problem is whenever I feed my baby girl while sitting on the bed with my legs folded. After 10 minutes or so when I try to get up, I experience severe pain in my knees. This pain has started after delivery and also when I stand up I feel pain in my feet and have problem balancing myself. Please tell me about why this pain is there in my knees and feet.

A:Congratulations on having a baby girl. It is nice to know that you have lost a considerable part of the weight you gained during your pregnancy, you must lose the rest of it soon. Overweight is always a problem especially with the problems that you have explained. The symptoms of pain in the knees and feet that you have explained seem to be rather non-specific. It is unlikely to be due to a knee/foot problem. The problem seems to be weak muscles of the leg. I wonder if you do any kind of exercise. Please start some regular exercise now. I know it is difficult with a small baby but you will have to find time for a little exercise. If you want you can take the help of a physiotherapist or a yoga instructor but you need to do something. If you cannot do systematic leg exercises then the next best thing would be to walk at least a few km everyday (any time of the day that is convenient), the walks would automatically exercise most leg muscles. If the problem persists despite regular exercise and despite losing weight, please consult an orthopedic surgeon. At this point this seems unnecessary as the pain is either due to weakness in the muscles or due to fatigue.

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