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Apprehensive

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Pre-Op Area' started by denn, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. denn

    denn junior member
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    Hi all. I feel so down to a point where I am on the verge of cancelling my op.
    Received a letter this morning which was sent to my GP.

    This has seriously put me right off. Reading this letter seems to have knocked me for six, to a point where I I want to terminate this operation.

    The letter states and I quote : The benefits of TKR are improvement of pain in 70-80% of patients who have this. Many patients will never have total absence of pain with knee replacement. A lot will continue to complain of discomfort of stiffness, noises and other symptoms like numbness lateral to scar.

    The letter also goes on to mention my obesity and serious risks include deep vein thrombosis, fatal pulmonarybembolism, amputation above the knee, death because of cardiac arrest, myocardial infarction, stroke etc etc. He is quite young and heavier than normal patients.

    Because he is on the bigger side we will have to keep adequate time available for surgery.
     
  2. SusieShoes

    SusieShoes FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Oh, Denn. If I were there I would hug you and explain that letter as just a technicality. All TKR recipients get some version of it, whether face to face with their OS or other medical person, or in the consent to surgery. ALL people who have a TKR run those risks. Every surgery runs most of them, especially the death part. They always throw that one in. In the States, they make sure you sign a paper stating you know about these risks. It’s hard to read, but that’s the reality. And, well, we overweight people already know our weight is an issue.

    On the plus side, they called you young. :)

    As far as some people never getting full relief from pain, that can happen. Most people have a wonderful result and are very happy. Keep that in mind.

    At one point in my recovery, about two months in, my husband asked me if I never got better than I was then —still some pain, lots of stiffness, had to sleep on my back at night still, taking Tylenol for pain during the day— would I still get the surgery. And I said yes. My pain was SO MUCH LESS! The rest was annoying, but I could live with it. I was walking so much better. Even with my complaints, I was better off by far.

    I’m nine months out and have no pain at all, so cheers for the full recovery! :yes!: It can take a year or more for that to happen. And that numbness lateral to the scar that they talk about? Got that. My left leg is numb below the knee lateral to the scar for a good palm-size area. And I don’t care. I hardly pay attention to that. I notice it mostly when I shave my legs. Interestingly, my right leg (I had both knees done) has no numb spot. But a numb spot doesn’t make a huge difference in most people’s lives. Getting rid of pain does.

    I hope you give yourself some time to process the letter, which is information you would receive anyway, and decide to stay with the surgery. The reasons you want it haven’t changed. Neither have the many benefits you hope to get from it. And if you want to talk about anything at all that was in the letter, please do so.

    Members here have experienced a great many things along their journeys.
     
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    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
  3. NickUK

    NickUK junior member

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    Hi Denn,

    I am 6'3" and 20 stone all but a couple of pounds. I am also 50 which is younger than you. I had a similar letter but also had a chat from the surgeon who explained the realism and also that being younger meant I would be better prepared for recovery.

    I suspect they are adding "butt covering" wording as they would with medication leaflets. My experience of hospitals indicates that if they envisage issues they will use it to wriggle out of having to do it.

    You will be fine fella!

    My only gripe is you are getting it done sooner than me but will forgive a day :loll:
     
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  4. denn

    denn junior member
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    I thank you both for your kind words and comforts.
    Yes, it did come as a shock by reading that letter. It has put me right off to a point where all I want to do is do what I like to do and that is to go out and drown my sorrows. I know that wont help and I must face up to the reality.
    I have just been to purchase a Dressing gown for the Hospital, I didn't look for summer clothes because I look at this summer as a summer written off! It will be my wife's and my 40th Wedding Anniversary in July and we wanted to go somewhere nice. We do hope I will be able to fly off somewhere but, it may well be a few months too soon, I dunno!
    As for you NickUK you seem to be quite a bonny chappy, more bonny than myself which gives me comfort. I'm currently 103kg after a massive binge with Christmas and my Twins 30th Birthday bash recently. I do go to the gym and I'm probably fitter than I was years ago.
    Kind regards Denn.
     
  5. KM1972

    KM1972 junior member

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    @denn, I’m 45 and just a little on the chubby side (I’d call it baby weight, but my youngest is 14 so I probably can’t get away with that anymore) and got the same speech for my first TKR last year and my second (this coming Wednesday). We’re all anxious ahead of this surgery but you’ll be just fine. I’ll be rooting for you from Colorado!
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
  6. NickUK

    NickUK junior member

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    103KG? I have heavier shoes than that!

    I'm booked to go to Florida in July with a 9 hour flight each way. I took advice and they seemed to think this would be fine as long as I was sensible.

    With you KM1972, I think mine is baby weight too and my youngest 23.
     
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  7. denn

    denn junior member
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    I have been told to stop whinging and get it done. I have never had anything like this done before. I have gone through two cartilage ops where they did give me a general Aneasthetic but I didn't suffer any reactions to those.
    Suppose I shall have to grin and bear it.
    Thanks for the support it means a lot.
    Kind regards Denn from Greater Manchester.
     
  8. NickUK

    NickUK junior member

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    Sure you will be fine, you can send me one of those beers after

    Us Brits have to stick together on here
     
  9. Jaycey

    Jaycey SUPER MODERATOR Moderator

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    @denn So sorry you had to suffer the "scary letter" pre-op. Spend some time in the knee post op area. Lots of happy members - many who are off living life again.
    I wouldn't necessarily rule this out. Yes, you won't be want to run a marathon but certainly a relaxing break would be great!
     
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  10. SherrieT

    SherrieT member

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    At least yours said you were young. Mine just said something along the lines of "you know you can die, right?"

    But then I figured I would be in more danger just getting to the hospital. We had to drive through Boston :yikes::shocked::scaredycat:
     
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  11. Josephine

    Josephine FORUM ADMIN, DIRECTOR Administrator

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    While not altogether untrue, this looks much worse than it is. After all, around 600,000 TKRs get done every year in the US and 70,000 in the UK. So 80% of that is actually pretty good! The remaining 30% also mostly ranges from a mild ache upwards. So a much lesser number of them are troubled with bad pain afterwards.

    There is also this report: American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, 90 percent of people who have a knee replacement have a lot less pain. Most of these people are able to perform daily activities and stay active. In many cases, they’re able to resume activities like golf and walking that their arthritic pain made them give up years ago.
    These are all complications for any surgery even an appendicectomy or a knee arthroscopy. I even had that list read out to me when I had a lump take out of my forearm! They are legally required to tell you all this, it's as simple as that.
     
  12. Arttie

    Arttie senior

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    x
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2018 at 4:35 PM
  13. ertuck

    ertuck junior member

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    You should try driving in Florence Italy, they will not let you cross the road even on pedestrian crossings .It took us about 15 mins to get over a roundabout on foot and horns blaring at you , nearly hit lots of times .Then I saw two Nuns trying to cross exactly the same roundabout and still it was just as dangerous for them as it seems that it is a sign of weakness to slow down and they deliberately drive at you to frighten the life out of you even the Nuns were not exempt..
     
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  14. robhunt3

    robhunt3 member

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    I didn't have the letter but had some booklets and a talk from my consultant before signing the consent form - and he was very blunt and to the point about it all. Of course there are risks, as with any surgery, and they have to tell you about these because that's what makes it informed consent.

    The vast majority of people end up much better off than before surgery, but it's always going to be a dilemma - it was for me when put so bluntly, but I wanted to get on with my life with a new knee, and hopefully it'll work out exactly like that.

    It's not easy, but in my experience it's a short term inconvenience compared to a life of pain and inactivity.

    All the best!
     
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  15. robhunt3

    robhunt3 member

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    I worked in Rome for a while and one of my Italian colleagues used to park his old Fiat 500 by physically crashing back and forwards into the front and rear cars where there was even a remote chance it might be big enough to form a parking space. He'd use the same method to get out. Quite funny, and I saw lots of people doing that.
     
  16. NickUK

    NickUK junior member

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    Rome scared the hell out of me too. "Nudging" is accepted over there and in some level streets they don't bother applying handbrakes
     
  17. denn

    denn junior member
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    Been for the pre op stuff today, more blood and urine plus blood pressure etc. I also saw anethestist.

    Was asked who would be looking after me etc plus other items like wearing the stockings and asking if I needed anything else to the home for my assistance. I was told that I wouldn't be able to drive for 6-12 weeks after the op, some insurance companies have stringent policies where this is concerned and could be void should I be responsible for an accident. I have not to fly on an aeroplane for three months after in case of DVT.

    I then saw Anethetist who checked me over and even said my BMI was fine regardless of what the surgeon told me. As long as I was fit he didn't mind. He told me that they wont be using a general anesthetic but the injectiuon into the spine which will numb me from belly button down. I told him I didn't really want to know what was happening but he then said, they give me something to sedate me but not sll patients fall asleep and cannot guarantee that I would, Asking if I could take an ipod in with me, the answer was no because everything in there needs to be sterile.
    So there I have it, Monday 26th 8-45 bang, a new knee.

    Kind regards Denn.
     
  18. Nick-UK

    Nick-UK new member

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    Perfect, 3 days after me

    I am having the spinal too but have been numb from the neck up for years so sure I wont be aware of anything!
     
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  19. Jaycey

    Jaycey SUPER MODERATOR Moderator

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    Just tell them on the day that you do not want to see or hear anything. They will watch you throughout the procedure to ensure you are sedated and asleep. Waking during the procedure can happen but it is rare.
     
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  20. Celle

    Celle FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    Most people seem to start driving between 4 and 6 weeks post-op.
    You need to be absolutely certain that you can move your foot from accelerator to brake, to do an emergency stop.
    You also need to be off the heavy-duty narcotics and have a clear head.

    Some insurance companies require a clearance from your surgeon, so check your insurance for their requirements.

    I drive a manual (stick shift) and I started driving at about 5 weeks post-op. For about a week before I turned the engine on, I would practice moving my feet quickly from one pedal to another, to be sure I could do it in an emergency.
     
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