Two years ago I was diagnosed with moderate to sever bi-lateral osteoarthritis. The condition is work related as a result of my 23 years in law enforcement. Twenty-one years at the time of my diagnosis. That amount of time spent carrying an extra twenty-five to thirty pounds of gear around the hip, chest and back coupled with the constant entry and exit of a patrol car will accelerate the degradation of anyone's joints. I enjoyed several collateral duty assignments which were done in addition to our regular work schedule. I spent twenty years on the department's off-road vehicle team riding off-road motorcycles and snowmobiles through some pretty rough terrain with an untold number of crashes, spills, and falls. And lastly I spent sixteen years on the department's search and rescue team with a total of over 3,000 miles hiked with a forty plus pound pack, off trail, and sometimes boulder hopping while playing a deadly game of hide and seek. I have had a multitude of tears in the meniscus of both knees as well as prior knee surgeries.

It took our workers compensation provider more than one year to make the determination that my injury was work related and they have spent the past year and a half denying any of the treatment options recommended by the orthopedist. WC said no to ortho-visco supplemental injections and no to stem cell therapy. During that time I have continued working and my knees have continued to worsen.

That all changes tomorrow as about a month ago Workers Comp reversed their decision to deny surgery and agreed to replacement surgery. I will have a total knee replacement on my left knee on Tuesday December 3rd and in eight to ten weeks I should be having another TKR on my right knee. All of that will hasten my retirement which will come as soon as the doctor releases me from his care. The county's rules will prevent me from returning to work as a law enforcement officer with TKRs.

Chapter 2 begins next year, we'll see what is in store.

If you're not living life on the edge, you're taking up too much space!

 

 

 

Original Post
Robert M posted:

Two years ago I was diagnosed with moderate to sever bi-lateral osteoarthritis. The condition is work related as a result of my 23 years in law enforcement. Twenty-one years at the time of my diagnosis. That amount of time spent carrying an extra twenty-five to thirty pounds of gear around the hip, chest and back coupled with the constant entry and exit of a patrol car will accelerate the degradation of anyone's joints. I enjoyed several collateral duty assignments which were done in addition to our regular work schedule. I spent twenty years on the department's off-road vehicle team riding off-road motorcycles and snowmobiles through some pretty rough terrain with an untold number of crashes, spills, and falls. And lastly I spent sixteen years on the department's search and rescue team with a total of over 3,000 miles hiked with a forty plus pound pack, off trail, and sometimes boulder hopping while playing a deadly game of hide and seek. I have had a multitude of tears in the meniscus of both knees as well as prior knee surgeries.

It took our workers compensation provider more than one year to make the determination that my injury was work related and they have spent the past year and a half denying any of the treatment options recommended by the orthopedist. WC said no to ortho-visco supplemental injections and no to stem cell therapy. During that time I have continued working and my knees have continued to worsen.

That all changes tomorrow as about a month ago Workers Comp reversed their decision to deny surgery and agreed to replacement surgery. I will have a total knee replacement on my left knee on Tuesday December 3rd and in eight to ten weeks I should be having another TKR on my right knee. All of that will hasten my retirement which will come as soon as the doctor releases me from his care. The county's rules will prevent me from returning to work as a law enforcement officer with TKRs.

Chapter 2 begins next year, we'll see what is in store.

When I finished my residency, my attraction to malpractice law, product liability, and contract law lead me to apply to law school(went nights year 1 as I figured that my practice would slowly grow and I would have time).

Fortunately or unfortunately I became very busy in my office full time and was a bit fried after 12 years in school....but I LEARNED how NASTY Insurance Companies are and how workmans comp function and are in business to DENY claims, DENY coverage. I hate them and lent my expertise to anyone who wanted to fight them. They know that most lay folks do not have the funds, skills, or wherewithal to fight back....and folks are ruined by their bean counter mentality(fu*k them/pardon me) and I would guide patients to lawyers AND expert testimony to challenge bunko rulings.

They took years away from you by delaying/disguising appropriate cause/diagnosis/treatment to suit their bottom line.....it pisses me off and when insurance companies got appeal letters from me with 200 pages of research and standard of care affidavits from me...they paid and ran. I started class action fraud lawsuits that were quickly settled for breach of "informed consent" that approaches criminal negligence.

FOLKS....do NOT let a bunch of pencil pushing jackasses dictate the quality of your health and the appropriate treatment...if they are bean counters they will realize very often that tieing them up in court coupled with nasty publicity doesn't bode well for them.

ROBERT M sitting in front of a jury, describing his 20 plus years of physical work and skeletal abuse, garners big trouble for workmans comp(crap) and insurance companies. they see a guy limping to the witness stand with the insurance company"s lawyers wearing $1600 Brioni suits(LOL).

BE SAFE!

Robert M posted

That all changes tomorrow as about a month ago Workers Comp reversed their decision to deny surgery and agreed to replacement surgery. I will have a total knee replacement on my left knee on Tuesday December 3rd and in eight to ten weeks I should be having another TKR on my right knee. All of that will hasten my retirement which will come as soon as the doctor releases me from his care. The county's rules will prevent me from returning to work as a law enforcement officer with TKRs.

Chapter 2 begins next year, we'll see what is in store.

Good luck for a quick recovery, Robert. I've had a couple of buddies get that job done and the results have been fantastic. Quick recovery and no looks back. Best, Amigo. You earned it. 

My daughter is an RN and single mom (with 4 kids) who has been off work for more than 18 months on a work-comp claim.

She was beat up by a patient, which was bad. But the injury was aggravated into a disability by a work-comp bean counter practicing medicine without a license from some desk - who insisted on courses of treatment which nearly killed her (bad drug reaction).

I'm not a vindictive man, but I'd like to meet the idiot/criminal who maimed my daughter - not the incoherent patient who gave her the initial injury, but the insurance criminal who ruined her nervous system. I'd like to see him incarcerated. This state needs work comp reform in the worst possible way - it isn't working for small business, and it certainly isn't working for victims.

Hi Robert,

I just had a total knee done on October 7th. Yes it hurts like heck and the first couple of days is brutal pain wise.

If you stay with it and do the exercises they tell  you and go to therapy, it gets better.

There is a strap out there called Stretch Out Strap, you can get it on Amazon. It will become your best friend.

It allows you to stretch your knee at home and really helps.

I'm 2 months out and almost back to full flexibility.

Good luck!

Tom Boney posted:

Hi Robert,

I just had a total knee done on October 7th. Yes it hurts like heck and the first couple of days is brutal pain wise.

If you stay with it and do the exercises they tell  you and go to therapy, it gets better.

There is a strap out there called Stretch Out Strap, you can get it on Amazon. It will become your best friend.

It allows you to stretch your knee at home and really helps.

I'm 2 months out and almost back to full flexibility.

Good luck!

I’ll look into that. 

Robert...We will be hurting together. I'm getting my Rt. knee replaced on Dec 16 and my left ASAP after that !   It will be fun to compare notes.  I'm in so much pain right now I don't know if it will be any worse. I had to return from our home in Baja because of the pain and I ran out of Vicoden !  I was considering having both done at once but have been talked out of it.  Good Luck to you Robert !............Bruce

Is it possible that driving a Speedster has caused some knees to go out??!  I had my right knee replaced August 20 so I'm a little over 3 months out.  Good luck to you both, Robert and Bruce!   My knee is now perfect in every way---exactly like the original knee but without any pain at all.  Looking back on the process I wish I had known how it was going to go, especially that in about 3-4 weeks the pain would greatly subside and at 2-3 months it would be feeling great and I'd be walking completely normally.   At the one month mark I felt like I'd be limping, swollen, hurting, and on a cane forever  and it was hard to realize that my knee would be just great before very long.  

If I ever had to have my other knee replaced I'd feel a lot more confident knowing that yes, there is an end to the recovery.  I am hopeful though, that the amount of cartilage  in there will last as long as I need it.  

aircooled posted:

Robert...We will be hurting together. I'm getting my Rt. knee replaced on Dec 16 and my left ASAP after that !   It will be fun to compare notes.  I'm in so much pain right now I don't know if it will be any worse. I had to return from our home in Baja because of the pain and I ran out of Vicoden !  I was considering having both done at once but have been talked out of it.  Good Luck to you Robert !............Bruce

I asked to do both as well and my doctor said he won’t do it that way unless he absolutely has to. 
I’m at t-minus 2 hours until the saws come out. 

STAN GALAT:  In 2018, I spent 2 months in the hospital.  I'm embarrassed to admit I did not know what a tough job nursing can be.  The pros (and they are in every sense of the word) that cared for me were amazing. They often have to deal with folks in pain, and others under some tough conditions.  I am probably 30 to 40 years senior to most of them, but their maturity and demeaner was something to see.

You and your daughter probably already know this, nurses often give patients more than just medical care.  Let her know for I'm a fan.  I hope things work out for her.

Nurses....   ALL Nurses, ROCK!

I hate to have to need them from time to time, but always very glad to have them there when I do and they're always terrific.
***************************************

Boy!  @Robert M says he's getting a new knee and then it seems like half the site has had theirs done, too.  Bunch'a Geriatrics!   

My biking friend, Pat, had both of his done early in 2019 about 5 weeks apart and his recovery sounds like all of you.  He was back on a bike trainer 3 weeks after the second one doing easy pedaling.   In April, he was back on the road, in May doing easy rides and back with the Sunday morning crowd in late July, keeping up on easy/moderate rides.  The guy's a trooper.

The surprise (for him and us other bikers when we first saw him again) was when he looked at himself in a full-length mirror after a while and suddenly noticed that he was no longer bow-legged for the first time in his life.

At 21/y I crashed ( T - boned) a BSA bike into a '64 Chevy at 70 mph. I spent 12 plus weeks in the hospital,  had it not been for a Nurse on the graveyard shift  to notice I had almost no pulse in my right leg, I would have surely lost it. Over the decades I have been in the hospital for three unrelated major health issues .  .........Nurses are Gods gift to mankind , truly Angels !

Just passed my 1 year after total knee. Was told wait another 6 months the pain should be gone. Was told wait for 6 months 6 months ago--hmmm sounds like the doc made it past the 1 year  time period. At 6 weeks they had to put me under to break up scar tissue since a PT that had never worked on me steps in and hyper-extends my leg and injures a tendon deep inside that nobody has attended to yet today. In fact 6 months ago a PT and doc thought it was my IT Band--guess that was not a good guess--WTF!!!! In 4 weeks I went from 95* on my way to healing to not being able to bend it 80*. This led to being knocked out again and having my leg basically shoved up my ass. Going in for a new opinion since I still have swelling daily, a hot spot near the knee cap, and daily/nightly pain from the tendon that my surgeon does not want to repair because he is afraid of infection. Yes---I am pissed!!!!  Yes, the healing is worse than what you had prior to surgery but it gets better--well most do--I am still waiting.

So far so good. Surgery was at about 12:30 and it lasted almost two hours. The doctor described my femur and tibia as dinosaur bones because they were so large. Took a little longer than anticipated but it turned out well. The pain is just as you guys described. My tolerance is pretty good but this is beyond that. The first Percocet I took didn’t make much of a dent in the pain. Just got my second dose and they doubled it. I was up and walking by 10:00 pm yesterday. Made it all the away around the whole floor. I’ve walked three laps this morning. A lot of foot traffic in the room today with everyone checking on me. Doing lots of ankle pumps, quad sets, short arc quad sets, isometric hamstring sets, and heel slides. Hard not to want to put a slight bend in the knee but that is a big no no.

Going home later today, I just don’t know what time yet. 

Thank you all for the well wishes and prayers. 

Excellent news!

I'll join the chorus and say do your PT! A little later in your healing, if you're a high-tolerance-high-work guy, ask your PT person if it will help to do more. Many of the exercise limits are set for normal folks and sometimes a little more is a good thing. BUT sometimes it's not, so ask first before you dive into extra reps. You sound like a more athletic person used to working through pain for his gain, so you might be capable of more than the usual joint replacement candidate. It''l help to know if going the extra mile will help or hinder.  Go get 'em, Robert!

PS.

I've had different recon knee surgery and as soon as they found out I could do more reps, they had me pushing it. It led to a remarkably fast recovery, but everybody and every issue is different. Have faith and press on.

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