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Readers Respond: Having Knee Replacement Surgery

Responses: 41

By

Updated January 13, 2010

Am I ready?

After athroscopy on both knees and numerous pain treatments, my doctor told me it's time to consider knee replacement surgery. I have trouble walking distances and general shopping, but they say when "you wake up at night from the pain" it's time. I wake up because my knees become stiff and won't bend when I move, is this the pain?
—Guest Cajun754

Limiting my life

Some doctor's seem to use an arbitrary age to determine time of surgery, but I think it's more about functioning in everyday life. Two months ago (10-21-10), I had my right knee replaced. I'm 49. When the surgeon told me that eventually it would need to be done I cried. It was a shock. Then I went home, the cortisone shot wore off quickly, and I stopped doing most of the things I enjoy because of pain. Recovery has not been the walk in the park that many indicate. I'm still uncomfortable and still have some pain two months out. I spent close to 3 weeks in rehab because I live alone; when you live alone, even if someone stays the night, you tend to do too much. My surgeon did not tell me to expect going to "a nursing home" for that long! Doing PT diligently is critical. I am confident that I will soon be pain-free and function well. But nothing anyone said prepared me for the level of pain which I experienced after surgery.
—Guest Anne

Pain and Restricted Mobility

I have bone on bone with a torn ACL in left knee. I can still play tennis (doubles), and walk 2 miles any day I wish. But I do experience pain during the night and restricted mobility with limited knee flexion. I'm 74 and worry if I wait too long I may regret it...
—Guest desertdood

Knee Replacement After Multiple Surgerie

I'm 49 years old and have had 8 surgeries on my right knee two of which were ACL reconstructions. I have a hard time walking (painful) and with a limp. I wake up during the night. My family physician said he hasn't seen a knee this bad for someone my age. He said knee replacement is needed. I have no problem with PT--I had to be slowed down by my orthopedic surgeon after my last ACL surgery. I have been athletic all my life.
—John2261

Both knees in Aug 2010

I can walk but cannot kneel or squat and do not have strength to walk up or down when climbing stairs and also have pain on or off for many years. Hope after operation, I will have better quality of life.
—Guest Mary Chia

Go for it!

3 years ago I had my total right knee replaced. It went well - after 3 wks in a rehab facility and 6 wks of physical therapy at home, I got around just fine! NOW, my left knee will be totally replaced on May 11, 2010! Same doctor etc. I just turned 79 years of age and look forward to being free of that pain plus being able to walk and ride the exercycle again!! I'm certainly glad I did it and expect this next surgery to be just fine also! It's true that the therapy is not a lot of fun, but necessary and worth it! My doc doesn't require therapy up front........okay with me since it went well! Go do it!
—Guest Dolores

I Kept Falling Because of Bad Knees

The falls I was taking became a daily hazard that kept me from accomplishing daily chores.
—dsholly3313

Knee replacement time

When it interferes with my everyday activities and decreases my quality of life, yes yes yes. But it's not as easy as people. The PT is torture.....and give it a year to really heal. Yes, there is no pain in the joint itself, but there is in the surrounding tissues, etc. Almost a year post-op and it still gets painful if I turn it or bend it too far, and it gets stiff if I've been on it too long. It's definitely better than it was, but not perfect by any means.
—pastyqueen

Being Positive and Working Hard

Life has no guarantees, but we have to have a positive attitude. Teresacay statees, "Once I have two replacement knees, I will be an offical old lady." Who says? If you think you will be an official old lady, then you will be! We can be mentally "young" or mentally "Old" at 53 or any age. I am scheduled for surgery in May, 2010. I am a "young" 62 and I can't wait to face the surgery, be grateful to be in a first world country, and take the challenge head on. It is knee replacement surgery, not open heart surgery or a brain operation. Take heart. This is only my opinion, but I think those who had a negative result are more likely to complain (and frighten many). The "force" be with you all.
—Puffinorca

It is time!

After 8 years of increasing pain and at 47 years old it is time for bilateral knee replacement. I am looking forward t be able to surf again (can't squat down at all anymore) and be athletic. It is a bitter cycle of pain and gaining weight-to exercise hurts and to gain weight because of no exercise hurts...
—kauileslie

New Quality of Life

Having suffered from an old injury, becoming deformed in my 40s,decided at 53 it was time for knee replacement. I had been through shots, cartilage grafting, laser scaling, and numerous scopes. It was explained to me I would only get out what I put in. Today I walk without having to stop every hundred yards, and I'm enjoying it.
—chw53

I Regret My Decision

I had knee replacement 2 months ago. Unlike the hype that surrounds this procedure I am no better off. I have just as much pain as before surgery but less range of motion. At this point i would never do it again. I regret it and hope i will feel better about it later on.
—samna

Can I put it off for a while?

I'm 62 and very active. I've been told by my ortho doc that I'm facing the inevitability of knee replacement. I'm bone-on-bone by x-ray, but don't have significant pain yet. Should I wait and for how long? I'd love some feedback on people who have been in my position.
—Guest Nancy

putting off knee replacement surgery

To Teresacay- knee replacement surgery will not make you an old lady! The lifestyle you lead now, sounds like an old lady! I would think after the surgery you would feel younger because there would be no more pain and you will be able to more around more freely. Im 51 and its time for knee replacement. Both knees are bad. After reading most responds about knee replacement, I'm feeling more comfortable about the surgery. I want to get back to riding horses, any thoughts or comments about this?
—valree33

4 1/2 months post op

I'm 57, had bilateral knee replacement in February 2009. The worst part for me was the narcotics. Apparently I don't tolerate them and I was nauseous for 8 weeks. The knees are doing good. I'm walking 2 miles, 5 times a week and just stared back to tennis last week. I'm getting more mobile every week. When I overdo, I do experience some discomfort. Icing seems to help. I still swell in my knees and ankles. Am told that will go away around the 6th month. My big question? When will the knees feel like they are mine?
—Guest Marly

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