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Qualifications for BTKR??

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phoggie

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Okay all of you wise people. What are the qualifications for having both of your knees done at the same time? When I mentioned this to my OS because they both need to go....he would not even consider doing that.
Sure would save having to go through it twice...and after this THR, I am not looking forward to having the knees done....but I know it is coming.
Are you hurting as much as I am today?....this weather has to get better soon....I need sunshine!
 

Jamie

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phoggie....you're in Junction City and I'm in Kansas City....and the weather has been killing my knee (6 weeks out from surgery) since yesterday. I sure hope things clear up soon, but the forecast is for a lousy weekend. I'm sooooooo tired of winter!!!
 

JenniferG

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Other knee would not be able enough to carry you through healing & rehab of operated on knee. Post surgery it would be asking it to do too much.
 

Josephine

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Well, truth to tell, phoggie, it has little or nothing to do with the patient. It's mostly to do with what the surgeon thinks of it! Depends upon who he trained with - did THAT surgeon do bilats? Depends if he's had a bad experience, that might make him reluctant to do them.

Then there is the question of stamina. A unilateral takes about 1-2 hours to do. Very much depends upon the surgeon again. I have worked with surgeons that would do a THR in 45 mins and others that took 2½ hrs or more. Obviously the first chap was more inclined to do bilats as they would take him around 1½-2 hrs to do. But a chap who takes 2-2½hrs minimum - that's going to be a 4-5hr marathon and THOSE are the ones who are reluctant to do them. Nothing to do with the patient but all to do with their reluctance to embark on such a mammoth procedure both for the patient's well being and their own. Doing hip and knee replacements is physically very demanding.
 

Turtlelady53

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Phoggie,
I had the same question. I have two bad knees, but the left is much worse than the right; however, the right seems to be deteriorating at a fast pace. I made an appointment with my OS and told him my quality of life was down the toilet and I wanted new knees--no more shots, no more meniscus repairs, no more shaving the bones, no more anything but new knees, as long as my insurance would cooperate. I too do NOT want to go through this twice and am willing to bite the bullet and get it over with. At first he suggested doing one this summer and one next, but I was very firm. After a new x-ray determined that there was significantly more damage since last pictures, he agreed as long as that's what I wanted. At a recent seminar at the hospital, the nurse practitioner said that it really is a doctor's preference. Some will, however, take into consideration the patient's overall health, strength, and mental outlook. So, I'm scheduled for June. I am very much looking forward to an end result and will be relying heavily on this forum for some encouragement to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Good luck to you. I'd suggest perhaps acquiring a 2nd opinion.
 

referee54

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I had a Bilateral TKR---my ortho said, "No problem---but he added that I am 53, in pretty darn good health, and have really stgrong quads and hams. I believe age and physical health are primary facotrs...rehab for both was challnging, but I didn;t want to have one done, rehab, and face the ordeal again. It worked out well for me.

Tim C.
 

JenniferG

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I had a Bilateral TKR---have really stgrong quads and hams.

Tim C.
i did PT before surgery to strengthen things. I'm a firm believer that makes a huge difference especially in the case of Bi-Laterals.
 

Rowdy66

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Well in two weeks I will be having both knees done and my surgeon didn't seem to think it was such a big deal. I think Josephine is absolutely right on with her answer. I think it is up to the surgeon. I am supposed to be going to the best in southern Az and I sure do like him. Have heard nothing but good things about him. No one seems to find it all that unusual that I am having both knees done at the same time, both are equally bad and to think I would have one done and wait to heal and then have the other one done in six months and again have to go through the whole process again is just too much for me. I have been in just terrible pain for the last two years almost and would have had both done sooner but needed to lose weight and was convinced I could even though I am pretty much down for the count because of the pain. I don't regret putting it off as I have lost about 70 pounds and I think it will make a big difference for me and my new knees in general. I think I was sort of hoping that if I lost weight I would lose the pain without having to go through the surgery but that was a pipe dream. Still I am glad I gave myself the chance to lose the weight as most of it I had put on after I reached my 50's, prior to that I was thin. Anyway if I were you I would ask the surgeon why he won't do both. Is the same surgeon doing your hips and your knees? Rowdy
 

Josephine

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Is the same surgeon doing your hips and your knees? Rowdy
Hmm ... surgeon that does both hips AND knees .... IM(VH)O would be a bit like getting your plumber to fix a light fitting or vice versa!
 

JenniferG

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I think alot of OS do both hips and knees. Maybe it is more common here in the US. I think the problem is if you get a guy who does mostly shoulders to do your knees or hip.

.... IM(VH)O
Jo, what does this mean?
 

beachcomber

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I think it is In My (Very Humble) Opinion
 

Rowdy66

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The reason I asked if the same OS was doing both knees and hips was something someone else might have posted previously that made me think that the same surgeon was doing both hips and knees. Personally I would not go to a doctor who didn't concentrate on one or the other. The doctors I have seen about my knees only specailize in one procedure. As a matter of fact the surgeon who did my arthoscopy last year does do anything else, he does do any other joint and he doesn't do replacements, he referred me to the OS I am going to have do my knees and he only does KR's. I agree with Josephine that it would like mixing apples and oranges. But to each his own. I just think concentrating on one and getting really good would be better that switching around from one joint to the next. Of course if I went to someone who did everything I would end up with elbows in my knees and so forth, lol. Rowdy
 

Jamie

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Of course if I went to someone who did everything I would end up with elbows in my knees and so forth, lol. Rowdy
LOL, Rowdy!!! Now THAT would be pretty funny. Well.....maybe not to the person who ended up with elbows where knees should be, but the mental picture certainly made me laugh. Guess they'd be very wealthy from the lawsuit, though.
 

northman22

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I had both knees done in Feb. and I agree with what's been said. It has to do with the surgeon, and some your general health for the extended surgery. My doc almost insisted on doing both. It took about 1.5 hours for the whole thing. He does hips & knees and did 8 kness the day of my surgery.

It is more difficult in the beginning. I was watching other patients racing around the hospital ward and I was barely able to get out of my room the first couple of days. I ended up staying 5 days and was the last patient there. But now, 8 weeks out I'm really glad I did it, both fiancially and mentally. I'm glad it's done! I'm quite a bit overweight too, but all in all have a healthy heart and work outdoors so my strength is pretty good.

Good luck on whatever path you choose.

Steve
 

Turtlelady53

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Thanks Steve for that testimonial. I keep getting cold feet about having BTKR in June, and I realize it's going to be a tough recovery at first, but I just don't want to go through this twice. My OS didn't insist on it, but he gently suggested doing one this summer and one next. I not-so-gently suggested we get it all over with at once and convinced him I'm a tough ole cookie, so he agreed. Looks like I'll have great company to recover with this summer with the forum folks.
 
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