Re: Is 36 to young for basal joint arthroplasty surgery
Sorry to hear you are facing the surgery decision at such a young age. I had my thumb surgery on Dec. 20th. At 5 days post-surgery I had less pain than before, at 7 days none. I went back to teaching after Christmas break. I have been in therapy for 3 1/2 weeks now and have back 100% ROM on the tip of my thumb, almost all on the second joint, full flexion and almost full wrist extension, and will be starting to mobilize the joint that was operated on this week. I will be taking the brace off for two hours on Thursday and increasing that time by two hours each day until I go all day without. I will start to use my thumb for very light activity. In another month I will start strengthening and then I'm done.
While the cast and brace have been inconvenient, it really hasn't been a serious problem. Since it was not my dominant hand I went back to driving at 2 weeks when I got the cast on. Elastic shoe laces took care of the only problem with getting dressed. I have basically done everything I normally do except scrub floors and fold laundry(because my other hand has taken a beating with the extra work).
Right now I am seriously considering having the other thumb done in summer. It is getting to be a problem, and as a teacher I really can't manage without my dominant hand during the school year, so its this summer or wait another year.
You would be extremely foolish if you didn't worry about each and every surgery. I certainly have for every one-and mine have all been successful. In your case, I would expect that having the surgery would mean the end of your current job since you would lose some strength and don't want more hand surgeries in the future. That is a scary proposition I am sure.
No surgery is a piece of cake, but don't be afraid that this is really horrible. It is time consuming to wait as long as the protocol says for each step of recovery, but the delay is to make sure that everything is rock solid, not that it is 12 weeks of misery.
Good luck in your decision making.