Need a TKR on the other knee? If not now.....when?

Posted by Chris Trout, Volunteer Mentor @artscaping, May 20 11:08pm

Ten years ago, my inn to inn walking group locked me in my own car and conducted an intervention. They said the pain on my face because of my knee disturbed them and they wanted me to have it fixed before we took off for Ireland and the "Ring of Kerry". And so I did it right away. The surgery went well and we continued to train for a different adventure every year.

Fast forward to now. The other knee….the right one, just fizzled in the last few months. A large Baker's cyst and what was called a "real mess" caused by pseudogout crystals on the meniscus told me what was coming. I just didn't know how bad it was needed. We looked at the new images and talked about recuperation time for someone looking at turning 80. Do I want to give up a year recuperating from another TKR? Are there no options?

The emotional issue for me was a planned visit to Galveston shores to spend a week with our very young grandchildren. Jay Paul will turn 4 on May 27 and Amelia Marie will be 2 the following week. I don't want to miss being with them. Without surgery, I will need to use a cane for walking and a wheelchair in the airport.

As we practiced shared decision-making, we explored other options, and guess what?. I am going to Texas. Here's how. The Baker's cyst was drained, and cortisone was injected. The other fluid-filled areas will be handled with multiple MFR sessions every week.

Did I make the right decision? What would you do? I would appreciate your opinion, your shared experiences and any other ideas you think should be considered.

And just so you know how difficult this is……I am attaching a couple of recent pictures of the grandchildren. Enjoy.

Chris

Chris,

Tough decision, but being able to see your beautiful grandchildren is worth delaying TKN. Hope the alternative treatments work for you.

I suggest you still take wheelchair in airport. It is inconvenience, but rest knee when you can.

Enjoy you trip to TX.

Laurie

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Chris – ABSOLUTELY the right choice. Get someone to take lots of photos of you and the grands for you to enjoy during recovery. It will be an awesome memory that will bring a smile to your face and lessen the pain and boredom of therapy!
Relax (as much as you can with those two bundles of energy!) and enjoy.
Sue

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Of course you are doing the right thing, delay the knee replacement as long as possible. Maybe the treatments will work. I too need both knees replaced, but I have a child who needs me more. Mine will have to wait for a time when she is grown, meanwhile I’m trying to make my knees work as long as possible! Have fun with the grands!!

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@rebeccakay

Of course you are doing the right thing, delay the knee replacement as long as possible. Maybe the treatments will work. I too need both knees replaced, but I have a child who needs me more. Mine will have to wait for a time when she is grown, meanwhile I’m trying to make my knees work as long as possible! Have fun with the grands!!

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i have had poor luck with my TKR of 7 years ago. Swollen for 7 years. I found PRP to work on the other knee along with a brace that i wear for walking, golf, gardening etc. The PRP takes out the pain and arthritis. Yes, it can be expensive. Some insurance plans are covering it. Dr says , chances are i will never have to have another TKR. Been doing this for 10 years.

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@681

What is PRP?

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Hello @681, Welcome to Connect. PRP or Platelet-rich plasma therapy is a form of regenerative medicine. Here is some more info on PRP:
— Navigating the hope and hype of regenerative medicine: https://www.mayoclinic.org/medical-professionals/orthopedic-surgery/news/navigating-the-hope-and-hype-of-regenerative-medicine/mac-20482553

Can I ask what you were searching for when you found Connect?

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@rebeccakay

Of course you are doing the right thing, delay the knee replacement as long as possible. Maybe the treatments will work. I too need both knees replaced, but I have a child who needs me more. Mine will have to wait for a time when she is grown, meanwhile I’m trying to make my knees work as long as possible! Have fun with the grands!!

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Thank you @rebeccakay and others. The vote is for delaying the TKR. I just got back from today's guided aspiration and the doctor gave me the before and after pictures. Amazing how much fluid can build up in a few days.

I was told that I would need to be serious about scheduling the surgery upon my return. The pain is quite limiting.

I had not thought about PRP. And yet, I had very few problems with the left knee. It is holding up well at 10 years and thousands of walking miles. And the recuperation went very well. I never had to use a walker. My surgeon was so pleased he paraded me around to his colleagues……sharing the positive outcome. He had asked me if he could make the incision about 2 inches longer to give him a little more room to get things in right the first time saying that it would also make recuperation a bit easier.

So I am off to play with the grands. I'll let you all know how it goes. Stick around because I am grateful that you are sharing your experiences with me and assume that I will need you all again.

May you have happiness and the causes of happiness.
Chris

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@artscaping Dear Chris!!! As one who can identify with you on every level here, from knees to age to babies, I can only tell you that I had second knee done 5 weeks after the first, six years ago, and in 4 weeks I “graduated” from therapy with flying colors. Both knees are pain free and neither one has to carry the weight for the other. I can’t advise you, And you don’t need a reminder that we are all different. But one thing I might add is that you don’t need total 100% recovery to get back to doing what you love. Just ask yourself if a month postop would be better than what you are living with now and that might help you with your decision. Best wishes, Nancy

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@1nan

@artscaping Dear Chris!!! As one who can identify with you on every level here, from knees to age to babies, I can only tell you that I had second knee done 5 weeks after the first, six years ago, and in 4 weeks I “graduated” from therapy with flying colors. Both knees are pain free and neither one has to carry the weight for the other. I can’t advise you, And you don’t need a reminder that we are all different. But one thing I might add is that you don’t need total 100% recovery to get back to doing what you love. Just ask yourself if a month postop would be better than what you are living with now and that might help you with your decision. Best wishes, Nancy

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Wow, my dear Nancy…..you have done it. I see what you are saying. I was comparing this to my prior life and thought I had to get back to walking 10 miles in the sand every day. Thank you so much. Yesterday I had the knee drained again and was told to get ready for surgery. I will explore the surgeon's plan for this knee when I return from Texas. Until then, I am just going to be TuTu. (Hawaiian for grandma.)

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@roch

Chris,

Tough decision, but being able to see your beautiful grandchildren is worth delaying TKN. Hope the alternative treatments work for you.

I suggest you still take wheelchair in airport. It is inconvenience, but rest knee when you can.

Enjoy you trip to TX.

Laurie

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Thank you for your feedback. I am packing right now. I had my knee drained again yesterday so it should be reasonable for the flight down.

May you find joy today. It is waiting for you.
Chris

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