Hi, I will shortly be going in for TKR, and just today heard about Regional Anesthesia, I believe it's a spinal block, has anyone had this, and is it a good way to go. Any input would be much appreciated.
I've had a regional block with all 10 of my knee surgeries, it's pretty standard. It's not a spinal. They block the nerves in your thigh area of your leg, and it numbs your knee. They leave a port in so that they can re-medicate the area and keep it numb while you're in the hospital. they take the port out when you go home. The only downfall is you have to be very carefull when getting up, because your whole leg is numb.
For a TKR you would want general anesthesia. They will be doing a lot of leg manipulation, bone cutting, etc that would be too much for you to experience with regional anesthesia. They can use regional anesthesia when they won't be doing too much bone cutting or movement of the leg. With regional anesthesia only you are awake (or semi awake) for the entire process and don't feel pain but feel the tugging, movement, hear the instruments (bone cutting) etc.
I had a spinal with all my surgeries (except hip arthroscopy) including TKA. I wouldn't do it any other way. I think it will depend on your own feeling about what you want. I wanted to be awake. Even if you have a spinal you do not have to be "awake". They will give you something in your IV so you will "sleep" through it if you don't want to know what is going on.
I was not uncomfortable at all during TKA. I was not bothered by the sounds. I teasing say it was like being on the construction site at a new house. I was able to communicate with my OS and he was able to let me know what was going on. My OS has always prefered spinals. It is safer than general, Recovery is quicker. You don't have to worry about pain for at least 4 hours. By that time your pain meds will be working full speed.
Hi, thank you so much for your input, sounds good and bad, the thought of hearing and feeling anything is scary, but the thought of no other part of my system not being affected by the general anesthesia is a good thing i think, as I'm truly shaky about the whole thing.
If you do not want any other part of your body affected and you want total pain control during the surgery, you want a spinal. Talk to your OS. I have never found an OS that recommended general if you had a choice of a spinal or general. A spinal has a bad reputation. Now you do not have to lay on your back for a day. All anesthesia can have complications but the spinal has fewer and they can be controlled much easier.
That's too bad. I'm not sure what he had to do, maybe it was just his preferred position. When I have had arthoroscopy they have always had to move the knee back and forth. From the thigh up it was strapped to some sort of leg brace so I don't think it could possibly move it. I know I couldn't possibly move the part below the spinal.