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  • OT: knee replacement

    My wife is a candidate for a knee replacement, has anyone had this done? The doctor talked about a partial replacement, sort of just capping the ends, not a total knee replacement. Any experiences, good or bad, what is the recovery like? Was it worth it?

  • #2
    My mom had both knees done when she was 68. She always claimed that it was the best thing she had ever done.---she's 101 now.
    Brian Rupnow
    Design engineer
    Barrie, Ontario, Canada

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    • #3
      Works great for a lot of people. My wife had a different experience... She's allergic to nickle, and the mfg didn't mention nickel in the literature (a 'cobalt' knee). Well, it hasn't gone so well for her and upon checking with the mfg after the fact, the doc found out the alloy is 5% nickel. Other than things like that, if you get a doc that does a bunch of 'em it should be fine.
      Southwest Utah

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      • #4
        I am 75. I had my first total anthroscopy on may 25th and the second on Sept 7th. They call it total knee replacement but it is really cutting the end off the bones and cementing metal ends on with a piece of plastic where the cartilage was. After 3 months the first is quite strong and able to support the 2nd one. The 2nd did not go as well. More pain and my foot is half asleep. I'm hoping it will wake up soon as it is still early in the recovery. Worst part for me is physical therapy. You have to keep up with the exercises to regain full range of motion. I would still go through all this for the alternative was bone on bone constant pain and nearly complete loss of mobility. Good luck if she decides to go forward with it.

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        • #5
          Had my left knee done a year ago June at 72.
          Full replacement, done with "robotics"...make of that what you will but from the knee down my leg is a couple degrees off.
          I went into it with strong legs and that helped a lot but, I wasn't able to walk as much as I should have due to the other knee being bad.
          Result is my leg swells occasionally and is discolored from the iron in my blood pooling in the lower leg.
          The area around the knee stills gets stiff. I can't kneel on it, but that bone on bone pain is gone.
          PT was OK and I'm still doing the exercises to stay flexible.

          If she is a candidate for a partial that's good!
          I was walking the night of the surgery with full replacement and home the next day doing mild PT and stretching.
          Good luck!

          Len

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          • #6
            I suffered for 16 months with a bad right knee from too many years of kick starting a high compression magneto fired Sportster.

            One day at the refinery a strainer coked up and, knowing it needed two people to prepare for cleaning, I got off my duff to help the unit operator get it ready. As I made a right turn past a permit desk, I went one way and my right knee went the other. I managed to pull myself together, go out to help with the job and get my sorry A$$ to the gate at shifts end. I attracted the attention of one snitch and got a call from HR the following morning that my badge was de-activated. 2 MRIs and 7 weeks later I got a “STRYKER Triathlon” right knee.

            When I was prepared for surgery they gave me a “nerve block” and said it would last 24 hours. 23 hours later the PT had me up walking 140 steps in the hall and back to bed. Then the nerve block wore off. I have had kidney stones 6 times and the knee pain was every bit as insane as the stones. I hit the buzzer and the TV screen blinked asking my pain level 1-10. I put 10 as a response and a nurse was soon there with an injection of Toradol. She asked why I was giggling if I was in so much pain and I told her I was too proud to scream.

            100% pay attention to your medication schedule and then your PT. I over did it and hurt myself.

            When I went back to work, 4 months later, my right leg was 3/8 longer than my left ,I was walking funny but I had zero issues running up the 80 steps to a reactor deck or multiple ladders to a furnace deck.

            6 yrs later, I’m retired 2 years, still doing fine and both my bikes are electric start.

            Know what knee they’re putting in and make sure your surgeon has a good reputation.

            Best of luck to you and the Mrs.
            Illigitimi non Carborundum 😎
            9X49 Birmingham Mill, Reid Model 2C Grinder, 13x40 ENCO GH Lathe, 6X18 Craftsman lathe, Sherline CNC mill, Eastwood TIG200 AC/DC and lots of stuff from 30+ years in the trade and 15.5 in refinery unit operations. Now retired. El Paso, TX

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            • #7
              I read the title, thought it referred to a milling machine!

              Ian
              All of the gear, no idea...

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              • #8
                I had a total knee replacement 15 years ago. Best thing I've ever done. The techniques have improved considerably since I had the surgery. They don't cut through as much of the muscle tissue as they used to, so recovery is faster. If the PT and medications are followed rigorously, the results are usually good. My knee was painful for about 6 weeks. About a year after the operation I was flying home from Orlando and couldn't figure out why the metal detector was going off

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                • #9
                  Last summer I had my right hip replaced, then 10 weeks later my left knee. I injured the knee about 24 years ago, but the hip (and other joints) had badly deteriorated due to osteoarthritis to the point where I couldn't walk more than about 100 yards at a time. Kept telling myself I didn't have the time to get it fixed. Stupid.

                  Before my hip replacement I was doing heavy (Russian Army) kettlebell workouts, with my doctor's ok ("why not use it up completely, I'm replacing it"). I was up walking and climbing stairs 45 minutes after I got to the recovery room, and was back home 5-1/2 hours after leaving. Took pain meds for 3 days, was driving in a week, did PT religiously for 6 weeks, was able to get back to the heavy kettlebell stuff about 2 weeks before my knee surgery.

                  Knee surgery was similar in that I was up walking as soon as the minimal nerve block wore off, was back home in about 7 hours after leaving. Recovery was definitely more difficult but still not terrible. Pain meds for about a week, driving in 10 days, PT for 6 weeks, back on the kettlebells in about 10 weeks.

                  The other knee and hip will eventually need replacement, but the plan is to put that off 4-5 years. With the two new parts I have, I am in very little pain and can stand and walk for hours again.

                  Take the pain meds as directed and never let the pain get ahead of the meds. Do the PT - all the PT but not more - as directed. Yes, it'll hurt, but not as much as the knee your wife has now.
                  SE MI, USA

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Tim The Grim View Post
                    I suffered for 16 months with a bad right knee from too many years of kick starting a high compression magneto fired Sportster..
                    Ha!
                    '66 stroker with a Tillotson.
                    Had to keep a toothpick handy to tickle the diaphragm.
                    Wouldn't even think of anything without electric leg now!
                    Len

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                    • #11
                      I had a total knee replacement on my left knee 3 years ago and a partial on the right just before the 2020 lockdown. If I hadn't had them done, I would have required a zimmer frame at least by now. The full knee bends 118 degrees from straight and the partial 130 degrees. The side affects for me are some aching when in bed and occasional sensitivity and itching between the knee and ankle on both legs, which responds quickly to skin cream for dermatitus. The benifits hugely outweigh the side affects, and I would recommend having the work done as soon as possible. I can walk without pain, and that feels great after years with pain.

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                      • #12
                        Pay the extra for a Bridgeport and not one from a clone.
                        The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

                        Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

                        Southwestern Ontario. Canada

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                        • #13
                          I'm late to this party, but let me add something important: After having knee-replacement surgery TAKE THE STOOL SOFTENER!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by John Garner View Post
                            I'm late to this party, but let me add something important: After having knee-replacement surgery TAKE THE STOOL SOFTENER!
                            Not just for knee surgery. Commonly prescribed pain killers like morphine and oxycodone slow the bowels to a crawl. Only one that worked for me was an over-the-counter Polyethylene Glycol. Everything else i was prescribed just made matters worse.

                            As for the knee surgery itself, from everyone I've know that's had the procedure they all curse themselves for not ending their suffering and doing the procedure sooner. Also, they all stressed the importance of doing ALL the physical therapy. It's the most important part of the whole procedure. If the therapy is delayed the knee will not heal properly.

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                            • #15
                              I have been postponing knee surgery because I had a minor stroke January 2020, Been getting Synvisc injections but the generic ones did not work and they insisted were the same. Found a new doctor and the last "real" injection with Synvisc worked like a charm. They last from 6 months to a year, gel like stuff that lubes the joint.
                              Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician - Fine Line Automation CNC 4x4 Router

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