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Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) (CRPS) Message Board

Knee replacement surgery

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Old 03-25-2004, 02:47 PM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 7
donnelly49 HB User
Knee replacement surgery

Worker's Compensation has approved the surgery to replace my knee, after 8 years of fighting. I do not want to have the surgery because of the concerns with RSD, but sometimes it is hard to convince the powers that be that the trade off is not worth the risk. Not only do I have concerns with RSD, but I also have a clotting problem after surgery, and last time I just had a scope on my knee, I passed one into my lung, and spent another 10 days in the hospital, and I am told I was lucky to have survived.

Of course they (wc) walked into court with this approval the day of my hearing for total disability and now this has probably held up the judge's decision for who knows how long. We are awaiting a letter from my ortho after he researchs RSD and knee replacements. question(s) to the group is this. Has anyone gone through such a complex operation? Has anyone considered it, but decided not to because of RSD? Has anyone been told my an M.D. not to have surgery of this degree because of RSD? If anyone has had a major surgery, what precautions where taken for your RSD?

If I have not asked a question that is relevant to your situation, and/or you just want to comment, I welcome any and all idea, comments, opinions, etc.

Sorry that this is so long, but it is quite a complex situation.


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Old 03-25-2004, 06:57 PM   #2
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Join Date: May 2002
Location: NY
Posts: 3,185
sharon1030 HB User
Smile Re: Knee replacement surgery

Hi Susan,

I have had many surgeries since the RSD diagnosis--many knee surgeries, a sympathectomy, shoulder and hip surgery and then a tonsillectomy. The precautions taken before and during my knee and hip surgeries were they put in an epidural and left it in for a few days after surgery. That's supposed to keep the RSD as quiet as possible. The thing I would be extremely worried about is your problem with clotting. That's scary! In my opinion, that's scarier than the RSD worsening. Are you saying that because WC approved the replacement, they'll make your life hell if you don't go for it? I don't know much about WC. You don't absolutely HAVE to have the surgery, right? Good luck with your decision.


Old 03-25-2004, 10:08 PM   #3
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Durango, Colorado
Posts: 1,443
Jewel2 HB User
Re: Knee replacement surgery

Hi Susan,
I had my gall bladder removed two months ago. I had an epidural in addition to the general anesthesia and the surgeon numbed each layer he cut through with lidocaine. It worked like a charm. I met with the anesthesiologist the day before my surgery to completely discuss what would happen. The doctors also instructed the nurses to not cuff my RSD arm or put the oxygen sensor on my bad hand. They also had me on demerol for several days afterwards whether I thought I needed it or not. They all took my RSD very seriously. I had a slight flare in my hand the first night, but it settled down by the next day.

Best wishes,

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