TKR Two TKRs and a broken kneecap - on the mend now!

Hi Fiona,
I am sorry that I'm just catching up here now. It's currently late evening in the UK with the time difference and you may not be back on the forum until tomorrow. As, sistersinhim, mentioned, we're only allowed one thread in recovery so I will change the title of this thread for as long as you like to hopefully attract the attention you're seeking on the topic of a broken kneecap. If you'd rather try something else please let us know and we'll do our best to accommodate.
I hope your weekend is a pleasant one.
@FionaW. I am so sorry to hear of your patella fracture. This is so tough without extras, do you do anything the
‘easy way”? Sorry, I know this situation was not a choice, we feel out of control and vulnerable enough without extra delaying, painful, unexpected events occurring. My prayers are for you and healing. Blessings
OK @Layla , that may work. Though I t’s a bit frustrating to have to muddle up my own recovery story with questions and other people’s experiences, and to have to change titles back and forth - I sincerely hope this one problem won’t define my whole recovery!
I am truly sorry, Fiona. Try to look at it this way, sadly this is a part of your recovery story. While it's a complication and not the norm, you don't realize how many may be inspired by what they read here on your thread, encouraged by your bravery, even though this isn't your choice, and you will be blessed through the loving encouragement and support you receive which you may look back on some day as bittersweet. I am praying for your comfort and that you'll soon meet the goals necessary to be released for home. We're here for you always, day or night so please come by whenever you're in need of encouragement or someone to chat with. We'll be here watching for you because we care.
Sending a hug. :console2:
Thanks @Layla . Of course it’s *part* of my story. But think of it this way: if you want to hear from other people, as I do - especially if you want to hear about quite a rare experience - you don’t sit in your own living room hoping that the right people will come to you. Rather, you go out to more public places, and ask around. Our recovery threads are like our own living rooms, whereas the main forum is where you are much more likely to find a range of other people.

But not to worry: I’ll pop over to a knee replacement forum on Facebook and ask there. I’ll come back and update here when I next have any news. :flwrysmile:
@FionaW, your thread title has been changed to reflect your broken kneecap. Did you notice this? Layla changed it for you. What else would you like it changed to?

Anyone else had a broken kneecap after TKR?​

@FionaW I’m so sorry to read of your complication, but very pleased to see that you quickly hooked up with a couple of members who either have been through a similar experience or at least understand your feelings about the situation you are in at present. I think you’ll find that the change in thread title for now along with the active correspondence back and forth from other members will help you get the support and information you are looking for. Every time someone posts, your thread moves up to first place on the main index page for knee recovery patients. So, if you post a daily update to let your followers know how you’re doing, you’ll likely see more responses.

Layla made a good point about the value of your entire recovery experience in one place. Once you have gotten through this challenging period, it will be very helpful for people to see that a person can get there. The conversations and information passed from other members will be a critical part of reassurance for them, just as it is for you. And they’ll be able to easily see the progress with this situation as part of an overall recovery. I know you have no desire to be part of the club of BoneSmarties that have unusual complications. But, stories like yours are exactly why our forum can be so helpful for those of our members with challenges. It’s easy to feel alone in a situation that few relate to and being able to connect with others is so important.

We are here for you. If you feel you aren’t getting the support you need, we can consider trying something different. Just let us know with a post here if that happens. In the meantime, I hope you are able to continue the conversations with DogTiredKnees and others who can relate to what you’re going through. Sending ((((HUGS))) and hopes that you are able to go home from the hospital soon. While it’s good they aren’t trying to rush you out of there before you’re ready, it’s always more comfortable to be back home. Do you have a good support network at home to help out?
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Thinking of you. I take it you have tried putting patella fracture into the search box?
I think #Neecey has something similar when I tried it just now.
I do hope the thread title change elicits the response you’re hoping for.
You have many rooting for you here so hopefully you will check in often to read messages of encouragement and support. May this coming week find you resting in the comfort of home and feeling a little less vulnerable, alone and fearful. :prayer: I hope your right knee is doing well on this two month anniversary since your surgery.
Hugs, Fiona.
Hello. I had my RTKR 8 weeks ago and my LTKR 7 days ago. Unfortunately, a few hours later, as I got out of bed for the first time, my right kneecap ‘exploded’: I felt excruciating pain as a fragment where the tendons were attached suddenly snapped off - an avulsion fracture.

This is a serious complication. I’ll explain more if anyone is interested, but first, I just wondered if anyone else has had this experience? I’m feeling very alone, vulnerable and worried, as well as struggling a lot with the practicalities, and I’d appreciate hearing from anyone who’s been through anything similar…
Thanks in advance. :)
I was just past 1 year with my youngest knee and started getting sharp pain while moving some boxes up and down two steps in and out of the garage. I figured I’d just overdone it but the pain persisted. Went to the surgeon after maybe 3 weeks. He X-ray’d it and said the top of my patella was fractured. To come back in a month if it still hurt…and don’t take stairs for a few weeks. I am still shaking my head at that based on what I’ve been reading. The notes about the visit claim he suggested I use a knee sleeve or immobilizer. Huh? Why wasn’t I sent off with the proper gadget vs needing to search the web for what to do…. I have a follow up on Friday because it still hurts…. :bored:
UPDATE: Day 11 LTKR and R patellar avulsion fracture; 9 weeks after RTKR.

I had a good chat with my (very experienced and respected) surgeon yesterday, to talk through what might have happened to cause my right kneecap to fracture on the day of my left knee replacement, and discuss my options and the implications…

He’s mortified. He said he’s carried out more than 2000 knee replacements, and this is the first broken kneecap he’s ever had. He can’t be certain why it happened, but he identified some possible contributing factors… The kneecap was in a very bad state: it had osteophytes growing behind it and it was about 6cm out of place, slipped down, as part of what was going on with my R severe valgus deformity. When he had shaved the osteophytes off it, he reinforced it with a ‘button’ - which is like a plastic press-on stud cemented to the back of the knee cap. So the front of the patella was/is my own bone, and the back is cemented plastic. The break has occurred pretty much at the edge of the plastic - the top bit where the ligaments attach has snapped off. He thinks this was due to a combination of the thinner, weakened bone and sudden force - basically me getting up after surgery and putting all my weight down that nonsurgical leg, perhaps also with extra pressure/restriction on the posterior cruciate ligament from the hard edge of the bed.

He said revision would be difficult and dangerous… Basically, the fact that the kneecap fractured proves that it’s very thin and fragile, so nothing further could be done to it other than removing it completely. This is not a good option now because removing fractured bones at an early stage - when the inside of your knee is still full of blood, swollen and bruised - means that there’s a high chance that fragments get missed and left behind, and so your risk of infection is really high. Removing the kneecap later is safer, but still not a good option. It’s better, my surgeon says, to brace now and see how the body repairs itself - it might mend better than surgery could ever achieve. So we have agreed to try this. If it doesn’t work, we’ll look again at other options.

Because it happened in hospital, I was braced almost straight away, and hardly moved it or put any weight on it unbraced. This means I haven’t caused any further damage to it, and it stands a reasonably good chance of healing naturally.

I had full extension and about 120° flexion before it happened, but of course it is hard to tell what my extension and flexion are like now, because of the brace. I could get my own leg up onto the bed unaided after a day or two, and hold it up in the air for a very, very short while after about a week, which my surgeon says makes him hopeful I will eventually achieve full function. He cleared me yesterday to do static quads and leg raises with the braced leg - I can’t, yet, but it will come…

The other brand new 11 day-old knee seems to be recovering okay, though it’s more painful than the first knee was, presumably because it’s doing so much more work. I’m having to do the rehab for my left knee ON my left knee - hooray for morphine!! I have hardly been able to think about how it is doing, because the broken kneecap has taken all my attention. It’s ironic that a knee that was replaced just 11 days ago is my ‘good’ knee!

I’m now medically well enough to go home, but I’m waiting for carers to be arranged, because my bedroom and bathroom are upstairs, and I’m going to have to live downstairs for a couple of months, so I’ll need help with emptying the commode, washing and so on … I can’t do anything that requires me to bend my knee or stand for more than a very few minutes. It’s going to be a long, tiresome summer…
My apologies, Fiona. That was an oversight on my part in confusing which knee cap fractured.
I do hope this method of treatment proves beneficial and no further procedures are necessary.
Safe travels home, if you haven't made the trek yet. Hopefully you'll feel more comfortable once you settle into your own space. Please stay in touch so we're able to follow your journey back to healthy and whole.
Sorry to hear how tough things are going to be. I am sure it is wise not to rush to further surgery but can't imagine having to use a 9 day baby knee as your 'good' knee. Just stay put until your care package is totally fixed. They can't rush to discharge you after what's happened. Keep posting and updating us- we are all thinking of you and hoping/ praying for the best possible outcome. You had good ROM before - so I would be reassured by what your surgeon says that nature can do a better job than surgery.
I am thinking that your kneecap will heal just fine. If it doesn't and has to be removed, that's no big deal. Both of my kneecaps were removed in the 90s due to birth defects. Though some weaker than knees with their caps, I'm walking just fine. I can still ride my bike and go hiking, my two favorite things to do!

We will continue to pray for your complete healing!
Thanks, @sistersinhim . It is very reassuring to hear that you can still go hiking without kneecaps. That gives me some hope that even if we end up in the ‘worst case scenario’, I am still likely to be able to do that. Like you, it’s one of my greatest pleasures and it’s been more than a year since I’ve been able to do it.

Thanks for your good wishes too, @EalingGran and @Layla. :flwrysmile:
Home at last! Me and Ruby-dog are very happy to be reunited!
(8w2d after RTKR; 13d after LTKR and R patellar avulsion fracture)


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