My Dr recommended CMC arthroplasty

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I am 42 yo and extremely active. I run 4 days a week and do all sorts of activities such as boating and fishing in the summer. I was diagnosed with Basilar Joint Arthritis in both hands about 5 years ago. I have managed it pretty well with injections and Diclofenac gel until about a year ago. The pain in my right hand (dominate hand) has gotten to the point that it is hampering my daily activities. I recently went to my Dr who stated that my right thumb joint is collapsing and that its pretty much bone on bone. He also stated that with how young I am that I eventually will not have any use of my right hand. He suggested CMC arthroplasty and with what I have been reading I'm getting a little freaked out. I do have a lot of help from my boyfriend and other family members but my concern is when I would be able to go back to work, drive and run again. I am an administrative assistant so I type pretty much all day but its not time sensitive. I love to run and it concerns me that I wont be able to exercise for quite some time. I'm worried about the surgery but even more worried about my quality of life if I don't get it. Any info would be helpful. 

Thanks in advance!!!

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  • Posted

    Don’t worry get it done, I am booked in for my third joint replacement next month.

    You can be awake, I prefer to sleep. I was splinted for about two weeks when the stitches were taken out and I was allowed to return to work. It’s then time to get busy with the physio to get movement back and the first weeks are critical. You will have a hand split made. I was allowed to drive after 4 weeks.

    I am now completely pain free which is heaven. Movement is limited but pain free is priceless 

    Remember that for every person who posts a disaster story there are hundreds and thousands of us with successful outcome 

    What is there to worry about, I had my first one done in my 40’s

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    • Posted

      I'm not really worried about the therapy afterward...I know it will be painful but worth it and I'm willing to do whatever it takes. What I am worried about is being out of work for 2 weeks and not able to drive for 4 weeks. Where I live we don't have public transportation and stuff like that. Would I be able to walk/run during my recovery...if so how soon after do you think? BTW thank you for your response!!!

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    • Posted

      You need to ask your surgeon these questions as he is the expert. Unless you are self employed your employer has to give you time off and sick pay because you will have a medical certificate. Of course you can walk, your arm will have to be kept raised to reduce the swelling. Running, well yes, but I would be careful as you don't want to jolt it. 

      Is there no one who can give you a lift? When I had mine done, several people in the office picked me up for a couple of weeks until I could drive. One guy went out of his way to collect me. People are always helpful in these situations. Remember that if the surgeon says no driving, your insurance will be invalid if you drive and in the UK that is 6points. 

      If you leave it too long you reduce the surgeons options and can end up in a much worse state for the rest of your life for the price of taking 2 weeks out. Is all that pain worth it? 

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  • Posted

    I think the fact that you're young and in good shape will help you to recover faster. You might also meet with a physical therapist so he/she can give you some stretches and exercises you can safely do after your surgery. This will keep you motivated and should help to make you feel better. Also I would be sure to get a second opinion because I think anyone looking surgery of any kind should get a second opinion just to be on the safe side. Good luck to you and I hope everything works out.

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    • Posted

      The physio is very intensive and critical for getting function back. There will be multiple physio  appointments and measurements will be taken to check your progress.

      I have never bothered to get a second opinion as I fully trust my surgeon as he has already tried all the non surgical options and it’s clear on the X-rays and mri that surgery is needed 

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