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Author Topic: Post Surgery Fever  (Read 12287 times)

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Offline anasta5ia

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Post Surgery Fever
« on: May 26, 2004, 09:22:56 AM »
Hey everyone-

I am just curious.  I am 6 days post-op from my most recent surgery (Rev. TTT, TTA, MPFL recon, lateral retinaculum repair, and patellar tendon repair).  I have also had some complications with my spinal.  Yesterday when I was at the docs for the issues with the spinal, my temp was kinda low....97.2 degrees farenheit.  Then, last night I started feeling kinda icky and my temp was 99.6.  It has been in the 99's all day and right now it is 99.9.  My incision doesn't look too bad.

I was wondering how long I should let the fever go on before I call the doctor.  I don't want to over react, but at the same time I don't want to end up with a major infection.

Any advice?

-Heather G.
Rt. knee-plica resection, LR, 4 TTTs, MPFL repair & 2 MPFL reconstructions
Lt. knee-2 TTTs, & 2 MPFL reconstructions...
Scheduled for bilateral hardware removal, lt. knee TT revision, MPFL recon and LR recon with new wonderful surgeon.
Plus 9 other orthopedic surgeries

Offline FieryMayhem

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Re: Post Surgery Fever
« Reply #1 on: May 26, 2004, 06:24:31 PM »
Heather G.,

Fevers are no fun, but I can only imagine how icky it would feel post-op.  Hopefully you've gotten some sleep since you posted this, has it helped any?  Have you taken tylenol or anything like that to help reduce the fever?  I don't know the 'proper protocol' for monitoring fevers post-op as I've never had to deal with it, but I'd say keep a good eye on it and if you feel at all iffy about it, call your GP or OS and let them know what's going on, maybe they can get it under control.  

Good luck and be sure to take it easy, rest and be good to your body!  I hope you feel better soon!

23 years old
12/00 Scope & LR
01/04 Scope & patella shave
05/04 TTO & then some
09/04 Screw removal

"That which is dreamed can never be lost, can never be undreamed." -Master Li

Offline Leentje

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Re: Post Surgery Fever
« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2004, 07:18:15 PM »
I will say what protocol we follow post surgery (in Celsius ::) easier :P). Will look up the values in Fahrenheit later on if U like.

Up to 7 days post op a temp raise up to 38.5 degrees is normal. Mostly it ranges between 37 and 38°. However if the fever stays 38 degrees without coming down (fe. at night) you have to be cautious. Watch the incision esp for redness and pus. Not only the incision itself but also the close area around it!

Don't get yourself winded up too much, fever after  arthrotomies (esp when hardware is placed) are normal and called resorption fever. It's a way your body reacts to the "new" hardware!

If your not sure about the fever give your OS a buzz!

~H ;)
Bilat patellar malalignment/PFdysplasia
00/06/83 L wrist #
11/12/00 L knee LR + chondroplasty
21/08/02 L knee TTT
02/03/04 L knee stretched PCL
11/09/07 L ankle dislocation/medial avulsion #
25/05/09 L ankle medial avulsion # AGAIN!
05/06/13 R ankle dislocation

Offline Heather M.

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Re: Post Surgery Fever
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2004, 09:17:52 PM »
I was told my doctor wouldn't worry until I had a fever over 101 degrees.  Anything up to that--as long as you keep a scrupulous eye on the wound and any discharge--is expected to be normal.  That's because we all have a range of 'normal' body temps.  If your temp is normally lower than 98.6 degrees F, and you're running 99 on a consistent basis, it may be worth a call to the nurse.  Explain that your temp is normally below the so-called 'normal.'  My body temp is normally around 97.8 or so--if my temp is 'normal' then for me I'm running a bit of a fever.

Does this make any sense?  A little fever (and they consider anything below 100 little) is normal after surgery.  Running a fever at night, night sweats, chills, being hot then freezing cold, aching bones, feeling like you have the flu--these are all danger signs.

It's been my experience that when you have an infection, there really is no doubt at all.  You feel like garbage all over, not just the knee.  You can count your heartbeat in the surgical joint.  And there is definite discharge (even clear discharge of synovial fluid over time is a risk factor, so monitor anything coming out of your knee).

Take care.

« Last Edit: May 26, 2004, 09:18:44 PM by hmaxwell »
Scope #1: LR, part. menisectomy w/cyst, chondroplasty
#2-#5: Lysis of adhesions/scar tissue, AIR, patellar tendon debridement, infections, MUA, insufflation
#6: IT band release / Z-Plasty, synovectomy, LOA/AIR, chondroplasty
2006 Arthrofibrosis, patella baja

Offline Emily

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Re: Post Surgery Fever
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2004, 06:13:19 AM »

Just wanted to chime in... I just looked back at my discharge instructions, and mine also say a "low grade" fever is normal after surgery...

I hope you're feeling better! Haha if not I may have to  sing to you again!

Right Knee- 10-14-03- LR, TTO, Scope, Plica excision
               4-20-04- Scope, screw removal, scar tissue clean up

Left knee- subluxing, maltracking & malaligned-not ready to start treatmet..

Offline Holly

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Re: Post Surgery Fever
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2004, 04:29:07 PM »
Hi Heather:

When I had my most recent surgery (double osteotomy - tibia and femur right leg), I was discharged after 2 days even though my temperature was 100.5 (farenheit).  During my stay it had gone as high as 101.9 and they said they wouldn't discharge me until it was below 101, but after that it was O.K., because some rise in temperature was considered normal due to the hardware.  Like everyone here said, as long as the incision is not purpurating (oozing), does not look unusually red, if you don't have "flu-like" feelings, it should be O.K.

However, as ALWAYS, if you're unsure CALL YOUR DOCTOR!!  You paid for the guy...let him set your mind at ease. ;)

We checked my temperature every morning and every night for 3 days after I got home.  It never got higher than 101, and eventually came down to my normal (also around 97.5).

Take very good care of yourself, kiddo.  Your body has been through a tremendous assault and you need rest, food, sleep and lots of TLC!  We're thinking of you and wishing you the speediest of recoveries! ;D


1998 run over by car;Rt knee lat menisc/med menisc tear, ACL/MCL tear, patella frx, tib frx, femur frx, 4 scopes repr menisc/repr lig/debride pat, open MCL rpr, dbl osteot3/04;MUA,lysis6/04;scope10/04

Offline anasta5ia

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Re: Post Surgery Fever
« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2004, 03:05:17 AM »
Thanks everyone for your advice!! ;D

It looks like my temperature has pretty much stabilized right around 99.6.  My regular temp. is around 97.6, so it is still a fever for me, but oh well.

My incision looks good (you can see the pics of it if you want.....the ones from this surgery are under TTT #5 in my yahoo photo album at  I wasn't really supposed to undo the dressing, but considering my fever and stuff I figured that I had better take a look.

With my temp as it is, I am thinking that it is probably due to my ongoing appendix issues as when I was having the appendix issues before my temp. was exactly the same as it is now.

Thanks again for all your advice and support, I really do appreciate it.

Heather G.
Rt. knee-plica resection, LR, 4 TTTs, MPFL repair & 2 MPFL reconstructions
Lt. knee-2 TTTs, & 2 MPFL reconstructions...
Scheduled for bilateral hardware removal, lt. knee TT revision, MPFL recon and LR recon with new wonderful surgeon.
Plus 9 other orthopedic surgeries

Offline Linds

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Re: Post Surgery Fever
« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2004, 04:32:13 AM »
Hey Heather, Wow..those pics are...extrordinary. ::) Yuckers... but I see you've got a handy dandy Polar care, they are the best. :D I love mine so much. I use it even when I'm not recovering from knee surgery. ;D

I'm glad that the incisions are looking good etc, and that the fever wasn't due to an infection, cause that would just be no fun. You konw really for the amount of stuff they did to your knee, it really looks quite good. My poort leg after my LR surgery was just black and BLue, it was the ugliest thing i've ever seen. Lol..

Take care and I wish you continued success in your recovery.
HUGs and hope
1997 Scope RK
2002 LR RK
2002 Scope and hematoma evac RK
2004 LR LK
May 06 Fall from Horse, partial ACL tear and meniscus injury, Tibial plateau injury
2007 Scope, Plica Excision and Debride LK
2009/2010- Possibly Ankylosing Spondylitis?