Leg length discrepancy

Posted , 7 users are following.

i had a TKR 3 weeks ago and the day after surgery they came into my room to start my PT with a walker. As soon as I hit the floor I noticed that my operated leg was longer than the other. I mentioned it to the therapist and they didn't seem concerned. Well to cut to the chase, I am 64 and have always been knock-kneed, and my

doctor decided to straighten my leg during the operation. So now my operated leg is over 1/2" to 3/8" longer than the other. my doctor never discussed That he was going to straighten my leg and now have to deal with rehab and the reality of 2 legs  that are different lengths. My hips hurt, my spine aches, I need shims in my shoes. I went to my surgeon and asked him why he never told me my legs would be different lengths and he said I will need to use ordhodics or get my other knee straightened in a few years. This is nuts. My other knee is just fine.  I am going to have to get another educated opinion on my options because I am in a real bind.

  Does anyone have a similar story?

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  • Posted

    I'm so sorry that this happened.  What a debacle!

    Were it me, I would get a second opinion and then head straight for an attorney.  That was not a minor decision the surgeon made without your knowledge or consent.  And the notion that it's no big deal for you to wear orthotics for the rest of your life or else have another surgery is outrageous.

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  • Posted

    Yes, I had a TKR in 2014 and I am bowlegged well when I had my knee fixed that leg is now straight and yes it seemed longer, when I would be asked how tall I am, I'd reply it depends on which leg I stand on...I'm not sure it was really any longer or if it was just taking time to get used to the new knee. well it took me awhile . but now all is well, ( Mine isn't as bad as yours ) so maybe its just gonna take some time to get used to it since your just 3 weeks out .

    Good luck

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  • Posted

    Hi Dan

    My story is just a normal tkr but surely they had no right to do what they have i wouldn't be seeing the surgeon again i would be seeking the advice of a lawyer how the hell can anyone tell you to have a perfecly good knee operated on this is definitely wrong good luck.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for you reply John.  I am definitely getting a second medical opinion after I get the operated leg back on track. Then, unfortunately, I may have to get a lawyer involved. I just shutter at the road that will take.

      Dan

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  • Posted

    Hi Dan .. this doesn't sound right at all.  You should've been told everything that can go wrong with having this operation... it's a huge operation and to think that you had it without even needing it is worse.  Sorry but sounds like you have a money hungry surgeon there sad 

    I would definitely be be looking into this further... do you remember what paperwork you signed prior to having the operation?  If you're like alot of us you just sign ... I'm very lucky I'm just 2wks post op with my 2nd knee and my surgeon thoroughly goes thru everything b4 I sign... but once again different story to yours as I was run over by a truck that totally ruined both knees!

    Carry on with your pt... get a second or 3rd opinion if needed and then if you need to see a lawyer.  Where I am in Australia it's very hard to sue as I said our surgeons etc... are so thorough that there's not really ever a chance of sueing.

    I wish you luck Dan and please keep us in the loop as to how things are panning out for you.... Cheers Tracey

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    • Posted

      Tracy,

        unfortunately, I have to concur.  It's going to be a tough deal to rectify all of what has happened. I honestly, have had the wind taken from my sails.Dan

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    • Posted

      Where ever you are in the world Dan there will be someone who can help you with this im not a believer in finding fault with any medical organisation but in your case this looks like major negligence i hope you can find a suitable outcome .
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    • Posted

      Oh Dan... I can just imagine how you must be feeling .. I think getting over the shock of all that's gone down will then make it a little bit of an easier road for you because once the shock of it all has gone no doubt some anger is definitely going to creep in and sometimes that's what we need to get the ball rolling.  Remember there's always someone here to listen or help with advice .. great place to come and get it off your chest as we're all I would say in a similiar boat .. but unfortunately your case is different to the rest of ours.

      Cheers Tracey

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  • Posted

    Hi Dan

    I had different situation . I asked the doctor if he could straighten my knocked knee in leg . He said yes that by fixing the knee it would straighten mostly anyway .my legs are a little off but not really noticeable . I for one am so happy with my straight leg .

    My question to your doctor would be if that happened because of the new knee ? My knee/ leg became knock kneed over the years from the knee getting so bad . My hip was hurting and all from being so misaligned .

    Hope this helps . I agree with others that I think you'll get used to the whole thing and hopefully love the new knee ! It's still so early for everything . Stay strong .

    Debbie

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  • Posted

    Give therapy a chance to do their thing and see if things settle in with muscle /tendon readjustment. With leg surgery there are so many variables that have to be worked through before the final results are known.

    I happen to be a guy that doesn't like lawyers as I feel some are ready to go for the throat when there isn't a valid reason. Legal battles take so much out of a person it had better be worth the drain and strain. Obviousily, if mistakes are things that create a less than desirable life then actions need to be taken.

    One of the biggest problems with medical lawsuits......trying to find a doctor who will testify against another no matter what they say privately in house.

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  • Posted

    I talked to my PT ("Physio," for some) this morning.  (My lasy PT visit!  Yay!)

    He said it's not unusual for a surgeon to do this because otherwise the new knee would be working with a leg that's not struturally sound, so areas where the artificial knee touches and/or is supposed to be connected to the real bone could be at weired angles that might cause the knee to come out of place or the connection to somehow be tenuous.  (Forgive my layman's description.)

    In other words, it would be like a carpenter connecting a doorframe to a warped stud.  The stress would weaken the hinges or connectors, eventually causing it do go off kilter.

    He said if it were a matter of a half inch or so, an orthotic would help, and it wouldn't be that big of a deal.  Anything greater and it could cause hip and back problems because of a faulty gait.  He said that another surgery would be in order in that case.

    But he say that not telling the patient beforehand sounded very unusual and bad practice.  Not that the patient would necessarily tell the surgeon to do anything differently, but the patient would give informed consent, which is very important in the medical world for all but urgent or unexpected situations. In your case, the surgeon probably knew he was going to straighten the leg going in, and so should have explained it to you.

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