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Old 09-11-08, 06:06 AM   #1
tsl
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Study shows arthritic knee surgery not helpful

"Common surgery doesn’t relieve arthritic knee pain more than drugs and physio, University of Western Ontario researchers found…"

http://healthzone.ca/health/article/496891

I've spouted off here several times about my father's knee surgeon and how multiple surgeries never helped him, and in fact, made things worse over time.

Perhaps it's not the surgeon, but rather, the procedure that's at fault.
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Old 09-11-08, 08:30 AM   #2
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I didn't go and read the article. What is the recommended solution for arthritic knee?
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Old 09-11-08, 08:37 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by jim p View Post
I didn't go and read the article. What is the recommended solution for arthritic knee?

Ice, Heat and lots of NSAIDS.
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Old 09-11-08, 09:23 AM   #4
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Misleading subject line to be sure.

Surgery is still the choice and best therapy for some.

However, it has been known for a long time that physical therapy and exercise helps the vast majority of people.

Are some surgeons knife happy? Sure. Just as some are reasonable and prudent.

That's why second opinions and research are so important.

I've had 6 surgeries on my knee, and wouldn't be walking without them. But, my daily 42 mile loop keeps it workin!

Last edited by Wanderer; 09-11-08 at 06:59 PM.
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Old 09-11-08, 10:10 AM   #5
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ok I can speak to my experiences and I have been through most procedures short of double knee relacement.

- both knees have been "scoped" and torn cartilage cut away. The heal time for me was at least 6 months each time. There was some relief but eventually the osteoarthritis came back.
- just completed in July the Synvisc injections in both knees (series of injections over 3 weeks). Too early to really tell but I still have unacceptable knee pain.
- I take a lot of inflamatory meds (OTC and Rx) to help control
- however the biggest and nearly immediate relief are cortisone injections (just got both knees again shot up yesterday). There is a big debate on how often you can take these. My Ortho surgeon will limit me to about every 2-3 months. Some will say only 3 per year or some especially treating sports people will give them weekly (I am told - but not good for you because the tissue will eventually start to break down).

So, if I can stay away from knee replacement by popping pills and shooting up my knees periodically I will take that route.
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Old 09-11-08, 11:12 AM   #6
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Since we are talking knees, maybe this isn't off topic. Can anyone comment on riding a bike after knee replacement? My brother and mother have both had replacements. Their recovery, at least as far as walking was concerned, was very quick and they both wondered why they waited so long to have this done. They were walking in the hospital hall the day after the surgery. By the way, mom is 95 and brother is 73 and neither rides a bike. We all enjoy the gift of arthritis.
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Old 09-11-08, 02:16 PM   #7
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Great question. I would like to know as well. How long after replacement should you expect to be back in the saddle?
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Old 09-11-08, 05:28 PM   #8
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I would think it would depend on the type of replacement they put in. There's supposedly a new one that you can go running on with no p[roblems. Follow the advice of your physical therapist.
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Old 09-11-08, 06:34 PM   #9
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It's not a very well-written article. People should wait for the original NEJMAG paper to come out.

In particular it is addressing arthroscopic surgery done for pain control.

It is not addressing total knee replacement. It is not addressing arthroscopy performed to increase the functional status of the knee. It is only addressing arthroscopic surgery performed for pain control.

I look forward to informed debate amongst people who are knowledgeable about the procedure.

Given the nature of degenerative joint disease, I can't say that the findings are really surprising.
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Old 09-12-08, 12:28 PM   #10
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If you have any cartilage left, visco-supplimentation is a good way to go. Product like Synvisc are essentially HA gel and have been shown to be pretty effective for a lot longer than steroids. The surgery rarely helps, but sometimes does, so it keeps getting done.
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