Bad To The Bone

I had a topic for today, but my brain is frazzled. We're still working on that bathroom remodel, and had gotten very close to the end when Greg's knees gave out. He had to rest and recover. That wouldn't have been a big deal but I had already asked the glass guy to come over and take measurements today. I had to cancel.

There are four critical areas that need to be finished before the glass guy can get accurate measurements. Unfortunately all those areas are stone work, expensive pieces that need to be cut precisely. I would never trust myself to cut stone. I have to wait for Greg.

I kept him on the couch all weekend with an ice pack and Naproxen while I fetched and carried. I had to ask the glass guy for yet another extension while I wait for hubby to recover.

After this project is done I want Greg to go to the doctor and see about getting his knees replaced. 

We wanted to get them done done in 2020, but that's when that pesky pandemic started. 2021 was no better.

I don't think he should wait another year. He's in terrible pain all the time.

Here's what I know about joint replacement from friends and family who have had them done.

  • A good surgeon is key.

  • Diligent physical therapy defines how quickly you regain mobility.

  • And finally, women can handle both knees done at once, but never attempt it with a man. A nurse told me this while I was visiting my elderly neighbor in the hospital after her knee surgeries. She said her male patients were big babies while the women (regardless of age) just toughed it out. 

Knowing my baby, he's better off doing them one at a time. He might wimp out of the second surgery, but I'm good at nagging.

So I'd like to put it out there. Have you, or someone you know had a joint replaced? What was the experience like?

Meanwhile, spring has sprung by me. All the trees are leafing out. How is it where you are?


Jackie said…
Maria before the 2011 fire we had an elderly neighbor man who had a knee replacement done, not sure if he did both are only one.

He was very good to himself and did everything right so after he completely healed and exercised properly it was like no surgery ever took place.

He told me that it was the best decision ever made because the after surgery pain was nothing like what he had been in for years with bad knees.

I have used a lady PTA a few times who had her one knee operated on twice, bad surgeon first time.

She has no complaints now and is only in her mid fifties so had both surgeries early in life because of medical necessity.

Hopefully Greg will find the right person and you can convince him to go through it twice so life gets better!
Maria Zannini said…
Jackie: The majority of the people I spoke to have all told me it was the best decision they ever made.

I only met one person who wasn't happy and I think it had a lot to do with his surgeon. I always wondered if he had it redone since then.

Every time I meet someone who tells me of a joint replacement surgery I always ask about their surgeon and if they would recommend him.
Mike Keyton said…
Sympathies and best wishes, Maria. You're right about a good surgeon being vital. Most of those I know with hip or knee replacements have had positive experiences. The exception is my uncle Dave who has been in pain ever since. He gets by with regular injections of something or other which removes the pain completely for about three months when he has to have another. Mind you, he's still able to walk three-five miles a day. So, mostly good and I'm sure Greg's will be too. Good luck with the work schedule too :)
nightsmusic said…
Well, I will try to keep this short after having just returned home from PT on the one week mark of hubs having his left knee replaced this past Monday. Osgood Schlatter when he was a kid after growing almost 5 inches in one year, football (which he was scouted for until he got clipped) motocross, years of abuse of both knees and GM deciding regardless of physical condition during the pandemic, everyone could walk 3/4 of a mile one way to their desks and he was barely walking. The steroid shots no longer worked, the Duralane shots no longer worked, the Ortho we were seeing really didn't want to do the surgery. Hubs could barely walk at this point more than about 75 feet without stopping to rest so we found another doc. He was very nice and said he'd replace hubs right knee all day long but his left was out of this doctor's wheelhouse. Sent us to an Ortho who does revisions on knees that other Orthos have screwed up.

When the doc came out after the surgery, he looked at me and said, "Everything went great! But your husband's knee was much worse than the X-rays showed. It was...a mess." I said, "Is that your medical term?" He said, "It's the only one I have for what I saw."

Hubs started PT a couple hours after the surgery, he's doing great, he's pushing himself just enough, no pain, no gain, in the meantime, he's driving me insane and that's where we're at. Since it's all real time right now, if you have any questions, ask away, but that's why I've been MIA this week. :)

Good luck!
Maria Zannini said…
Mike: I've only ever known one person who was unhappy with his surgery. I think it might've been his surgeon but I don't know all the details.

I took those steroid shots for a while, but in the long run it did me more harm than good. My knee felt so much better that I pushed harder than I should and ended up tearing more of the meniscus.

I learned a hard lesson that day.
Maria Zannini said…
nightmusic: I can well imagine what you're going through having gone through it myself with other surgeries. Caretakers get no recognition for what we do behind the scenes to keep our loved ones cared for.

Your hubby on the other hand sounds like he's a go-getter. That's good for recovery as long as he doesn't overexerts himself (like I tend to do).

I guess my only question right now is how you found your surgeon. Was it from referral or recommendation from friends?

We had a good one, but then he destroyed his career (and in jail) because of inappropriate behavior with patients. So now we're looking again.

nightsmusic said…

We asked our PCP, but we love our PCP and thought he probably wouldn't steer us wrong and really, he didn't. He just didn't know how very bad hub's left knee was. He was not our PCP when we started going to the first Ortho. He was recommended by a friend who had had a very good experience with this doctor. We may have had as well, but my husband is a big guy and while he's always been very active, he's gained a lot of weight and the original Ortho was more concerned with him getting bariatric surgery first before he would do anything about hub's knees. We've had two cousins, my sister in law's BFF and hub's BFF's daughter who have all gone through that surgery and none have had either a decent outcome or long term positive outcomes from it. Two are still always sick from it. One has had the excess skin removal which presented its own problems and has ended up being the wrong decision unfortunately...we weren't interested. He's now doing Wegovy and has lost a lot of weight using that, but the current surgeon told him, if we can't get you moving, you won't lose much weight either so it's a catch 22, which it is. We're very thankful we found him. But I admit, I read the patient reviews too! I'm big on that.

It was also hub's first time ever in the hospital other than a heart cath, he stayed overnight, it's a huge regional medical center near us and everyone from housekeeping to the surgeon was absolutely awesome, so in a year when he has to have the other one replaced, I don't think he'll fear it as much.
Maria Zannini said…
re: ...and everyone from housekeeping to the surgeon was absolutely awesome...

That's my biggest fear since the pandemic. I want to be sure he's absolutely safe. We hadn't been to any of the hospitals near us so it'll be a new experience.

When I start accumulating some recs I'll start reviewing each one to see what others think. That's a good idea.

re: Wegovy
I learn so much from you. :-)
I never heard of that one.
nightsmusic said…


The Wegovy is a multi-step approach. You start with a .5mg injection once a week and work up to a 2.4mg injection to acclimate your body to it. He didn't really lose any weight on the smaller doses, but when he started with the highest dose, he lost almost 20 pounds in less than a month. It's safe, effective and it definitely works. And he's still losing. But the step up to the highest dose changes your appetite and during that time, you start to eat less and you don't have that desire to eat certain things like you used to. I can't explain it, but you just don't have the cravings you used to. It's been great!

I've lost over 30 pounds since the beginning of February, but it's the anti seizure meds I'm taking for my ocular migraines. It's really nice but not one person has noticed. :( My husband says it's because I'm still in winter clothing but I'm not wearing a sweater over my face for heaven sake!!! Oh well...
Maria Zannini said…
nightmusic: LOL! Yeah, take off the coat.