Wrist replacement

Hi. Wondered if anyone wanted to share their experience of this? Am on the waiting list to have my left wrist done at kings in London. Wondered about post op phase, pain and plaster?! How long did you stay in hospital etc? Think that because I'm a nurse I'm sometimes expected to know the answers but it's very different when you're the patient!

Thanks, kerry

6 Replies

  • Hi, I had my right wrist replaced last November as it was very badly eroded and tendons had ruptured causing my pinkie to drop. I travelled from Scotland to the royal derby hospital as recommended by my consultant and had a total replacement plus end of ulna bone removed and tendon repair. I was in hospital for 4 nights and in a splint for about 6 weeks but I had a long splint that went up past my elbow to wear at night to hold my wrist in extension (I think). Afterwards I had lots of physio to do but I can honestly say it was the best thing I've ever had done as my wrist is moving well now and I have no pain in it. My option in Scotland was to fuse it as replacement not available near me. I'm 41 and have ra. If there's anything else you want to know just ask. Meant to say I had an epidural block in my arm during op and for further 2 days to prevent pain. Was lightly sedated for op and woke up and spoke to surgeon towards end but no pain. Hospital provided excellent pain relief when I was back in ward so the whole experience was fine.

  • Thanks for your reply. It's what I was expecting. My boss seems to think I'll be back at work after a day or two! Main reason for op is pain. I have no movent in my wrist now so anything I gain will be a benefit. I'm 41 next month and had RA for 8 yr. fabulous disease that no one understands properly, I'm a nurse and it's totally misunderstood by colleagues! Kerry x

  • Hi, I've just seen your post as I'm new to this forum. How did the wrist replacement go? What is your prognosis with it. My surgeon didn't seem keen on a replacement and is urging me to think about a fusion, which I'm a bit scared of. I'm 40 and my arthritis is pretty stable apart from terrible wrist pain. I'd love to hear from you. Thanks

  • Hi Julie,

    I'm now just over a year with my new wrist and would highly recommend that as opposed to fusion if possible and particularly if it's your dominant hand as having a bit of movement makes most things slightly easier ie. taking coins from a purse, getting tickets from a parking metre, drying hair etc. I have no pain in my wrist now and although my range of movement isn't huge, it's more than I had - physio was twice a week and quite gruelling at times but I worked hard at it to make sure it was worthwhile. I was seen at st John's hospital in Livingston by a really good plastic surgeon who said the standard op was fusion but as I was young (ish) lol and prepared to travel, that she could contact a surgeon in Derby who was well respected in wrist/hand ops and ask him if he would see me. He agreed, I went and his attitude and record of ops was great. He gave me confidence to ho ahead. Another surgeon in Edinburgh was more in favour of fusion as he felt it was longer lasting and left the wrist stronger, but the derby consultant had been doing wrist replacements for 15 years and not one patient had come back needing redone in all that time. That swung it for me. Sorry this is an essay lol. Any more info you want, just ask. I have pics as well but they're on my personal fb profile and not sure how to load them here. Good luck with your decision x

  • Thank-you so so much for your reply. Really interesting to hear about your experience. My surgeon in Oxford said that a wrist replacement would prob only last a decade......but I think, after your experience , I'll def get a second opinion. I have 3 children, and work and it's my dominant wrist which is worse at the moment. Pretty desperate to alleviate the pain. It's dragging me down. I'm sure you understand.

    Best wishes

  • Wrist replacement went really well. Good movement and no significant pain. Would recommend it. Had a great surgeon at Kings in london

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