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to want knee replacement/op/whatever NOW?

(40 Posts)
marjproops Mon 13-May-13 18:45:46

im 48, not 88. Im told Im too young for knee replacements,they only last 20 years. ok. in 20 years, if I live that long Ill be 68.

i want to be able to walk NOW, i can get a scooter thing at 68.

was talking to a friend today also in this predicament. shes 57. in 20 years shell be 77.

shes told shes too young to have one now.

the cashier in a shop also the same. shes 61. 20 years time, 81.

there seem to be so many younger people around with walking sticks.

so why????? if i could afford to go private would my knees be done then?

any docs out there? what is young then?

id like to walk/run/play sports NOW, while I CAN.

valiumredhead Mon 13-May-13 18:46:39

HOw odd, I know someone in their late 40's who has just had one.

WorraLiberty Mon 13-May-13 18:49:56

My neghbour is 52 and he had one last year?

The only condition attached was that he had to lose weight.

Mondrian Mon 13-May-13 18:50:26

My dad went private but it was the same, they don't like to do it as its a one time operation as it can only be followed by amputation. However not sure if they do short term fix ups on NHS, he had 3 before getting his knee replacement surgery. Fix ups is just cleaning up of the joint which buys some comfort and time before biting the bullet.

Reducing weight (swimming) & cortisone injections also ease the pain.

Bingdweller Mon 13-May-13 18:54:38

Depending on the cause of your knee pain and the area/s of arthritis (if this is the cause) there may be other options available to you. As said previously, cortisone/steroid injections can offer temporary relief and there are surgical options including osteochondral grafting, MACI, and arthroscopic meniscectomy to trim/repair/remove cartilage.

If GP makes referral to a good knee surgeon, you should explore these possibilities with them.

digerd Mon 13-May-13 19:02:00

4 years ago, my neighbour who was then 78 had both hers done.
You can't kneel or crouch with them. She fell over flat on her front and couldn't bend her knees to get up. But she can walk much faster than I can.
She'd had bad knees since her 50s.

A friend aged 52 had her knee cleaned out and bits of arthritis chipped away, and some people think she had a knee replacement, but she told me didn't.

They are much heavier than normal bone and some people find it difficult to get used to.

marjproops Mon 13-May-13 19:02:59

ive had cortisone that did absolutely nothing, theres a 'gap' behind one of my knees where its eroded (due to a road accident years ago), ive had 2 ops already on one of them, the 'good ' knee had enough of holding up everything and gave way last year, ive asked for 'something' like, say, siliconr injections to fill the gap, my knees scrape like mad if i have to use stairs, and i cant walk more than about 15 paces until they buckle.

im with a walking stick, feeling like a old woman of 99 as it is...whats not to decide?

i try and exercise what i can manage, my weights okay, i did physio for years but it made it worse, doc said it was to strengthen the muscles around the knees but its the knees that are bad, not the muscles, im faily fit, my muscles dont go, its the knees.

im in a lOT of pain ALL the time, I mean, hello????

and there seem to be loads of people the same.
bing im going to make a note of the options, got an app this week again and ill take these to the doc.

DoubleMum Mon 13-May-13 19:14:28

I am 43 now and I had both knees replaced when I was 40. They had been bad for a long time but got much worse until I basically couldn't walk across the room without crying. I had Bupa through work and my GP referred me to a consultant privately. My consultant didn't blink an eye TBH - he said he could tell me to wait until I'd lost weight, or was older, but what was the point? I couldn't walk THEN. Obviously I don't know what would have happened had I pursued it on the NHS, as I didn't need to, but I fully understand if you have reached the point where the pain is unbearable, because that's where I was.
I can't lie, the ops were horrible, particularly as we discovered morphine didn't work for me. It was pretty hard going for the 2nd op knowing what I was letting myself in for, but even given that it was SO worth it.
If you have any questions feel free to message me.

digerd Mon 13-May-13 19:16:56

I tore my cartilage 13 years ago, but it did improve over 3 years. Then it got worse. I had the Arthroscopy - keyhole surgery to remove a considerable amount of the cartilage, and told after the op they had found arthritis in the bones of the knee and would need a replacement in the future.

I have lost muscle tone in that leg but due to ageing, <?> and being in a bungalow and not going up and down stairs . I would not be able to lift my leg with a heavy metal replacement < so hoping I shall never need it>.

SauvignonBlanche Mon 13-May-13 19:21:21

"My dad went private but it was the same, they don't like to do it as its a one time operation as it can only be followed by amputation"
This is not true, revision surgery is commonplace though more often done at a specialist hospital.

marjproops Mon 13-May-13 19:39:06

Im SOOOOOO going to state the case again this week at the hospital.

ive stressed a million times Im a FT carer for DC and need to be as fit as poss for her.

thanks for all the replies btw, it helps a lot to know whats going on in the world of the NHS!!

Yawn4theday Mon 13-May-13 19:40:50

Usually doctors (including those in private practice) do not like to do total knee replacements on people over 65. They should last 15-20 years, but who can say how medicine will come on in the next 20 years.

As you say OP, it depends on how bad it is now, quality of life thing etc. I also know a 49 year old friend who is having one done at the Royal National Orthopaedic in Stanmore.

I assume this is an orthopaedic consultant telling you this and not your GP. Can you get yourself referred to more specialist centre?

icklemssunshine1 Mon 13-May-13 19:45:01

I feel your pain - literally! I have two slipped discs that are compressing my sciatic nerve. A pain nurse told me if I was double my age (I'm 34) I'd have surgery tomorrow. Yet as I'm "young" I've had to manage nearly a year on pain medication & I'm waiting to have steroid injections & that's only cos I've now been referred for private treatment by GP as he said its disgusting how long I've had to wait. Keep badgering your GP & hopefully yours will be as supportive as mine.

SauvignonBlanche Mon 13-May-13 19:45:52

Please don't believe anyone who says that total knee replacements cannot be revised, see here
Maybe ask your GP to refer you to a specialist arthroplasty consultant.

NUFC69 Mon 13-May-13 20:05:49

I was 65 in March and I had my left knee replaced two and a half years ago. My knees had been playing me up for years before but it quite suddenly got much worse. The wait for the operation was from July to October. However, whilst the pain has gone I would now say that I consider myself disabled whereas I didn't before.

It's all the things that I can't do that I miss. Exercise is difficult - I walk with a limp, and am not allowed to do anything energetic (I was playing badminton the week before my knee suddenly went), swimming is difficult as I no longer know where my knee is, if you see what I mean? They have to cut a major nerve to do the operation and the feeling has never come back properly round about the knee.

My other knee wants replacing; the consultant has already said to just let my GP know when I am ready, but the thought of having it done fills me with dread. I can't even do a simple thing like climb into bed the way I used to - I have to sit on the bed and swing my legs up. And, of course, you can't kneel so that means things like weeding the garden, cleaning the floor are no-nos (not a bad thing, you might say!).

Sorry to be so negative about it all, but it is honestly how I feel about it - so please don't think it will necessarily be wonderful when you have it done. Have I been unlucky? Possibly, but there is no going back now. I just wish I had taken some stronger painkillers!

Good luck, though, with whatever happens.

DoubleMum Mon 13-May-13 20:05:49

Digerd I don't find them heavy, and I have found my muscle tone has improved a lot. I still don't have anywhere near a full bend but life is 1000% better than it was before I had them done.

marjproops Mon 13-May-13 20:08:31

yawnyes this is a consultant at the hosp, im taking note of everything here on this thread and will take the power of mumsnet to him!!!!!

marjproops Mon 13-May-13 20:09:34

stupid question alert- do metal things in your knees beep at airports?!?

landofsoapandglory Mon 13-May-13 20:12:30

I live in chronic pain and would do anything to get out of it, so I know exactly where you are coming from.

Whereabouts are you OP? If you are in the East Midlands I can give you the name of an excellent knee surgeon.

landofsoapandglory Mon 13-May-13 20:14:16

marj I have metal in my back and pelvis, I didn't go off leaving the UK, but it did leaving Lanzarote last year.

Yawn4theday Mon 13-May-13 20:15:11

No, usually made of titanium or other type of metal that will not beep at security.

Good luck with consultant.

Smudging Mon 13-May-13 20:17:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Spikeytree Mon 13-May-13 20:21:20

I'm 32 and have been told I need both knees replacing but they won't touch them for another 20 years. I'm in pain a lot but I've seen family members have joints replaced at a young age and it has gone wrong, so I'm in two minds about having it done even then. My DSis had her hip replaced 4 years ago at 36 and is still on crutches, and my DM had her hip replaced at 31, then had me, and when they came to replace the replacement they found they were unable to do so, so she has no hip in one side. I'll definitely be holding out as long as possible, although I do know how debilitating the pain can get.

NUFC69 Mon 13-May-13 20:21:32

Whenever I go through electronic security at the airport I never hear a beep, but they always ask me if I have had a replacement (they've never demanded to see my scar, though).

SquinkiesRule Mon 13-May-13 20:24:31

My sister was given the same line, you are too young. It's a stupid excuse, she is practically disabled needing it done, and in a lot of pain. she was late 40's too. Yet they would rather her be on disability young than continue her career, then when she is "old enough" get it done, when she would be getting ready to retire anyway. Makes no sense what so ever.

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