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Luluk

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I had an xray today of the unoperated knee and it shows severe arthritis and it is ready right now for TKR. Oh no, how do I deal with getting another one?

The PA says I can stall by trying an offloader knee brace or injections. Has anyone had effective relief of severe arthritis with these measures? Honestly I don't see a lot of point in stalling the inevitable for very long.
 

Mom2Lucy

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Cortisone injections and synvisc have brought relief to me. I get cortisone every three months, but have found over time that it’s becoming less effective. But it does help me. I have heard and read of people finding no relief, seems maybe the body’s response varies by individual.
 

maximummy

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Hello... I had the first TKR four years ago and said I would rather die than have the other knee done.
Like you, the time came and I had number two done on October 29th, 2018.
I have to tell you, it has been a much less awful experience this time. Having the knowledge of what to expect, how to look after yourself, ASK for decent painkillers and for me, ditch the physios who undermine your confidence etc, has made me take it all in my stride.
I knew the nights would be awful and i just went with it. I asked for stronger painkillers (OxyCodone) and didn’t struggle with something weaker. I M now coming off that and take either Co-Codamol or sometimes, just Paracetamol. I make sure I get adequate rest and I still ice the knee, though less than previously. I have had the odd day of feeling low and occasionally tearful, but I know this is normal and I know it passes.
Just be kind to yourself and set yourself up to accept all help offered.
Good luck.
 

Jaycey

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Honestly i dont see a lot of point in stalling the inevitable for very long.
I am afraid I agree with you! Injections or a brace is not going to fix anything and may add to your pain. Some people see results with injections but plenty see nothing and then must wait for months for surgery (the medication must be out of your system before any surgery).

Find yourself a surgeon you trust and get that knee replaced. Life is too short to limp through.
 

Celle

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Hello @Luluk
I have moved your thread from the Knee Replacement Recovery Area to the Knee Replacement Pre-Op Area, since its topic is discussing a future knee replacement.

I agree with Jaycey. Since your knee needs replacing, go ahead and find a surgeon who will do it. If you can avoid it, don't waste time stalling. It won't get any better than it is now, so get it fixed.
 

JDinCT

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I've had cortisone shots and an unloader brace. For me, they were all very temporary measures and in the end not worth the time nor money spent on them. The unloader brace alone was $1800... it was a custom DonJoy brace. I received it in October 2018 and will hopefully not need it after my TKR in March 2019.... but it did not provide me with $300/month level of relief....

Unfortunately an arthritic knee is NOT like fine wine.... it does NOT get better with age... :sigh:
 
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Luluk

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Thank you all so much! I feel better reading your comments!
 

Josephine

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Get it done, my dear! You'll have all of us to cheer you on and make sure you have a good recovery.

(PS that PA doesn't know what s/he is talking about!)
 

SusieShoes

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You're delaying the inevitable. I too got some relief from Synvisc injections and cortisone, but over time they stopped working. You might buy yourself a bit of time, but in the end only replacing the knee will get rid of the pain and disability. It's a matter of when you choose to pull the ripcord!
 
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Luluk

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Thank you all so much. I really appreciate your feedback and words of camardie and support. Its amazing what difference there is on this subject between someone who has actually been there...and pa’s and pt’s!
 

FCBayern

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Luluk,

I had both cortisone injections and an unloader brace. I had some success with both but they are just a stop gap measure. For myself my knee issue stems from injury so only one is bad, and being less than 60 years old I was looking to delay as long as I could. The brace gave relief, often if I wore it for 3-4 hours I got relief for the rest of the day, but it's very uncomfortable to wear. If I were you I would go for the replacement, mine happens next Thursday.
 
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I've had an unloader brace since late 2013. I found it to be a life saver during the time I couldn't entertain having another TKR. They're good for about an hour and a half during which you can pretty much do anything. Cortisone shots varied in the length of time they worked for me, from 3 months to 9 months. About a year and a half ago, they stopped working and I've been using a cane ever since.

But just like everyone else has said, all you're doing with a brace and cortisone shots is delaying the inevitable. I had reasons to delay, but I don't anymore.

As soon as my reasons to delay went away, I scheduled an appointment to start the ball rolling on a TKR.
 

maryo52

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I've yet to meet someone who liked their unloader brace. I think if the practitioners who order them had to wear one for even a day, they'd stop thinking it was a good idea. I did have a cortisone shots along the way and those helped.
 
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I've yet to meet someone who liked their unloader brace. I think if the practitioners who order them had to wear one for even a day, they'd stop thinking it was a good idea.
I think "liked" is too strong a word. You're right about that. But did they serve a purpose? Yes, most definitely. Now if the manufacturers could figure out a way for them to stay in the place you put them when you first put it on, they might have something. They slide, just like every $12 sleeve I ever bought at the drugstore. Only unloaders cost $1200.
 

maryo52

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I found that a hinged brace accomplished the same thing. I bought one off the internet. It had an adjustment screw so you could get the exact right angle of valgus or varus. And it stayed in place and was fairly comfortable. I wore that for 6 years after my original TKR left me in too much valgus.
 

FCBayern

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I've yet to meet someone who liked their unloader brace. I think if the practitioners who order them had to wear one for even a day, they'd stop thinking it was a good idea. I did have a cortisone shots along the way and those helped.
Although uncomfortable at times I could not have waited as long as I did for my TKR without the brace. While it is only a stop gap measure I had reasons to delay my TKR and the unloader brace was a key component in being able to.
 

HoneyB

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I had my second TKR 3.5 months after my first. Cortisone helped me just a little. Synvisc did nothing for me. I wish I'd had both knees replaced two years earlier instead of hobbling around and missing out on life's activities.
 

catkin69

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I have a love hate relationship with my unloader brace. I have had it since September and it definitely stops the horrible bone grinding. I had problems to start with slipping and blisters but now always wear it over something which has improved things. There is absolutely no way I would get through a 12 hour nursing shift with out it but definitely won’t be sad to see the back of it. Synvisc helped for a month probably and I had no benefit from steroid shot. Not everything works for everyone but it’s definitely worth trying other options before a replacement.
 

Elad1002

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Synvisc did nothing for me. I wish I'd had both knees replaced two years earlier instead of hobbling around and missing out on life's activities.
Synvisc did nothing for me 4 years ago. Cortisone on the other hand, helped me get through until this past fall when it didnt work. I had an injection of Zilretta, the long acting cortisone shot. It was supposed to give me 6-9 mos of relief It instead gave me 6 days. I tried lots of natural supplements including Collagen, Boswelia, Turmeric. Omega 3, etc. Everything helped a little, still take omega 3 for heart health. As the bone on bone grinding gets worse, nothing helped me anymore. A brace would have been my only option, but due to my chubby legs, it would slip off too easily. I fought this surgery but I too felt like I was missing out on life, was on the verge of quitting work. Truth is, I like my job, like working. Every day since surgery I have to counter negative thoughts that something may go wrong and it is a mental struggle, I have an anxiety disorder. I always appreciate posts like yours, that provide some reassurance to my anxious brain. Thank you!
 

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