Trying to stay intact!

Posted , 11 users are following.

My TKR is 12 days away now and I was told I that if there was a single break in the skin on that leg the op would be cancelled because of the infection risk. Even an insect bite would be a problem...

I have to say I never realised how often my legs had minor wounds... I'm generally quite outdoorsy and I'm permanently covered in bites, bramble scratches, nettle rash (which I always manage to scratch open) etc, or accidental scratches from playing with dogs and cats, or catching my leg on a fence whilst struggling to get my dodgy legs over a style...

i never even think about it, but now I feel like I have to wrap the leg in cotton wool to protect it these last few days... Just got me wondering... What aspect of your surgeries took you totally by surprise? What did you have have to think/worry about that you never even thought about before?

 

2 likes, 96 replies

Report / Delete

96 Replies

Next
  • Posted

    It has just happene t my friend, she had a simple burn on her hand and it was cancelled ...the risk of infection is huge and the consequences of that are horrific it's good they are being so careful.

    you will just have to be very careful don't walk the dogs in the bushes for a while don't climb fences etc, and be very careful if you shave your legs.

    sleep or there lack of it was the most surprising thing to me. 

    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      I'm not too worried about that cos I' m a rubbish sleeper anyway... Normally average about 4hrs most nights... So totally used to operating half awake... Which is why I like outdoors... Fresh air wakes me up!
      Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I had absolutely no prior information . .just turn up on the day!  No info on showering, or anything. . . .I though it was all a bit laid back really!  I wish I had been given a bit more information about what to expect!
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    il tell you before i had my revision two and a half weeks to be presise i had a bad fall i was visiting with my husband one of his cousins at her house we were having a lovely chat and a cup of tea and homemade cakes when i followed his cousin into the other room to look at something when i tripped over a small step it was more of a half step which i had not seen i fell helpless into the room i hit my head off a solid oak arm of the settee i litterly bounced off it and hit my face off it and also hurt my shoulder as i hit the floor i blacked out for a second  icould not get up my hubby picked me up i had a lump on my head the size of a golf ball over my eye id say it just missed my eye by inches my lip was cut and i was so lucky i didnt loose one of my teeth as well i got a terrible fright i didnt go to the hospital because i didnt want to wait for hours to see someone here you could be waiting up to 8hrs in A&E so i went home and used ice to get the lump down it did go down slowly over a few hours but next morning i had 2 black eyes i looked like id been in a fight i could not go out anyone looking at me would have thought my hubby had given me an almighty beating  by the time my appointment for my pre op came the blackness had gone but my head still hurt to touch the nurse asked had i any bruising or bumps in the last few weeks i said no i knew if i told her she would have cancelled my op  i went ahead with the op and i was fine i never had a fall like that before it really shook me and i was OTT for the next 3wks in case i fell again still to this day i remember that day and the sound of the crack of my head against that chair .
    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      I'd say you had luck on your side, however being a nurse I would have freaked out thinking if I'd had a head injury putting me under anaesthetic might not be a good idea....I think if you or anyone has an injury like that it should be reported the consequences could have been deadly..Glad you are okay.
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Eek, sounds like a nightmare scenario just before a surgery. I am going to a party 3 days before the op which promises 'alcohol -fueled silly games'... Normally something I'd throw myself into wholeheartedly, but sadly Im going to have to be sensible this time... Too many injuries result when silly games get a bit competitive!!
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      your right mary i think i was in soo much pain with my knee and also stressed about going in for op i didnt want to put off the op as id have to wait another 3mths as the consultant has waiting lists even for private patients looking back now it was not the best idea i ever had the point where i hit my head just over my eye to this day still hurts when i press it and this is over 12mths ago so loking back i took a chance going under for the op
      Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I am afraid it is true. I was told at my pre op not to risk shaving my legs or underarms, as any cuts would mean the op wouldn't go ahead. They are looking after your health and cutting the risk of infection, which if ends up being MRSA can close the ward. You will have to be very careful if you want the op to go ahead.
    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      We were told we couldn't shave the leg that was getting the TKR for one week, but where did not shaving the underarm come from?  Are men told not to shave their faces for a week? 
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      I can't answer that buster. I was just told not to to avoid any fresh cuts anywhere on the body. I have another Pre-Op soon - I will ask the question and let you know.
      Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Also important, is no perfumes or even body lotion. It goes without saying - no makeup or nail varnish. Not even hand lotion. You must MUST do all you can to avoid infection.
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    The orthopaedic surgeons use a non touch technique when operating.

    Any infection in bone is very serious.

     

    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      NON TOUCH TECHNIQUE means the surgeon will use forceps inside of directly touchinng tissue or bone even with gloved hands.

       This is unlike general surgeons who wade in with gloved hands.

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      I don't know the tool they use to take off the arthritic bone (thought it was a saw!) but they do have to then smooth it all off too so they can fit the metal on.
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      The surgeon uses forceps instead of gloved fingers or hand to get hold of body tissues and the swabs that are used in tthe course of the operation in a well organised thoroughly cleaned and swabbed operating theatre.

       

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Although they certainly use equipment to shave off bone, there is quite a lot of use of the hands with two gloves on to hold back the two sides of the flesh and remove, for instance, excess cement when they attach the prosthesis. . at least, in Pensacola hospital there is!
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Okay folks they use an electric saw powered either by electricity or an air compression thing... You have a pad put on your upper thigh on opposite side to "earth" you from any electric shock...

      the surgeon who is double gloved will use his fingers to remove bone chips and also any left over cement to get a really smooth finish not unlike putty in tiles etc. while they try to minimise use of gloved hands it does happen. It's impossible to do the surgery totally hands free.

      the infection rate in Australia is pretty low for primary joints but it does go up with revisions. Hence why you are on heavy duty antibiotics for the first 48 hours or so,.

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      It is different in the UK. Supposing the surgeon damages the glove whilst trying to remove the bone chips with his fingers?

      Wouldn't this pose a risk of infection?

      Double gloving does not protect against tearing the gloves .

       

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      In the youtube video I watched they used the forceps to remove the bone, and neat little instrument to saw off a sliver of bone. . not a huge piece like I imagined!  But fingers were certainly used for clearing away excess cement, holding back the two sides of the flesh and skin on either side etc. . Double gloves, yes . . Not sure what my surgeon did. Thank heavens I didn't have to see it, only hear the chopping and whirring and lots and lots of banging, which i didn't actually see on the video.  Not sure what he was up to . . . 
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      HI Martin

      That sounds more like what really happens.

      Surgeon would not risk piercing his gloves by removing bone with his fingers. That would be a risky thing to do.

      They use gentle suction in theatre anyway.

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Martin some times the gloves just split for no reason, or the operating assistant has nicked the glove...

      when they hammer it in they have a plastic type of buffer so he isn't actually  hammering the prosthesis itself.

      in our theatre we also double sterisilzed everything...,

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Mary

      How many operations have you witnessed?

      I feel that the members of this forum should be reassured that orthopaedic surgeons are most diligent and knowledgeable about issuees such as infection. That is why they use a non touch technique .

      This means that throughout surgery they prefer to use forceps to hold swabs for example rather than gloved hands or fingers.

      Any debris is normally irrigated with a sterile fluid and sucked out using very gentle suction.

      It is a very controlled environment.

      Orthopaedic surgeons also wear extra thick protective sterile gowns. These are called orthopaedic gowns.

      Control of infection is taken extremely seriously.

      Also surgeons do not discuss all the details of an operation .They try to reassure the patient.

      Jean

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Non touch means whenever it is a practixal proposition to do so that is using practicable possible using forceps rather than touching tissues with  gloved hands or fingers
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Jean I worked for 3 Orthopaedic surgeons for nearly 8 years until it got to a point where I physically couldn't remove the instruments from the steriliser due to 2 reverse shoulders.

      Orthopaedic surgeons and their team are extremely diligent, I never said they weren't nor did I imply they weren't diligent...was simply replying to Martin a few questions he had asked.

      Also being a recipient of a metal on metal hip that had been recalled makes me ask a hell of a lot more question when someone wants to slice me open,....having worked in that environment I thought I knew most..but there is always something to learn.

       

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Hi Mary

      Sorry to hear all this. Please do not think I am not empathic.I think it is terrible what happened to you about the recalled prosthesis and so unjust and unfair

      I also fully empathise with your  problem with your shoulders from lifting heavy orthopaedic instruments from the steriliser, autoclave.

      I had a dislocated shoulder tw years ago and it is still giving me problems.

      I was put on co codamol which I took very stringently by that I mean that I took half the dose twice a day instead of the full dose four ties a day.

      An A and E dr  prescribed three lots of antibiotis at once for a query pleurisy  , he did not order any bloodworks not even a chest x ray.

      Four days later I woke up with heavy, very cold legs. YES neuropathy.

      Thank you doc!

      That was over 18 months ago and I am still in pain.

      I am unable to have the usual nerve pain relief such as lyrica, amytrptylline etc. Can never spell that word!

      I am on warfarin.

      I am in daily pain thanks to previous occupation.

      I do not blame you for asking questions. I know that some drs don't like patients asking questions but it is their right to do so.

      Hope you understand where I am coming from

      Jean

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      whoops

      I wrote.....

      praxtical  etc, etc.I

      should have written 'whenever it is a practical proposition to do so the surgeon .....

      I was writing the msg very late when very tired. Sorry.

       

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      why am I being modded?

      I have just been prescribed neurontin for pn. The Patient Information Leaflet has not been put in the box of tablets despite it being a legal requirement to inform the patient aout any dug that is prescribed for them.

      So I googled Neurontin and found it cauuses suicidal ideation etc etc.

      It also interacts with lots of other drugs and is contraindiicated in kidney disease etc, etc.

      Needless to say I am not prepared to take this drug.

      I am left high and dry in pain at 3.14 am.

      Thiat is the NHS for you.

       

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Jean, I have taken neurontin for over 3 years , I had no side effects from it whatsoever and it helped tremendously for my pain,

      they have to list all possible side effects and scenarios even if you read  the stuff on aspirin or paracetamol it would be just as alarming. 

      I hope you get some relief.

      Mary xx

       

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      if you look at any tablets !!!! information most will list side effects most are very very rare ,if your being prescribed any tablets by your gp then i dont see why you would say some drugs are dangerous ,surely doctors wont prescribe tablets wwithout outlining possible side effects or possibility of getting hooked on them without giving you propper care i think jean you are scare mongering here i think you over think alot of possibilities and people dont need you to overly worry them
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Linda

      Thank you for your response.

      The side effects of Neurontin /Gabapentin are listed on the Patient Information leaflet.

      I was merely relaying information.  

      Hope you are OK after your fall.

      Kind regards

      jean

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Neurontin was terrible for me. . .turned me into a different person!  But I'm glad it has worked for you.  Actaully, I think the possible side effects of aspirin and parcetamol, if taken within the prescribed limits, are nowhere near as extreme as neurontin, although of course, paracetamol will kill you at quite a low dose.  
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Side effects are usually listed in different categories. . fairly common (one in ten) less common, and rare . . . Unfortunately, somebody has to be the rare one!  I loved tramadol, but lots of people have really bad adverse effects. one lady on this forum was given it in hospital, and more or less attacked the nurses because the terrifying hallucinations it gave her made her think she was in mortal danger! I think we all need to listen to the doctor and then make our own informed opinion based on our own experience.
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Jean, it was prescribed for nerve pain, I had so many surgeries on my legs that it left me with dreadful nerve pain, so bad I would spend a month at a time in hospital.....6  X hips 1 X knee 3 X Avn removed from tibia and 3 X AVN removed from femurs ..not to mention the arthroscopies...

      the metal on metal hip caused bladder and kidney issues along with a stone or two...

      Neurontin, worked a whole lot better than the spinal pump they put in. Which caused Encephalitis.

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Hi Mary . . I've just come back from the doctor who says I have osteochondritis. . i believe this is caused by lack of blood to the bone, so perhaps it's vaguely connected to AVN . . ou have certainly had a bad time with all those surgeries . . . I'm waiting to see what they advise me to do now.  Until today, they were telling me it was nerve pain, and now it's something completely different!  Still been prescribed Lyrica though . . it's all a bit confusing!
      Report / Delete Reply

Join this discussion or start a new one?

New discussion Reply

Report or request deletion

Thanks for your help!

We want the forums to be a useful resource for our users but it is important to remember that the forums are not moderated or reviewed by doctors and so you should not rely on opinions or advice given by other users in respect of any healthcare matters. Always speak to your doctor before acting and in cases of emergency seek appropriate medical assistance immediately. Use of the forums is subject to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and steps will be taken to remove posts identified as being in breach of those terms.

newnav-down newnav-up