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Can I run again if I have surgery either partial or full knee replacement?

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Pre-Op Area' started by RunA42K, Feb 2, 2011.

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  1. RunA42K

    RunA42K post-grad
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    Look like 6 weeks from yesterday March 21 I will be having a TKR. It is a relief actually. I have been dealing with knee pain for 3 1/2 years. At first it was all about getting my knee better so that I could run, but although I hope to be able to run again, right now it is a quality of life issue. I am so tired of being in pain. Looks like my knee will be the Verilast. I have seen their commercials on TV (never thinking that was something I'd ever need) www.rediscoveryourgo.com I liked the doctor VERY much. I had read up on him before making the appointment, and although he is in the same orthopedic group (different location) than my other OS they don't think just alike. I was hoping that my new OS today would tell me the things that I wanted to hear and he did. I also used questions that I learned from this great forum to ask him. I felt like we had a mutual respect today because he knew also that I had been doing my homework. Tomorrow I will get all the wheels set into motion.
     
  2. Surfsister

    Surfsister senior

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    Okay, I saw my OS this morning for my two year check-up. He said everything looks great. One of the things he asked me was what activities I was doing. He liked all that he heard . . . except . . . he wasn't thrilled about the running. He asked how often I run. I told him once a week (although it's usually less than that). He told me it was okay to run once a week, but didn't think I should do anymore running than that.

    That's fine with me since, as I said, I'm a surfer and not a runner. Still, I thought I should be completely straightforward about what he said today. Will I continue to run? Yes. Will I run more than once a week? No.

    But I'm not giving up my skateboards!
     
  3. Josephine

    Josephine FORUM ADMIN, NURSE DIRECTOR Administrator

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    Just a gentle warning: the Verilast is certainly as good as any other knee so please don't think I'm saying otherwise, but the wording on that website is a great example of marketing hype!

    For instance
    1. a combination of remarkable materials that were tested to simulate 30 years of wear performance. That’s more than twice the length of testing of knee replacements made from traditional materials.
    2. (and) that is more resistant to common implant wear. When these two surfaces work together in the joint, they do amazing and unprecedented things
    3. was subjected to 45 million cycles, or simulated steps. That’s equal to around 30 years of physical activity.


    Now these statements may well be true but it reads like this a new development which is exclusively applicable to this knee which isn't. It's actually a pretty average performance for all knees! TKRs have been lasting for 30+ years for decades!

    And there is a nice little caveat in the paragraphs at the bottom which, having read all the 'good' stuff, people may not bother to read or absorb.
    The results of in-vitro wear simulation testing have not been proven to quantitatively predict clinical wear performance. Also, a reduction in total polyethylene wear volume or wear rate alone may not result in an improved clinical outcome as wear particle size and morphology are also critical factors in the evaluation of the potential for wear mediated osteolysis and associated aseptic implant loosening. Particle size and morphology were not evaluated as part of the testing. Other risks can include loosening, fracture, dislocation and infection.

    Do not perform high impact activities such as running and jumping unless your surgeon tells you the bone has healed and these activities are acceptable.


    This too is applicable to all joint replacements. And note the change in literary style from consumer friendly to scientific!

    All I am saying is, do be careful to take a pinch of salt with what you read. Carefully written, the text can easily make the standard sound like a new miracle development! It is, after all, a sales pitch.
     
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  4. BigGene

    BigGene Sr Bonesmartie

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    OK, time for me to rant. The disclaimer that Josephine as well as the 15 year number that most of us hear from doctors or read about is all the result of lawyers and insurance companies, not science.

    The hipe in the advertising Josephine presents is followed by the legal doublespeak intended to protect against lawsuits for malpractice. Similarly when doctors use a 15 year life expectancy they are again under estimating to avoid the "you told me my knee would last 30 years" lawsuit.

    The reality is wear and tear on the implant materials is much like the wear and tear on our real knee tissues. For some it will last a lifetime without any arthritis. For most it depends on the load we subject our real or implanted knees to over our lifetimes or time with an implant.

    Our weight and type of usage clearly effects both knee types, real or implant.
    If you get an implant and spend the rest of your life sitting in your recliner with a remote control it will last forever. (Not that there is anything wrong with that.)

    If you have a BMI of 40 and run 15 miles a day barefoot on concrete you will likely wear out the materials a bit quicker.

    The truth, as Josephine says, is that the implants will last a very long time. The amout of time clearly depends on usage and any other factors that will never be perfectly predictable.

    We each make our own decisions on what we value in our post TKR lives. An improved quality of life is what we are all after. How we accomplish and define that is an individual decision.

    The research study reported last spring was the result of what appeared to be a quality scientific study. It seems to confirm that in the 7 year timeframe there was no discernable difference in the state of the implants.

    I suggest that it is unlikely that the non-compliant rule-breakers knees will suddenly all fail at year 8 or 9 or 10. Will they wear out sooner than the rule following patients. Well, maybe, but it seems to me that the study did establish that people can and should make there own decision base on their own judgement of what is important for them.

    It seems clear that the study has caused a significant change in the advice given by knowlegable doctors.

    That said, docswill continue to be controled by liability insurance issues driven by lawyers, courts and juries.

    For me I will do what seems right for me. I want to ski and hike and ride a bike. I would even love to jog again, if that is possible. I think we all can and should follow our own paths. The doctors will be happiest if we don't ask so they don't have to tell.

    That's how I see it.
     
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  5. RunA42K

    RunA42K post-grad
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    Very well said Gene! Once again let me say how glad I am that I found this forum. You all give me hope and are very inspiring to me. I am one of those patients who will test the waters. The doctor told me that he does not recommend running...well that said, once I am completely healed (how long does that take any way?) I am going to try running. I will not run like I did before, I will bike and row and walk, but I will run some too. I have to!!

    My official day is.....ta da da daaa
    March 28, 2010 RTKR (Wow that looks strange typing that after my name!

    Bonnie :th_jumpy:
     
  6. RunA42K

    RunA42K post-grad
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    I appreciate all of the information you pass on to me Josephine. I know that they all try to make 'their's' sound the best, like a new miracle!
     
  7. RunA42K

    RunA42K post-grad
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    Whoops...that is March 28, 2011 RTKR
     
  8. Jamie

    Jamie ADMINISTRATOR Administrator

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    Congratulations on your date!!! It will be here before you know it and you'll be on your way to a fantastic journey. :thmb:
     
  9. cotton1958

    cotton1958 supremo

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    I had the TV on last night, and heard the Verilast commercial. It sure caught my eye/ear. I meant to google it and look on here to see if it was discussed yet, and ended up doing so just now. And of course it was.

    Interesting use of the '30' years. Guess it would make someone who doesn't know much about knees think it's the 1st one out there. And then the part about each knee is made for each patient using the MRI to make a model. Sounds good.

    Let's pray all our knees last 30 years no matter what we get, and knees get better and better as we all test them out throughout our lifetimes.

    Kind of gives me thoughts of having braces, getting wisdom teeth out, and 35 years later someone suddenly gets TMJD with closed locked jaws, and everyone points fingers at someone else including the stuck patient with no where to go to. Another story.

    Seems like the Verilast issue should be split off from the original topic to me.
     
  10. Josephine

    Josephine FORUM ADMIN, NURSE DIRECTOR Administrator

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    You make some very important points, Gene, and thank you. However, I would argue regarding the meaning of what lasts a long time. I meant that a properly implanted prosthesis will last 30+ years, not just the prostheses. The advances in technology have not just been in biomechanical engineering, metallurgy and implant manufacture but in surgical technique and understanding of the interaction of metal and plastic implants within the body and between each other. There are so many aspects under scrutiny these days but they all come down to the same thing: we understand so much more about the entire thing so it's no longer correct to say the prosthesis lasts x years, it has to be that the implanted prosthesis will last that long.

    Other than that, you are spot on. I've been saying it on here for the past 5 years, that caveat that (some) surgeons love to throw out is their "get out of jail free" card and are suppositions based upon old information.
     
  11. BigGene

    BigGene Sr Bonesmartie

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    Joshephine,
    I agree completely. The "balance" and "alignment" of the implanted knee is critical to the short and longterm sucess of the procedure. I left that out of my argument because I wanted to focus on the "legalistic" and "commercial" aspects in my discussion.

    Thanks for clarifying.
     
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  12. pilot1

    pilot1 graduate

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    Josephine is going to love this.. I know she has missed me, I kept this debate lively for a while.
    The day before I had my knee done I read about the FDA approval for the claim of a 30 year knee. No other manufacturer can say that.. so its not just marketing hype. They did the testing no one else has done under FDA watchful eye and got approved.
    I just happened to be getting a Smith and Nephew knee and saw the article at 9pm at night with surgery at 9AM next morning. I thought I was going to have a panic attack.. wondering am I getting a Verilast kNEE??
    The first thing I asked the doc that morning before I would let anyone touch me was about the material in the knee, turns out with the journey knee it has the oxinium and the poly for verilast.
    My journey so to speak was to first find a knee then a doc.

    I consider myself well educated and here is my conclusion.
    The DR is and always will be the most important decision you make when deciding on a knee replacement.
    Jo is right all knees are pretty much the same.
    If the Doc you found is not doing in excess of 100 implants a year run away please.
    I had a guy come by the house the other day to buy something I was selling and he was limping. I said, why are you limping and he said he had a knee replaced a year ago. The doc he used is one I ran away from.
    He has no ROM and is still swelled up badly and I am feeling great.

    I had to travel to Dallas to get the right doc.
    I do still feel I picked the right knee and I have that feel good thing about Oxinium that could last thirty years or more but:


    Once you have the surgery you may change your mind about the running.
    I am not going to kid you its a painful surgery but you will make it and sounds like you have a lot of determination. Get healed up but be in no hurry to run.
    I swore I would snow ski again but because I had a hip done too just can not imagine an accident and revision.. I am in perfect shape now enjoying painfree life and do not want to risk that.
    I lift weight 4 days a week and bike on a stationary bike 3 to 4 times a week or more.
    If you love running and its a focal point of your life I can see why you would want to continue but you may consider that millions of people ride bikes and love it as well. Biking can be done as a family so you and your family could go biking together and enjoy life just as much.

    Someone else said they mourned the fact they could not run.. I mourned the fact that I would give up skiing more than you can imagine..
    I may one day go try it for a day and see how it goes only if I get into perfect condition, loose a few extra pounds that is.
    I wish you well and please pm me if you want to talk about the smith and nephew knee's off forum.

    PS. I have a buddy who had a knee replaced and he feels like a kid again running up the stairs at his house like a kid and kneeling to shoot target practice.. and he did not get my knee, it was some other brand..
     
  13. IowaGal

    IowaGal new member

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    My surgeon said, "nothing high impact, including running." I have had one knee done and the other is "shot" per the surgeon, however, he doesn't want to do the surgery until I lose some more weight. :cry1: I got a second opinion at the local university hospital and they likewise wanted me to lose some weight but, meanwhile, gave me a shoe insert that made my weight shift onto a part of the knee that had more cartilage left. Three steps, a loud popping sound and I had such relief! Admittedly, it's a stop gap and I still need the surgery but I've bought some time for $10, the cost of the shoe insert. :th_yahoo:
     
  14. RunA42K

    RunA42K post-grad
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    Thank you for all of your input and good information! I am the one who is in mourning for my running. I will try it again. I don't know when, but when the time is right which brings me to two other questions that I have been meaning to ask and those are:

    1. How long before I can go up and down the stairs in my house (my bedroom is upstairs, after scope surgery I slept on the couch for two nights).

    2. Generally how long does it take for the bone to actually heal? I had a broken arm, fell running last Valentine's Day, it was healed in 5 weeks. Probably that was not as traumatic as a TKR, but I would like a general idea of how long the healing actually takes. Maybe you have some good insight on that Josephine?

    Bonnie :wink:

     
  15. Jamie

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    Bonnie, you will be able to go up and down stairs (slowly, but you can do it) before you come home from the hospital. You will do one foot at a time for a while as you build back the strength in your quads to do stairs normally. Everyone heals at a different rate, but you should be able to cautiously do stairs normally in 4-6 weeks.

    Here is a thread from the library that talks about how long it takes for the various parts of the body to heal. You can see from Jo's chart that LOTS of healing takes place after the original incision is healed and looking good. This is the thing that confuses most people...they feel like, once the wound heals, things should be back to normal inside also.
     
  16. Jamie

    Jamie ADMINISTRATOR Administrator

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    Pilot....it's always a treat to hear from you. Jo is gonna LOVE your post!!!

    But I do hope you can keep any discussions about your knee in the public forum rather than in PMs. This information really helps others and I hate to see it hidden in private messages!
     
  17. IowaGal

    IowaGal new member

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    Stairs were slow but doable when I got home. I still am slow on stairs but I think my muscles had atrophied from long years of not be able to bend that knee properly. My greatest issue after my knee surgery was in the bathroom, LOL. The tub is very close in front of the toilet in our upstairs bathroom and bending my knee enough to sit on that toilet was problematic. I pretty much used the downstairs bathroom but after some more physical therapy, I was good to "go" anywhere. :)
     
  18. Josephine

    Josephine FORUM ADMIN, NURSE DIRECTOR Administrator

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    Well thank you, Doug! Never thought I would hear that from you :th_heehee: You have never ceased to be able to surprise me!

    As for stairs, Bonnie, I was doing stairs from day 4 but gently. It was about 4 months before I could walk up and down them normally.
     
  19. referee54

    referee54 omega

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    Stairs were a bear for me---it took some time and it took some doing. I have no problems now, though; I go up and down stairs like I did when I was 18---it does take some work---ROM and strengthening the muscles.

    Tim C.
     
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  20. jerseychick

    jerseychick Sr Bonesmartie

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    Going up the stairs was not a problem when I got home from the hospital as I was determined to sleep in my own bed. I ditched the walker when I came home from the hospital, crutches were much easier for me, so up the stairs I went. Going down the stairs took some work. One foot at a time was easy holding on and with one crutch. I worked very hard to conquer the stairs going down foot over foot. I used to practice working on my quad strength by standing on one leg on the lowest step and then bending the knee and straightening it. Now after 8 months, I can "gallop" down the stairs and run up and down with no problem and not think about my knee.
     
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