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  • Endoscopic minimally invasive thumb arthroscopy

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    Old 12-05-2015, 01:18 AM   #1
    tarzanoftheapes
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    Endoscopic minimally invasive thumb arthroscopy

    I'd like to find out if there are any others on this message board who've had this surgery:
    On October 21 of this year (2015), I had minimally invasive procedure done to the thumb joint of my right hand. I've had osteoarthritis in both of my thumb joints for many years, and the joints are down to bone-on-bone. It hurts even to just sign my name or write anything with a pencil, or even turn the key to open the door to my house.

    Anyway, more about the surgery:
    To be clear, this is NOT the procedure where they open up your hand and remove the entire bone. -Instead, they make two very small incisions (which later almost look like snakebite wounds) and they use a special tool to remove enough of the surface of the two bones that are touching each other, to make more room between them. Then they injected something called BioDRestore, which is described as an amniotic stem-cell fluid, to help foster growth of cartilage-like material between the bones.

    They initially told me the recovery usually takes 4-6 weeks. It's been at least 6 weeks, and I still don't feel anywhere remotely close to being able to return to full-duty at work. My job normally involves some very physically demanding work, but for now I have to do light duty work, sitting at a computer using a keyboard and mouse. I need to recover soon, that's why I chose this minimally invasive procedure over the traditional one. I'm very frustrated right now. Even after 6 weeks, I still have tremendous pain even just trying to push the on-off button on my electric toothbrush. When I start my car, I have to turn the key using my index and middle finger. I can type this internet post okay, but try to write something with a pen or pencil, even just sign my name? Forgettaboutit!

    At the physical therapy clinic, there are other patients who've had the same procedure done, but they're mostly still recovering like me, so I haven't been able to really get a long-term perspective of someone who's gone through the entire recovery process and can really vouch for the procedure. One guy tells me his thumb is getting better, but when I ask him more specific questions, he admits there are still a lot of things he still can't do with his thumb. Also, he's a senior citizen, and I'm only 50, so his idea of a full recovery might be different from mine. I'm a TV cameraman, and my regular job involves carrying 50 lbs. of equipment around, and pulling cables, and tightening and loosening tripod legs, and being very agile when necessary. Being able to pick up and hold a cup of coffee in the morning is nice, but I need to be able to do a lot more than that to consider this surgery a success. The idea was to have less pain and be able to do more, not to have more pain and be able to do less. This could potentially ruin my whole career if I can't recover properly from this, so naturally I'm worried right now.

    Anyone else here had this procedure who can give me some perspective on it?

     
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    Old 05-03-2016, 03:56 PM   #2
    Fire4Effect
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    Re: Endoscopic minimally invasive thumb arthroscopy

    How are you coming along with your recovery? I would like to learn more about the procedure you had.

     
    Old 08-01-2016, 09:14 AM   #3
    tarzanoftheapes
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    Re: Endoscopic minimally invasive thumb arthroscopy

    9 months post-op, I've been back to work, and my surgery thumb (right) works better than my non-surgery (left) thumb, which is getting worse, probably because I used it more over the past 9 months. Right thumb is more functional than it was pre-op, but still not quite the magic cure I had been hoping for. Sometimes I wake up on the morning and the surgery thumb is very stiff and I have to move it around a bit to get it loosened up.

     
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