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Offline keeperkid24

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« on: October 19, 2004, 03:56:39 AM »
hi everyone! i'm a new member on this board, but i've been reading posts for awhile, and want to thank everyone for all of the info. i hate to ask for info/advice without making a contribution to the board, but i am concerned about my upcoming surgery.

i will be going in for my fourth knee surgery in NOvember (TTT-right knee). I've had three surgeries on my other knee, which resulted in RSD, so now my pain clinic doc says ill need to have an epidural for three days following the surgery. i know that i need to have the TTT, and that i need to avoid the spread of my RSD, but i am very worried about this, and i am looking for any info about epidurals for the knees. i dont know much other than the basic info about what an epidural is. thanks so much for any replies.
01/03-LR (left); 09/03-TTT, medial reefing, plica excision, LR (left); 02/04-screws out; 11/04-TTT, LR, medial reefing, plica excision, etc. (right); 08/05-screws out (right) to reveal a fracture in the tuberosity
Also have severe RSD, EDS, and soo many allergies

Offline dm

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Re: epidural???
« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2004, 05:35:52 AM »
With an epidural, what it's basically doing is putting all the nerves from the point of application in your back on down to sleep. So, BOTH legs will not feel anything - my guess is from lower belly or waist on down, and you will probably be stuck in bed until they discontinue it.

When I had an epidural for my c-section, once they did the epidural, that was it, no more getting up. So, figure on getting a catheter for handling #1, since its possible that you wont feel needing to go.

I hope this helps a little, and I know the others who've had epidurals specifically for knee ops will chime in.
multiple arthroscopies 2/00,3/01,6/01,1/03, 12/07,10/10. chondromalacia, severe medial joint space narrowing following 3 partial menisectomies, chronic pain problems, kneecap problems, OCD lesion, failed mfx.

Offline keeperkid24

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Re: epidural???
« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2004, 05:47:15 AM »
well, thats what i figured, in terms of being totally numb and having a catheter, but my doctor said id be able to get up to use the bathroom??? i was surprised, and i wasnt sure if there was some way they could do that or something. also, i forgot to ask about any side effects of the epidural. thanks for the reply!
01/03-LR (left); 09/03-TTT, medial reefing, plica excision, LR (left); 02/04-screws out; 11/04-TTT, LR, medial reefing, plica excision, etc. (right); 08/05-screws out (right) to reveal a fracture in the tuberosity
Also have severe RSD, EDS, and soo many allergies


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Re: epidural???
« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2004, 05:59:04 AM »
My husband had an osteotomy in May and had an epidural.  They way they angled the insert made   it so only the operated knee was numb. He didn't need a cath and only had a little bit of a problem going to the bathroom he felt the urge, but just had to push the bladder muscle to work. They didn't let him get up too much though so the insert wouldn't come out (He did get up a little to go from the bed to the chair with the nurse helping to make sure that the insert didn't come out of the back). Hopefully yours will be the same.
Best of luck to you!!! :)

Offline cat

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Re: epidural???
« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2004, 06:13:00 AM »
We were concerned about RSD issues when I had my TTT. The game plan was for my pain level to not get above a 3. I had a spinal for the surgery and epidural for pain relief afterwards. (Dont' worry, there was just the one stick.) It was put in my back right before surgery and afterwards I didn't even notice it. I was mostly painfree but able to get up to use the bathroom. It  did make me get sick though and I tossed my cookies quite a few times. :P If you have any more questions, just ask.

"Miserable malalignment"
 Lateral release, medial reefing, VMO advancement, and TTT-  3/2/04
Screw removal- 5/24/05
Cortisone injection to pes anserine- 7/27/05
Femoral derotation osteotomy, TTT revision- 10/18/07

Offline Sharon

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Re: epidural???
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2004, 06:30:46 AM »

I had an epidural for my TTT revision as an alternative to a morphine pump as I'm extremely sensitive to morphine(it gives me hallucinations.) I also had the epidural for during my surgery although I was heavily sedated as well. They put it in before the surgery when I was already sedated so I didn't feel anything. Mine was kept in the night of the surgery and until about 2 hours before I went home which was the day after surgery. During that time I did have to have a catheter because they told me that I wouldn't be able to feel when I had to use the bathroom. But don't worry about the catheter-it wasn't as bad as I had thought it was going to be. I was able to get out of bed with the epidural in but they only let me get up once when PT came in to see me the day after my surgery. I wasn't up for too long that time as my blood sugar was really low from them not giving me any real food and I almost passed out after walking just a few feet. After that the next time I got out of bed was when they were letting me get ready to go home. But I think that if you're going to be in the hospital for 3 days with the epidural they're going to let you out of bed more than I was allowed. I have to say that it really worked well for pain control. I just pressed the little button when I needed to and it worked really quickly. It was kind of wierd because you can feel a kind of cold sensation when the meds first go into your back. But it worked really well and I'd have it again if I decide to have another surgery, which I'm in the process of deciding now. If you have any other questions feel free to ask.

Left knee:
LR-5/99 & 9/01
Distal realignment and LR 7/02
TTT revision 6/03
screw removal/MUA 10/03
d/x with severe patella baja
7/05 patellar tendon replacement w/piece of quad tendon
4/07 OATS

Offline Leentje

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Re: epidural???
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2004, 04:27:20 PM »
We use epidurals in patients who had TKR surgery. They do feel they legs but they don't feel pain. If the meds are well dosed one should be able to get up and sit in a chair however we only let patients do that 2ce a day and with help of nurses. All people who have an epidural have a catheter although it is not strictly necessary, it is possibly that you won't feel that you have to urinate or that you can't empty your bladder. But it all depends.

If it is possible ask an appt with the anesthetist and tell him your conserns.

Good luck!
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 goose

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Re: epidural???
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2004, 06:55:27 PM »

I had a epidural for one of my surgeries, due to concerns over putting me under due to my asthma.  They sedated me prior to giving me the needle, so I was pretty much out of it during the whole thing.

Recovering from the epi was another story. I felt a lot of "pressure" or "cramping" in my lower back as it was wearing off. I found it very had to  get comfortable, with my knee all wrapped up and back killing me.  The pins and needles drove me nuts! I agree with everyone else, definately ask about the catheter...I didn't have one and it is definately something you should look into, unpleaseant as it sounds.  But for my next surgery (TTT on the 11th) I'm having general, I prefer it....but once I have a kid....bring on the epi!  :)

Hope this helps. Good Luck
RK-LR 1988
RK-LR 1999, chondromalacia, torn cartlidge removed, debridement
LK-LR 2002, chondromalacia
LK 11/2004 diagonstic scope, lesion removed, debridement
LK-TTT 12/8/2004