Knee Replacement Failure - Need total reconstruction

Posted by babette @babette, Jul 27, 2019

I'm pretty devastated, everyone. I had my R TKR a year ago and always knew something wasn't right. My initial surgeon said everything looked great and to give it time, PT, etc. Well I went to one of the top ortho hospitals in the country yesterday and saw a surgeon who comes very highly recommended. He told me my femur is out of alignment, there is a problem with a ligament, and my knee cap is off to one side. I wish I had written down more specifics, dh was with me but once we heard this would all have to be redone, I think we went into kind of shock and didn't process the details very well. **He understood completely why I've been in so much pain this past year. ** He referred me to a colleague who does more complex revisions than he does and I feel great about that but have to wait a month to see him and begin the process. All over again. I have no idea what this will be like, the actual surgery, recovery, etc.

I'd love to hear from others who have gone through this. Also, has anyone successfully sued the surgeon who screwed up? I'm furious to have lost a year of my life to this and now even more time to the repair and recovery.

@contentandwell

@mwatts91757 I think that @babette may be helpful in recommending a revision surgeon. I believe that the doctor she went to who recommended him is the same excellent surgeon who did my second TKR and I have been very happy with that. If he’s recommending someone I would trust his opinion. Are you also in the Boston area? I am in southern NH and go to Boston for most of my healthcare, most often MGH, but Brigham and Womens does have a better reputation for orthopedics than they do. I also chose B&W because the doctor I went to is a developer of the Conformis knee and that was the knee I wanted.

It does seem as if some people are helped by the CPM machine, but I do not feel that it was helpful for me.
JK

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May I ask how the conformis knee differs from the styker prosthesis ?

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@contentandwell

@mwatts91757 I think that @babette may be helpful in recommending a revision surgeon. I believe that the doctor she went to who recommended him is the same excellent surgeon who did my second TKR and I have been very happy with that. If he’s recommending someone I would trust his opinion. Are you also in the Boston area? I am in southern NH and go to Boston for most of my healthcare, most often MGH, but Brigham and Womens does have a better reputation for orthopedics than they do. I also chose B&W because the doctor I went to is a developer of the Conformis knee and that was the knee I wanted.

It does seem as if some people are helped by the CPM machine, but I do not feel that it was helpful for me.
JK

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What is the name of your surgeon at B+W hospital that uses the conformis?

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@mwatts91757

May I ask how the conformis knee differs from the styker prosthesis ?

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Custom-made joint based on your anatomy rather than off the shelf joint replacement

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@jeffkirc

Custom-made joint based on your anatomy rather than off the shelf joint replacement

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Ok thank you. And only Brigham’s &women’s does this.
I’m sorry there were so many responses I’m getting things confused . I can’t remember if it was you who told me Brigham+women’s or somebody else

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@jeffkirc

Custom-made joint based on your anatomy rather than off the shelf joint replacement

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@mwatts91757 As @jeffkirc responded, the Conformis is custom made for you.

The surgeon I went to is Dr. Wolfgang Fitz. I really liked him. I experienced more pain than typical for about six weeks so he was seeing me every two weeks. The pain suddenly lifted so then we just scheduled an appointment for a year after the surgery. I will be two years out in October, and very happy with my knee. I fell 9 days ago and fractured part of my femur in that leg. I am now hurting all the way down so I hope that’s referred pain, not damage to my knee.
JK

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@contentandwell

@mwatts91757 As @jeffkirc responded, the Conformis is custom made for you.

The surgeon I went to is Dr. Wolfgang Fitz. I really liked him. I experienced more pain than typical for about six weeks so he was seeing me every two weeks. The pain suddenly lifted so then we just scheduled an appointment for a year after the surgery. I will be two years out in October, and very happy with my knee. I fell 9 days ago and fractured part of my femur in that leg. I am now hurting all the way down so I hope that’s referred pain, not damage to my knee.
JK

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You know this is the second referral I got to Dr. Wolfgang Fitz!!
The first one was very much off-the-cuff I met her at physical therapy we had a brief conversation . She claims that they scanned her knee and fit her for her prosthesis . But now that I’ve been talking to you it makes sense what she said .

You have a fractured femur ?
That’s terrible .
And IMagine very painful

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@mwatts91757

Ok thank you. And only Brigham’s &women’s does this.
I’m sorry there were so many responses I’m getting things confused . I can’t remember if it was you who told me Brigham+women’s or somebody else

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@jeffkirc There are quite a few doctors who use the Conformis knee. If you google Conformis there will be a link to which doctors do it. Since I go to Boston for most of my medical care (I live about 55 miles north in NH), it was an easy choice to use Dr. Fitz since he is one of the developers of the knee. They do scan your knee. I know it is more costly than other knees but it was paid for in full. I really love Dr. Fitz too, he is very caring and diligent, just not “warm and fuzzy”.

Yep, I have a “minimally displaced fracture of the greater trochanter, L femur”, and yes, it really is very painful. I had been so excited and looking forward to my son’s wedding in CO in a few weeks but this has really put a damper on it. I am not looking forward to the flight at all. 🙁

I’m working on not feeling sorry for myself, there are so many worse problems I could have, but it’s interference with a very special week does have me down.
JK

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I hope you can stay as positive as possible through this next chapter in your life. Cheers, Jeff

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@contentandwell

@jeffkirc There are quite a few doctors who use the Conformis knee. If you google Conformis there will be a link to which doctors do it. Since I go to Boston for most of my medical care (I live about 55 miles north in NH), it was an easy choice to use Dr. Fitz since he is one of the developers of the knee. They do scan your knee. I know it is more costly than other knees but it was paid for in full. I really love Dr. Fitz too, he is very caring and diligent, just not “warm and fuzzy”.

Yep, I have a “minimally displaced fracture of the greater trochanter, L femur”, and yes, it really is very painful. I had been so excited and looking forward to my son’s wedding in CO in a few weeks but this has really put a damper on it. I am not looking forward to the flight at all. 🙁

I’m working on not feeling sorry for myself, there are so many worse problems I could have, but it’s interference with a very special week does have me down.
JK

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That really is unfortunate – to have the fracture happen in the first place, and to happen now, when you have a special event coming up. Will you be able to endure the sitting in the plane? I have had problems with trochanteric bursitis several times, so I can imagine what a bone injury in that area must feel like. Also, I was very surprised that someone as fit (as per your impressive exercise regimen) experienced a fall. Anyway, my best wishes for a speedy recovery. Any idea what the time line is supposed to be?

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@contentandwell

@jeffkirc There are quite a few doctors who use the Conformis knee. If you google Conformis there will be a link to which doctors do it. Since I go to Boston for most of my medical care (I live about 55 miles north in NH), it was an easy choice to use Dr. Fitz since he is one of the developers of the knee. They do scan your knee. I know it is more costly than other knees but it was paid for in full. I really love Dr. Fitz too, he is very caring and diligent, just not “warm and fuzzy”.

Yep, I have a “minimally displaced fracture of the greater trochanter, L femur”, and yes, it really is very painful. I had been so excited and looking forward to my son’s wedding in CO in a few weeks but this has really put a damper on it. I am not looking forward to the flight at all. 🙁

I’m working on not feeling sorry for myself, there are so many worse problems I could have, but it’s interference with a very special week does have me down.
JK

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At @contentandwell – I am so sorry that your fall/fracture happened – and especially sorry about WHEN it happened. I wish you could have just gotten to Denver and enjoyed the wedding with no extra issues. You have every right to feel sorry for yourself. Does the doctor expect the pain to abate as your recovery progresses?

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@jeffkirc

I hope you can stay as positive as possible through this next chapter in your life. Cheers, Jeff

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@jeffkirc Thanks, Jeff. I am working very hard at staying positive. I hardly slept last night due to pain so this morning I was pretty down and couldn't imagine myself doing the trek to CO but it is tolerable right now, thanks to some meds. I hope the doctor will re-prescribe, they are so overly cautious now.

@ellerbracke That is what I am concerned, the plane and then the activities out there — a family barbecue at my son's house on Thursday night, a big rehearsal dinner and reception on Friday night (that I have arranged and am paying for so I certainly want to be present), a women's brunch with hair being done at my son's home on Saturday morning and then the wedding on Saturday night. Our plans are to take a red-eye home on Tuesday night, we wanted to do some sightseeing but at this point, I think I may look into changing our flights. Even if we have a penalty it would be somewhat offset by not having the expense of a hotel room.
I think the extent of the injury probably has more to do with my bone density than anything else, although my husband says I went down really hard so it may just be that. I broke a vertebra when I was in my 50s and they immediately thought it must be due to my bones being weak but when they did a density scan they were great but I had not gone through menopause at that time. Another one I went down hard on, on concrete steps. This accident happened, ironically, due to extreme pain in my other leg from sciatica! The pain was so intense that I passed out or probably it was a presyncope episode. Now that leg doesn't hurt at all! I hate not exercising, I feel like my hard work is going down the tubes now. I feel like a slug.

@debbraw Thanks. The doctors have not said much about the pain. The strange thing is that when I went to the ER last Tuesday they kept asking me about my level of pain (1 to 10) and when I was lying on the bed it was negligible but last night it was very bad as it was this morning, even just lying in bed. I hope I haven't done anything to make things worse. They said with this type of fracture since it's not weight-bearing, that I could do whatever I am comfortable with. Right now I am not feeling very comfortable with that and I may try to get in to see the doctor again, or possibly go the Boston to see a different ortho. I would be handling this so much better if not for the timing. I don't dare tell my son that there is some possibility that I may not be able to go, and I don't even want to admit that to myself. I know if I don't go that my husband won't either and he's my son's best man!
JK

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JK @contentandwell, It seems like when it rains it pours. I am so sorry to hear about your fracture and pain. It would be inconvenient at any time but especially when it interferes with your son's wedding. Is there a possibility of wearing some sort of brace to prevent any further problems and hopefully reduce the pain some if you are able to travel with it?

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