Total knee replacement

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I suffer from depression and am due this op in a month.at the orthopaedic hospital. Will I be mentally. Able to cope post op. .live on my own but may be able to stay with my mother whose house has better furniture, less scary stairs to encourage movement around the house, post op exercises .

I have slim legs with a long scar on shin bone from the pin and plate in 1978 after car knocked me in the air . . Nerves and still damaged .

My left leg cannot straighten , is shorter ,in bad weather I limp. Will I be able to straighten my leg if it heals up? Local hospital said no, orthopedic hospital said yes I would ! I am freaked out

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  • Posted

    Re whether you are able to straighten your leg, it may be down to whether you are able to do the exercises well . .or it may be that there is some impediment. I would tend to think that the orthopaedic hospital would know best about that. . . depression, unfortunately, does seem to occur after the operation in many cases, so perhaps best to talk to the doctor who attends to you for this to see what he suggests in terms of medication etc. . and if possible, and it's feasible, staying with your mother would  certainly be a good idea to begin with. regarding preparation, try to work on your upper body before the op . .using crutches is hard work and you need some muscle!  Get an over the toilet seat to raise the height. .this is one of the best things to help in  managing after the op.  Ready cooked meals in the freezer. .depends on how much your mother can do!  A cross body bag for carring small items like tablets, books, etc from one place to the other while using crutches.  Easy to put on shoes, velcro perhaps? a little larger than usual to cope with swelling, and some very, very soft trousers (not wool), preferably fairly loose and pull on . . .HYou don't want to have to take your trousers off every time you massage your knee, or apply ice etc. . .OH and of course ice bags, or an ice machine. . . some good pain killers!  Your sense of humour. . . and everything should be good!  Sorry to hear you have had such bad luck with your legs in the past. . let's hope this op can make things better.

     

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  • Posted

    hi yasmin

    sorry to hear all you are going through...i havent had a knee replacement, only an arthroscopy which as a result i now have nerve damage and am in full leg orthotic and crutches. this is nothing to do with your op but just wanted to send some words of support to your emotional wellbeing. i had to move back in with my parents and lost my job through my leg....so i know how you are feeling. any health condition can be so mentally debilitating as well as physical...so i wish you all the best...and theres some great advice on this forum  and some knowledgable people whoshould be able to help with your questions

    are you in uk?

    helen x

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  • Posted

    meant to ask, which orth hospital are you going to?

    h x

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    • Posted

      Hi Helen !

      Thanks for your kind reply ! About 4 years ago , gp sent me to be assessed for keyhole surgery on the arthritic knee..found there was not enough space on weight bearing, said it would cause more problems , so I fully empathise with what has happened to you. Gp said leave my knee alone. The nerve damage must be very unpleasant for you ! The original pain from the pin and plate op was worse than childbirth. .hence my apprehension. However , a kindky new gp referred me to the royal orthopedic hospital in Stanmore , which is where I'm to be admitted ! I do know that when I'm on top of things I do tend to look after myself with things like raw ginger , fenugreek . For pain I've been advised to deep breathe and massage knee with lavender oil. I'm so sorry to hear that you lost your job..I can't stand,I wear orthotics in my trainers.

      My depression has made me more anxious than ever ..thanks for your encouragement, Helen xx

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    • Posted

      hi again

      well...onething i can tell you is that stanmore are fantastic!!! i was living down south wen i had my op 3 years ago...had the op at southlands in worthing...but after the op wen the trouble startedi was referred to specialists at both stanmore and the rnoh in london, the other site in centre of london. they are really great at both those places....i had to move back in with my folks after losing my job etc and they are here in north wales....seen tons of consultants in wales,,..and am seeing specialists at orth hospital in gobowen, oswestry who are amazing. going there friday for a new full leg orthotic..

      but as i say , stanmore are fab.....even though its a strange hospital....in its own grounds and parking is a bit weird...as the whole complex is huge. do you have far to travel to get tthere?

      depression is a cruel illness....if you ever want to vent or need to talk...get back on this forum...i will always get back to you.

      theres a very wise man who frequents these forums, a certain chico marx...and he sent me a brilliant  line in an email which i am sure he wouldnt mind me quoting

      "Things like this will absolutely rob you of your very soul if you let them...don't let them. "

      try to keep strong., easy to say i know...but hang on in there...and you know where i am,...stay in touch

      helen xx

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    • Posted

      I would really seek something more effective than deep breathing for the pain control.  I imagine you have been taking tablets for pain control with your history of accidents etc. but this operaton is very difficult to recover from unless you get the pain under control, and can do the exercies.  And of course, no massaging until the wound is closed . . .at least not on or near where the stitches are.  

       

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    • Posted

      Of course , you're absolutely right , Martinavelo! .I meant deep breathing on a daily basis now ! I know I will need serious painkillers based on how the pin and plate was in 19 78! Serious pain relief in order to walk and do the physio exercises. .yes the massage must also come later. I will also try aloe vera gel and maybe bio oil ?

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    • Posted

      Helen thank you ..I will reply properly later .I've been helping my mother in Neasden which is nearer to Stanmore than where I live in Camden ! I want to hear more about what went wrong with your op! At least you do live in a beautiful country..the more they construct more buildings in central . London , build more railways..we've hs2 on the way. .the more I wish I could run away ! Xx

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  • Posted

    Hi, I suggest you get professional advice from your consultant if possible - you could always ring his secretary up and have a word with her/ write a letter with all your fears and why your apprehensive, even speak to your GP. If your not happy to have the OP well you could defer it until you feel you are ready for it. No one can actually give you the answer you want on here, but can only give their experiences.

    Good Luck & Best Wishes 

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  • Posted

    Hi Yasmin,

    You'll be in excellent hands in the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital. There are renowned. I would rather think they, as the experts, would know better about the prognosis for your leg.

    As for the depression, have a word with your doctor. They should be able to set something up for you. Also if you stay with your Mother at least you will have someone to talk things out with.

    I won't kid you, this is not necessarily an easy recovery from TKR. I would also think you will have to work hard on your exercises to combat the long standing problems you've had with your leg. Maybe start Physio or training to get those leg muscles as strong as you can before the op.

    But, hey, there are a lot of people who sail through this & recover quickly.

    Do your research, know your enemy, so to speak. Forewarned is forearmed as they say.

    You will beat this!

    Just remember, we are all here & willing to 'talk' too. Many people here can give you grade 'A' advice on surviving TKR.

    Perhaps go back over Chico Marx's posts, he is THE man on here. Also Oldfatguy, so much experience. They can give you insight into this op.

    Good luck.

    I hope it all turns out right for you.

    Take care

    Marilyn

    XX

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    • Posted

      Thank you so much Marilyn ! I know I'm fortunate to be in the best hands at Stanmore ..miles away from home , but nearer to my mother's in Neasden ! Yes you're right ..the surgeon who saw me said push on through the pain to do the exercises afterward ..so I know from previous experience when my ankle was so huge after trying to fix the broken leg , that I could not move it to stretch the tendon and over the years developed scar tissue and then arthritis. Surgeon said the bakers cyst will go..I'll be able to straighten my leg and it's the only option for me..

      I wonder why our hospitals do not do the visionaire more commonly . It is a half hour op and faster recovery ..less interference with the tibia bone marrow and no knocking out ..an epidural instead to numb the legs ..the technique is British ! And the knee is made to measure !

      Yes having my mother to speak to and negotiating less scary stairs as well as being in quieter surroundings ..I will even have to borrow clothes !all my trousers are skinny fit to support my knee..thanks again . I am comforted by everyone's input xx

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    • Posted

      Hello again Yasmin, I expect the reason our hospitals don't use the Visionaire is down to money. It probably saves in the long term but I should think the initial costs are quite high. Just read the blurb & does sound impressive, but you know what it's like here, if not NICE approved it won't happen. Also whilst there is a cheaper solution the NHS will generally use that.

      I think we are very fortunate to have new knees courtesy of NHS. TBH I have been happy with my new knee & hope to go back on the waiting list in June for the left knee to be done.

      I hope everything goes well for you. Enjoy a bit of pampering by your Mum after the op.

      Keep in touch.

      Marilyn

      XX

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