Elbow replacement: I'm new here and I would like to... - NRAS


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Elbow replacement

Ginger46 profile image

I'm new here and I would like to know if anyone can help me who might have been in this or a similar situation themselves. I use an elbow crutch on my right side and found out in the last couple of months that I will need elbow replacements in both elbows, the right being the worst, this is my only option if the current painkillers don't improve my situation. My worry is after the operation and eventually whether I will be able to use the crutch again or this will be inadvisable due to weight restrictions, even though this isn't lifting but weight bearing. I am at the moment looking into possibly buying a scooter to go in the car for whenever I go shopping. I hope this post made sense and someone can help me, sorry for epic post, thanks for at least reading it xx

16 Replies

Hi Ginger, sorry to hear about you needing new elbows, never heard of this before you should ask the Consultant I'm sure he would be able to settle your nerves down after all its him doing the Ops, any joint will initially be painful and sore the first week or more. I like your idea of the scooter, I've had a decompressed Ulna nerve, nothing like what you are having done but it did take 18 months in a sling on and off for it gradually to come back to full use though still get some pins and needles in my small pinky and finger next to it so around 90% successful. So my opinion see consultant what is allowed and what isn't for the short term till you heal all the best.

Thankyou, I will ask, only seen him once but I trust him wholeheartedly and feel confident for what he'll be able to do for me, I'm so glad I got pointed to this forum.

I've consulted an upper limb shoulder & elbow surgeon since 1998, but still not had replacements in those joints. Reason being, there's no guarantee of straightening elbows and high infection risk.

Ginger46 profile image
Ginger46 in reply to BoneyC

Thanks for your reply, my xrays show no gaps in the joints so this will be my only option. I have read a couple of people's experiences and most are positive but as it's not a common surgery there aren't many. Good luck to you too and what you decide to do xx

Get a scooter i wouldn't be without mine as i couldn't go out of the house. Sorry to hear you need two new elbows never heard of it. xxxxx

Ginger46 profile image
Ginger46 in reply to sylvi

TThankyou, not many people have as it's quite rare, even my nurse practitioner couldn't say much.

Hi, I have had both elbows replaced. I put the surgery off for years, mainly due to the worrry of infection. Eventually I could not cope with the pain and went ahead, one in 2015 and one in 2017. The difference is amazing. I do not think you will be able to use elbow crutches, there is a weight restriction on the use of the elbow. I forget this and do not do my elbows any favours! But I try very hard not to lift heavy things or use my arms to lever myself off chairs.

Ginger46 profile image
Ginger46 in reply to davannh

Thank you for your reply, I think I expected that, I'll have to learn to use my left crutch after the right elbow is done then after the left elbow replacement, well that will be definitely scooter time. I'm glad your replacements worked out for you, remember to look after yourself though.

meemmeem profile image
meemmeem in reply to davannh

Hi Davannh, I have been told I need elbow replacements but worry if I will be restricted by not being able to lift, push or pull as my specialist calls it. How long between surgeries did you have and was the outcome what you expected, thank you and hope you are keeping well.

davannh profile image
davannh in reply to meemmeem

I am sorry to hear of your elbow issues. My advice would be to find a specialist who has done this before. Mine, at Addenbrookes in Cambridge, is brilliant and has done both of mine. I have full movement, no pain whatsoever and I have to remind myself to be careful. I waited 18 months before replacements, one in 2015 the other in 2017. I spent 24 hours in hospital each time, got home and did EVERYTHING the physio told me. The pain after surgery was considerably less than the pain before surgery so that was a bonus. Be positive but mainly choose an excellent surgeon. I was first offered a replacement in 1990 but I put it off and off until I could no longer stand the pain. I hope it goes well and any advice please ask.

meemmeem profile image
meemmeem in reply to davannh

Thank you for your reply, I now have a date for my surgery, in 6 weeks. My surgeon has warned me about push, pull, and lift damage. I too will have to constantly remind myself. I cannot even use my arm to feed myself so it's really time to go ahead with surgery. Hope you are keeping well and I will contact you if I have any further questions.

I had elbow replacement nearly 3years ago.The weight limits for me are no lifting pushing or pulling anything over 7 pounds.

Ginger46 profile image
Ginger46 in reply to Beviej

Thank you for your reply, I think supporting my weight will be too much.

Hi I'm new on here, I dislocated my elbow in 2016, the hospital pulled it and put in back in, but they broke off the radial head. In 2017 they operated and took the broken piece out. It has not helped and I am having an elbow replacement next Thursday,my consultant told me it is very rare and he has not done one yet this year. Have. You had yours done as your post says a year ago, I look forward to hearing from you, ty fromDawn

Ginger46 profile image
Ginger46 in reply to dawn00

Hi Dawn, so sorry I haven't been on here in such a long time hence this late reply, no my elbow replacement hasn't been done yet. It's been a year of yes no yes no, new guidelines here, new guidelines there, I now can't have it done locally it has to be done at a specialist centre 2 hours away. I do understand the reasons as they are rare operations but it's just the long process to get to this point. I went for my initial appointment on Tuesday this week and I have been listed, could be months rather than weeks but they have taken on 2 new Drs so fingers crossed it won't be too long. Hope you're surgery went ok and you're recovering well, I'm sure it was really daunting at the time from Rebecca xx

Ginger46 profile image
Ginger46 in reply to Ginger46

Re my previous message, I'm now listed for Monday 28th October xx

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