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Has anyone had 3 knee replacements - same knee?

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Gabby2011

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Has anyone had to have a third replacement in the same knee? All signs so far point to this being the situation for me after have a partial in 06, a full in 07 and a loose replacement right now - all on the same knee.

I would love to hear how you addressed this - did you get second opinions etc.

Thank you.
 

milanfire2

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Yes,I have had 6 surg. on left knee number 7 April 5. 2-artho., 1- bore holes in femer bone for regrowth of cartilage,4- unispacer( steel plate) 5- partial 2009.6-TKR 2010 now another revision April 5,2011. And yes got second opinion. And yes I work 2 jobs but they want me to retire. LOL
 

Jamie

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Hi, Gabby2011....welcome to BoneSmart! I'm glad you decided to join our forum.

You know, we have had some members who have had to convert to a full TKR from a partial and then have a revision on the TKR, so you may hear from them.

But since you have only had one full knee replacement, a revision on that knee is going to be pretty much like any TKR revision.

Can you tell us a little more about what has gone on with these two surgeries? Did the same surgeon do them both? How long have they lasted and what caused them to need to be revised?

We'll be better able to advise you if we know that. By the way, it would help ever so much if you would put your surgery dates (and type of surgery) in a signature that will show each time you post. Here are instructions (very easy) for doing that.
 
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Gabby2011

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In 2006 It was determined that I needed a full knee replacement. I was 40 and they said that both my knees are like "80 year old knees". My mom has three arthritis' and on my dads side there is degenerative disc disease, which I have and I have had C6 & C7 replaced.

When I woke up from surgery (this MD is so nice I really like him) he said that he decided to do a partial because that's where it was worse. Within about 6 months, I saw an MD at another top ortho clinic who said based on an xray that he felt it was loose and ordered a bone scan and suggested I see what the original MD says. He was good about it, said it was over his comfort level and referred me to another MD in his office. He did a revision to a total knee in 2007. Last fall my knee started freezing up and swelling really bad. When it swells, I can't bend or lift my leg. I literally have to pull on my pants to lift it... very strange. I went to an ortho quick clinic when I had a flair up and she manipulated the knee and felt the "slip/wiggle" that I feel when I lift my leg to walk. She did an xray and said that she saw lines to show loosening and given when she felt, she thought a bone scan was needed to get right down to it.

So I made that appt and called the MD that did the surgery. I'm the first to admit that I didn't have enough follow-up appts with him - but I had no symptoms, I was feeling good other than the bad leg days we always have now and then and I didn't want to waste time or money. His PA said that a bone scan was overboard and we should just do a blood test for infection. Because the bone scan can show both - I kept the appt. I got the results last night on which was probably my most painful day ever so far. I called his office to schedule an appt and the MD himself called me at home. I met him inbetween surgeries today and he's confident that there is no infection, but he doesn't know how it could be loose after only 4 years. I showed him the bone scan result, I showed him the xray that was done last month and I reminded him about my partial becoming loose. He did say that he had to create a spacer below the lower leg "platform piece" because of what was cut out for the partial. I also told him about my history of degenerative bone disease.

The other office has stated that it does need to be fixed... it's all a matter of how long I can stand it and what's going on in my life.

I'm going to meet with my original surgeon again week after next and he's going to do another xray and compare it to the xray from right after the surgery to see the differences. He says that something is wrong - but maybe it's just a pinched nerve or something so he as prescribed Disarcali or Sasa.. something(spelling?) a non- narcotic heavy duty asprin since I can't take ibuprofen.

So.. this is where I sit. I'm concerned about this MD's ability to fix it, do I switch centers and go to another MD? I'm concerned about a new guy not believing how sucky my bones are and also about the idea of anything in this world that will make a joint replacement cooperate.

I will thank god tonight in my prayers for leading me to this site. I have learned so much already about coping, asking questions of MD's, things to consider. I'm only 44 and to have 3 within 4 years sounds strange to me.. but obviously is not that uncommon (unfortunately for all).
 

Jamie

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Gabby, I'm going to be very honest with you. You obviously have some problems going on that need to be fixed - and fixed properly. You must search out another doctor as soon as you can and not waste your time going back to the practice that did your first two surgeries. Believe me, when you find the right doctor, he will know how to handle all of your issues with the implant and your bone disease.

I do not believe either of these two doctors that operated on you have the expertise to deal with your current situation. My opinion is that you need to get yourself to a first class revision specialist. These are specialty surgeons who work the more complex cases. They are normally located in larger cities. Since I don't know what city you live in, you may have to drive to see a doctor of this caliber. But finding someone like this is critical.

The second surgeon's comment that he didn't understand how it could be loose in only 4 years speaks volumes! That and the fact that they are trying to put blame for your pain on some pinched nerve.

And please don't think that because you didn't attend follow-up appointments that you somehow "caused" this to happen. Loosening of an implant is not your fault. For the most part, implants loosen because of infection or poor surgical techniques. I also doubt that your problems with degenerative bone disease had any part of what has happened.

Please let us know what we can do to help and support you. We really care about you and want this fixed properly....and quickly so you can go on with your life.
 
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Gabby2011

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Jamie - Thank you SOOO MUCH! I live in Minnesota. Last week I did some checking around and found an MD that one of my friends highly recommends and he's been noted as one of the "Top Orthopedic Surgeons for Women" in our State. A little evident because I have to wait several weeks to get in.. but I am happy to wait. By the time of the appointment with this MD, I will have everything that my last surgeon has said/done/written/xrayed and I will bring that with me.

I initially wanted to use him as a second opinion, but you are absolutely right. I will know when I find the MD that is confident in his skill and knowledge to fix this correctly.

You have helped confirmed inner feelings and I will trust my instincts.

One last question.. I know that everyone's situation is completely different.. but have you (or anyone) had the situation where your knee/leg all of a sudden swells and you can't move/lift/stand on it.. or where when you lift your leg to take steps, it actually feels like it's separating and going back together with pain below and above the knee? I know I'm not crazy.. but I'm curious to what others feel.
 

RestAssured

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Hi Gabby! Welcome to Bone Smart!

I am glad that you found us because this is the best place to find information that will help you!

My situation is different (infection) from yours but I have had my right knee operated on 2 times, and will have a revisionist put a new knee in on April the 13th. I wanted to stick with my original OS because he was "nice" but he was in over his head!

Please let Jamie help you find a revisionist close to where you live so you can get an opinion from someone who has seen what you are going through!



 

Jamie

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That's a pretty unique pain and it sounds awful. I don't recall anyone describing something like that, but it's all the more reason you need to get to an excellent revision surgeon.

Here is a link to some questions to take with you. In your case, you're going to want to be sure to ask the doctor how many revisions he does each year and what some of the more difficult cases have involved. This is critical....that he is a revision specialist.

Don't feel like you have to only see one other doctor either.....see two or three or more until you are comfortable with his expertise.

I also recommend that you do some reading in the BoneSmart Library and post op forum. You may find additional information to help you there. If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to post. Or....just stop in and say hello....you're part of our BoneSmart family now!!
 
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Gabby2011

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How do you all find your doctors? I'm in the Twin Cities (St. Paul/Minneapolis) and I didn't want to post that information here thinking that my doctor or his staff would be lurking here and then call me out when I get to the office... but I'm open to all suggestions for surgeons.
 

BigGene

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Is the Mayo Clinic within driving distance. I would consider calling and getting an appointment specifically with a revision specialist. Their site list the doctors by department and their training and sub-specialties.

With all respect to your friend, anyone who has a good result (and that is most people) think their doc was great. That doesn't mean they have experience with difficult cases.
 

Jamie

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Gabby, there is a clinic locator here in BoneSmart that you can use. You type in your zip code and a distance you're willing to drive and you'll get a list of clinics. All of them have links to their web sites, so you go there and read about their doctors to find the ones who do revisions. Once you have a list of surgeons and their phone numbers, call the clinics and discuss your situation. Make appointments with the ones that seem promising. When you meet with surgeons in person, with your questions in hand, you should get a gut feeling about who will be the right person for you.

Here is a link that may help you:

How To Choose A Surgeon

BigGene's suggestion about the Mayo Clinic is an excellent one. If you could get there, that would be a good place to start. I checked out the orthopedic department and found these doctors as possibilities for you:

Dr. Michael Taunton (his bio sounded the best to me for your case)
Dr. Robert Trousdale
Dr. Tad Mabry
Dr. David Lewallen
Dr. Daniel Berry

All of these surgeons deal with revisions.

Please let me know if I can help you find a surgeon. I'll do what I can to assist you in getting a list of doctors to talk with.
 
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Gabby2011

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AMAZING! I am going to research them today, gather their phone numbers and make some calls. A big light bulb went off when you suggested Mayo.... I guess that's my Oprah Ah-Ha moment!

You guys are so great! I can't wait until I can be so helpful to others!
 
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Gabby2011

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I have looked into the Ortopedic department at Mayo. Why I never thought about going there I don't know. My mom says you guys are brilliant and my husband agrees that this is what I should do.

Hopefully on Monday I will have more information and an appointment. Rochester is only about 2 hours away and for a good result - I'll do it!
 

Jamie

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Excellent plan. You're on your way to better days!!!
 

Jamie

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Gabby, I've since done a little more research and it may be that Dr. Taunton leans a little more toward hips than knees. So be sure and ask a lot of questions when you talk to staff for each of the doctors.
 

RestAssured

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Good luck Gabby and keep us informed! I was willing to drive to the Mayo clinic in Minnesota if I did not get the answers I was looking for in Dallas!
 
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Gabby2011

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Well, I talked to Mayo today. My request for an appointment is in for review. The MD's will look at my situation, decide if they think they can help me and if they can, recommend the physicians who can help me best. I should hear from them by mail in 1-2 weeks.
 

RestAssured

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Way to go Gabby! I am so proud of you! Hopefully they will take care of you and you can get some much needed relief!:biggrin:
 

BigGene

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Great decision! All roads now lead in a new and better direction.
 
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