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Wrist Replacement Surgery

dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
edited 7. Jul 2011, 09:10 in Living with Arthritis archive
Hi peeps,

Had my pre op assessment today and am having the wrist replacement surgery on 7th June.

Had a long chat with the ortho surgeon and he explained in more detail what to expect. I had gone there with lots of questions so it was good he took the time to go over it all with me. :wink:

Over and above doing the wrist replacement he said he will be 're-aligning' the other bones in the hand and taking tendons from one side and putting them on the other side to 'balance' things up (similar to wheel alignment he tells me).

He also said that I need an extra 'bit' (technical this eh? :lol: ) of hardware for the joint between the radius and the ulnar as that is badly eroded too.....reassuringly (not) he said he has not performed a total wrist replacement with this additional radio/ulnar prosthesis and neither has anyone else in his team....... so he's looking forward to doing it. :shock:

the wrist replacement is prone to dislocation but there is a new prosthesis which they hope (and me!) will have a better success rate. It's a delicate op due to the structures in the hand and will need splinting for several weeks/ months as there is little muscle to hold it all in place while it heals.

we covered the usual things that could happen and what he could do if they did. :roll:

can't say I don't know now what to expect can I?.....and after all that I was still happy to sign the permission!

Iris x (guinea pig) :lol:
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Comments

  • speedalongspeedalong Posts: 3,347
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Iris - guinea pig,

    How fab to speak to the surgeon at your pre-op and not just the nurse like me (wouldn't have minded if she could answer my questions!!)

    So you have a date - that is good news- just over a month away, that's good you've been waiting for op haven't you.

    At least with surgeon finding your case/op fascinating - you know he is going to take lots of time and care getting it right - he will want to be able to boast about/write a paper on it etc

    Because he is going to relign the hand bones as well, does that mean your whole hand will be splinted or just your wrist ... what I mean is, after a wrist fracture starts to heel, peeps can use their hand functionally as much as the cast allows - will that be the case with you?

    So your pre-op prep will be starting soon too.

    Speedalong
    I have had OA since mid twenties. It affects my hips and knees. I had a THR on the left aged 30 and now have a resurface-replacement on the right - done May 2010.
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    speedalong wrote:
    Hi Iris - guinea pig,

    Because he is going to relign the hand bones as well, does that mean your whole hand will be splinted or just your wrist ... what I mean is, after a wrist fracture starts to heel, peeps can use their hand functionally as much as the cast allows - will that be the case with you?

    So your pre-op prep will be starting soon too.

    Speedalong

    Hi speedalong,

    I didn't ask but imagine the hand and wrist being completely immobilised but most of the fingers free. Can't see me being able to do very much with the fingers initially apart from trying to clench and unclench them as I did with the fusion to keep the circulation going and reduce the swelling....after that I don't really know although the surgeon said the rehab takes months and I will not be able to risk damaging it!. I've to see him again a week before the op so I will ask more then.

    The surgeon is lovely...pity he's married and about twenty years my junior! :wink:

    I'm now starting to think about preparations too and will have to start practising some method of managing all the self care stuff with the one fused hand which also needs more surgery and has poor grip......... the assessment nurse is referring me to OT so that should help.

    Your surgery is next week... how are you feeling about it and is everything now in place for S? hope all goes smoothly for you too.

    Iris x

    e050.gif
  • dreamdaisydreamdaisy Posts: 31,567 ✭✭✭
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Surgeons love to broaden their knowledge. Funny bunch of people, cutting others open, fiddling about and stitching them up again, but if it works....... surely it will mean less (or no?) pain. That can only be good. It will seem a long journey once you start, but it will be worth it. And he's a babe to boot?! Fab-u-lous. I wish you well. Will note the date and send you best wishes then. Take care. Dreamdaisy.
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thanks dreamdaisy!

    surgeons are definitely a cut above the rest :lol::lol::lol::lol:
    you are right though...it is a funny trade to be in, slicing and dicing...and they do obsess about it I've noticed.
    When I had the wrist fusion last year by a different surgeon the current one and his team kept saying what a beautiful fusion it was on x ray. :? funny lot! ...I was just pleased to know one bit of me is considered beautiful...even though it can't be seen :lol:

    The TWR should make a huge difference to the pain and also give me some movement back..great!

    thanks for your good wishes too xx

    Iris x
  • josiecjosiec Posts: 386
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Iris the guineapig! :lol: (like the pic-what's the technical word??!!) I do hope all goes well for you, as others have said, you know he'll want to do a really good job! Funny aren't they with medical things - the nurse who took my dressings off said my scar was beautiful - I was thinking of other words at the time!! :shock: ) All best wishes, Josie :wink:
  • ritwrenritwren Posts: 928
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Iris it's great news you've gotten your date for the op. It all sounds really complicated but it seems like your surgeon is looking forward to it. They are a funny bunch those surgeons :D Hopefully OT will be able to advise you on how you're going to manage afterwards, would you be able to get some kind of home helper in? Do you know how long you'll be in hospital? The recovery period sounds long but at least if you're not in pain anymore it will all be worth it. It's good you have another appointment before the op so you will get another chance to ask any questions you need to.
    Tomorrow is the start of May, where is the time going to this year? It'll be June before you know it. Take good care, big hugs, rita :)
  • skezierskezier Posts: 12,150
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi e050.gif ,

    Hey it sounds ok doesn't it? Ortho's are much better than thy used to be all round really :wink:

    Hey will the extra bit mean more movement and less pain? Sorry Iris that must have been a bit less reassuring but they will take good care to get it right and well a ((((( ))))) and a bowl of carrots Mrs Forum e050.gif ....... :lol::lol: Cris xx
    g045.gifg045.gifg045.gif
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    josiec wrote:
    the nurse who took my dressings off said my scar was beautiful - I was thinking of other words at the time!! :shock: ) All best wishes, Josie :wink:

    Hi Josie :D

    They are a funny bunch.......what we see as disfiguring they see as a thing of beauty. mad isn't it :wink:

    thanks for the good wishes too Josie...how are you btw?

    Iris x e050.gif
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    ritwren wrote:
    would you be able to get some kind of home helper in? Do you know how long you'll be in hospital? The recovery period sounds long but at least if you're not in pain anymore it will all be worth it. :)

    Hi Rita!

    where have you been :?: great to see you posting. :D

    I know you have probs with your hands too so I hope they aren't giving you too much pain just now?

    I think, yes, the OT will look at what I need for after the op....even give me some advice or aids to help with my one limited hand would be good. I've already started getting the house sorted....laminate flooring, clearing out etc...so everything will be as organised as I can make it and I'm going to practise showering and dressing with using just the fused hand...that should be funny! and gawd knows what the hair will be like!

    The surgeon said I will find this more difficult to recover from compared to the fusion as there's more arther damage in other joints so I'm not as physically able as I was even a year ago......but no matter what, it will definitely be worth it. ! (at least he didn't say 'and you're a year older' ha ha)

    I'll go in early on 7th and have the op that day, then be shuffled up to ortho ward. He said one night definitely but expect two nights as he wants to make sure it's ok with the 'articulating radioulnar ' addition. (I know what that looks like because I saw the op on youtube in a mad moment....not one of my better decisions!)

    and yes, it will be so good to get rid of some of the pain. :mrgreen:

    Iris xxxx
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    skezier wrote:
    Hey it sounds ok doesn't it? Ortho's are much better than thy used to be all round really :wink:

    Hey will the extra bit mean more movement and less pain? .......and a bowl of carrots Cris xx

    Very funny Cris .....bowl of carrots! :lol::lol:

    The ortho is great and it all does sound OK...just need to get my head round it and I'll be fine.

    He has included me in all the decisions about the surgery...even went over the xrays for this wrist and showed me the 'before and after' of the other wrist fusion. It's fascinating and I can understand why the surgeons take such pride in their work.
    The extra bit should give me more movement and less pain; if I don't have it done then it will just get worse and eventually they'd have to open the wrist up again so it makes sense.

    The ortho laughed when I pulled out my list of questions so he's a good man!

    changed days from other consultants I've met (and you've met too)

    e050.gif


    xxxxxxx
  • ironicironic Posts: 2,386
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Iris, Just to say hope everything goes well for you. Sounds as if you will be having some fun and games practicing with one hand. Sorry I dont know about the op your having so not much help there.

    Could be interesting hair do days though. Hope the neck is a bit better. Sending Hugs. Lv, Ix
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thanks I :D

    It is a help having support from you and other peeps here...I haven't met anyone who has had this op, hence the forum 'guinea pig' title. There aren't many statistics on it either and ortho man said it is not a common op.

    'interesting' hair do is an understatement! I will probably end up looking like Stig of the dump. :lol::lol:

    The arther in my neck is still bothersome and the orthos had a look at it yesterday......he said that I'm obviously trying to keep him in a job. :lol:
    I'm getting another IM steroid jab next week at rheummy, which will be 6 weeks since the last one, so hopefully that will help settle things down for the op...they've been great too so I've nothing to complain about!

    thanks again I....lol

    Iris xx

    e050.gif
  • lindalegslindalegs Posts: 5,369
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Iris, e050.gif

    You see when I appointed you Forum guinea pig I didn't realise you were going to be the surgeon's guinea pig too :shock: If you start sprouting hair in unusual places or whistling when you should be speaking ......don't blame me :shock:

    I sincerely hope all goes well and shall look forward to following your progress.

    May I suggest you just don't bother dressing after the op .....afterall it will be summer and I'm sure your neighbours will be delighted ....it'll be one less worry for you :wink:

    Luv Legs :lol::lol:
    Love, Legs x
    'Make a life out of what you have, not what you're missing'
  • greengrassgreengrass Posts: 10
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    That's great news Iris, and great you were able to ask questions! Very interesting to read all the details you gave. Hope it oes well. Greengrass
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    greengrass wrote:
    That's great news Iris, and great you were able to ask questions! Very interesting to read all the details you gave. Hope it oes well. Greengrass

    thanks greengrass and nice to meet you. :D

    Talking about the op on the forum is helping me to get it into perspective.....other than that I'd be like a headless chicken (which is far worse than being the forum guinea pig :lol: )

    kidding aside the forum is what keeps me sane.....the support from the great peeps here...and the laughs too... are second to none!

    hope you will post lots so we can get to know you too.

    Iris xx
  • woodbonwoodbon Posts: 4,969
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi, Glad you'r going to have your op soon. I have been laughing at the way the surgeon explained things to you. He sounds a nice, relaxed, layed back person and they often are the best doctors. The're confident and skilled so don't worry about what they have to do. I'd rather have someone like that operate on me than a doctor who looked scared of ME. :lol:

    Good luck for the op and we're looking forward to hearing all the details! :D Lots of love Sue
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    lindalegs wrote:
    Hi Iris,
    You see when I appointed you Forum guinea pig I didn't realise you were going to be the surgeon's guinea pig too :shock: If you start sprouting hair in unusual places or whistling when you should be speaking ......don't blame me :shock:

    May I suggest you just don't bother dressing after the op .....afterall it will be summer and I'm sure your neighbours will be delighted ....it'll be one less worry for you :wink:

    Luv Legs :lol::lol:

    Oh Linda...you did make me laugh. :lol::lol::lol:

    Yes you are responsible for first making me into the forum guinea pig and the orthos's just following your lead. :wink:

    I have noticed a recent tendency to whistling now you come to mention it....
    and if I do start sprouting hair in unusual places I will know exactly who to blame. ha ha!

    Not dressing after the op is an option I hadn't considered but I think the neighbour's would go into shock at the sight. :shock: :shock:

    thanks for your good wishes....will keep you posted!

    need to go now..there's some grass needs nibbling..mmm yummy

    e050.gif
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    woodbon wrote:
    Hi, Glad you'r going to have your op soon. I have been laughing at the way the surgeon explained things to you. He sounds a nice, relaxed, layed back person and they often are the best doctors. The're confident and skilled so don't worry about what they have to do. I'd rather have someone like that operate on me than a doctor who looked scared of ME. :lol:

    Good luck for the op and we're looking forward to hearing all the details! :D Lots of love Sue

    Thanks Sue!

    The surgeon is just the nicest man...very laid back as you described, confident and very funny... when he talked to me about doing a total wrist replacement rather than another fusion he said.... 'it would be better for you to still be able to wipe your bum'. :oops: now that's straight talking!

    He's supposedly one of the top hand surgeons in Scotland so I'm very lucky to be seeing him and although a tad nervous of hearing about the complexity of the op yesterday I do feel as though I'm in a safe pair of hands (pardon the pun)

    Thanks for the 'good luck' wishes too...I'm saving them all up to take in with me. :D

    Iris x
  • ladypealadypea Posts: 25
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Iris

    Just wanting to also wish you good luck with the operation.

    It's great that you have managed to get all your questions answered by the consultant & co. This must put you in good stead for when the op day arrives.

    Looking forward to the gory details, just in case I need to go down that path in the future, as my wrists are the worst arthur joints :lol:

    Ladypea
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    ladypea wrote:
    Hi Iris
    Looking forward to the gory details, just in case I need to go down that path in the future, as my wrists are the worst arthur joints :lol:
    Ladypea

    Hi ladypea!
    thanks for the good luck wishes and I will be sure to let you know every gory detail!! :D

    Having hands that don't work and are constantly painful affects everything we do doesn't it, so I am looking forward to the op and being able to have my right hand working again.

    the fusion on the left wrist was great and helped enormously with the pain (and I would recommend it) but unfortunately arther got up to his dirty tricks and I need more surgery again on that hand & fingers .... but it'll have to wait until a year after the TWR.

    I have a very helpful surgeon...although I was only attending him for the left fusion, when I told him in November last year that the right wrist was bothering me he didn't ask me to be re referred...just had xrays done there and then had a look at them and then suggested I think about a TWR.....now 6mths later I'm having the op; his compassion bowls me over.

    what type of arther do you have? has anyone discussed surgery options or is it too soon to be thinking along those lines...

    really nice to meet you ladypea...hope you are enjoying being part of this forum family. :wink:

    Iris x
  • page35page35 Posts: 1,081
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Iris
    All the best for the op, i too have problems with wrists and hands (although hopefuly along way off from surgery on them) and am finding this very interesting.
    it is good to know that this can be done and i too look forward to hearing how you get on.
    best wishes
    sharon
  • marion1952marion1952 Posts: 996
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello Iris

    I am very interested in this topic as I had never heard of TWR! Sounds like you have an excellent surgeon and how great that you don't have to wait very long to have it done..

    I see you are having a holiday in the Western Isles before the op.. I am jealous.. I would love to see more of Scotland ... my daughter was at Stirling University for 4 years - she graduated last year.. It is such a beautiful country .. she still misses being there..

    Best wishes

    Marion
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Marion! Hi Sharon!
    thanks so much for your good wishes.. :D I hadn't heard of total wrist replacement either until I saw the ortho...and still haven't spoken with anyone who has....there is little by way of statistics either as it is not a commonly done op yet :wink:

    I'm happy to share the experience with peeps on the forum so that the information on what is available is 'out there'. The more info we can gather..the more choices we have.

    I consider surgery as a positive option for me. and with you having arther in the hands you'll know too how restricting and painful it is!

    My surgeon and his team are all very pro active and have encouraged me to see surgery as part of my treatment rather than as a 'last resort'...I think that's been very helpful advice for me.

    It's worth knowing that there are 'windows of opportunity' for fusions and this type of surgery; there are peeps on the forum who have not had surgical options put to them and now cannot be considered as the bones have already fused themselves....

    Hope your arther is under control and that you won't need surgery .......but if you do I hope you have a good rheummy and get access to all the right treatments that suit you too.
    Iris x

    ps. Marion...the Western Isles is stunning...well worth a trip using the 'island hopscotch' cal mac ticket...that way you get to see the whole chain of islands!
  • ladypealadypea Posts: 25
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hiya Iris

    I have RA and am waiting for my first rheumy appointment. So it's early days for me but I find the fact that they can do these type of ops very encouraging for us arther sufferers.

    BTW I'm loving this forum :)
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    ladypea wrote:
    Hiya Iris

    I have RA and am waiting for my first rheumy appointment. So it's early days for me but I find the fact that they can do these type of ops very encouraging for us arther sufferers.

    BTW I'm loving this forum :)

    hi ladypea,

    So glad you are enjoying the forum!

    It is a great forum full of caring people who are always ready to offer support and advice. I have learned sooo much from others and have been given lots of support when I was going through a difficult patch with work and different arther 'episodes'....including this one!

    It means such a lot to be able to share what this rotten disease is doing, knowing peeps understand exactly what you mean and how you feel... we are all in the same boat!!

    jump in to any of the posts and chit chat too

    iris x
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