Knee Replacement Patient Stories
Hear from other patients who have successfully taken a similar journey to recover from knee pain and see how a knee replacement helped them get back to the things they love.
Pam: I first started experiencing knee pain I guess about, I want to say maybe 8-10 years ago. And I was noticing that there was quite a bit of knee pain, but it has really become much worse.
I think I put off visiting the doctor because I didn't want to disrupt my life, and it wasn't to the point where it was debilitating. I wanted to continue my job, I wanted to travel.
I reached a breaking point back in November when I had my second Cortizone shot, it made matters worse rather than improved. The holidays were miserable. I remember working on Christmas Eve, it started to snow. My husband had to come into the store and escort me out to the car because I was afraid to walk out to the car. And then we went downtown to a restaurant and he had to pull right up in front of the restaurant instead of parking in the parking garage like we always do.
The pain has affected my relationships with people insofar as I feel like they have to do so much for me now. Everyone has been great, especially at work. My husband of course does so much for me. But it has definitely altered my life. People ask me to go to a baseball game, I can't go. Someone I really wanted to see in concert was just downtown, I couldn't go.
Coworker Susan: Probably for the last 10 years I've worked with her and I noticed that the pain has got progressively worse. We're hoping that when she has this replacement it will change her life back to what it was before.
Pam: My surgeon said that the rehabilitation would be, I would need to be absent from work for 6-8 weeks and that it would be rather arduous and intense, the physical therapy, and the pain level would be high. Of course, I am experiencing so much pain right now that I am really not that upset about that aspect of it. So, I think I am pretty well prepared mentally for what lies ahead.
Surgeon: I have been taking care of Pam for about 8 years. She's had a knee problem for a long, long time. Pam's situation is fairly typical for the type of patient that we see who require and would benefit from a knee replacement. She has bone rubbing on bone. She has significant symptoms to go with that. She's really gotten to a point where her activities and daily living have become compromised by her pain.
Knee replacement is one of the most widely performed procedures by orthopedic surgeons. I tell my patients that they should be able to expect anywhere from 90-95% pain relief.
I recommended that Pam have the ATTUNE® Knee for her situation because I have a lot of confidence that it is going to enable me to provide her the most stable, functioning, and the type of motion for her.
Pam: So today is D-day, the day of the surgery. I do have some anxiety, but I am sure everything will be fine.
I have been home from the hospital for about a week. My surgeon said to expect quite a bit of pain the first night, and there was. However, he did give me the pain meds to control the pain, so it hasn't been, for the most part, unbearable. The therapy is going well at home. There is some pain involved with it, of course, but the therapist is very good at taking it in small, incremental steps for me.
It is exciting because I can already feel that I can do more with this knee than I could with the old knee because it was in such bad shape. I actually am not using the cane or even the walker anymore, which surprised me.
So I am about 2 weeks out from surgery now and I am starting to walk better thanks to the physical therapist who has visited. I can already walk better than I used to before the surgery. It is a strange feeling, it doesn't really feel like it is part of me yet. It always feels as if I have an ACE bandage on me, but then I look down and of course I don't. I started to do some chores around the house. Every little thing just wears me out, but I am trying to build my strength back up, because I know it is important.
This knee actually feels sturdier than my original knee. I am pretty confident about putting weight on it.
I am back at work. I have my good days and my bad days, but I am actually able to walk at this point so much better than I did before the surgery.
My quality of life since the knee replacement has improved so much, it has just been like night and day. And now that I had my knee replaced, I don't even think about it when I wake up in the morning. I just get out of bed and go make coffee and get the paper. I don't have to worry about the pain every waking minute the way I did previously.
I definitely love my new Attune Knee.
Laura: My name is Laura, I work full time as a data entry operator and list maintenance person. I work at a local printing company in Sykesville, Maryland. My hobbies are: I ride a three wheeled motorcycle, which is a Trike, and I also sing professionally, mostly opera, regionally in the Baltimore Washington area.
I started having knee pain about six years before I sought out my orthopedic surgeon. The compromises I was making was I was no longer taking walks in the park which I loved to do. When I went grocery shopping I parked near the carts, and I would grab a cart in the parking lot. Go into the grocery store, only spend 15 to 20 minutes, and then have a really hard time getting back to the car. My knee pain caused me not to ride my motorcycle as often as I wished.
I work on the second floor in my office. There are 17 steps up to that second floor. There is no elevator. I had to plan going up and down those steps two and three times a day. The restroom is on the first floor, the sales office is on the first floor. So I had to deal with them a couple times a day. I had to take one step at a time because the pain was so bad.
The breaking point was a performance of Verdi's La forza del destino. This was in the fall of 2013 at The Kennedy Center. I was in so much pain on the stage, hobbling around, I was not comfortable. I had to wait for all of my fellow choristers to go on and off about 8 steps to get on to the stage, because I could only take them one at a time and hold on to the hand rail, and it was painful just going back to the dressing room. Going out to the parking garage after the show was over. I knew I had to do something because I knew I could not continue singing in this much pain.
Because I had, had one replacement already I had tremendous confidence in getting my second knee replaced, because of the success I have with the first knee replacement and recovery. My experience with recovery and rehabilitation included two weeks of in home physical therapy. Two to three times a week, and then after I was released from that I went to out patient physical therapy for six weeks, two to three times a week.
My quality of life has changed dramatically since I have had both my knees replaced, because I can do all of the things I love to do. I can perform on the stage. I sang in a performance of Messiah last December with no problems getting on or off that stage, or getting getting up and down out of the chair. I can ride my motorcycle. I can take my walks in the local park which I love to do. Taking water aerobics classes several times a week. Going up and down the steps at work at ease. Going up and down the steps to the basement laundry at ease. I have no problems going in and out of the grocery store, I can stay as long as I want and I don’t have to use the cart any more for holding or stability.
I begin everyday grateful that I am alive, and I am even more grateful now with my knees, because I am back to doing everything I love, and I am back to doing my full time job. I am going to keeping going and now that I have these knees noting is really stopping me.
If you would like more information about treatment option please visit
I'm Lani, I'm a small animal veterinary. I also do massage, chiropractic, and laser therapy on sport horses. I spend a lot of time hiking with my dog and I also have a new baby horse we are training to become a three-day eventer. My biggest passion in the world are the horses. Riding, training and bringing along baby horses so they can be shown, that's my passion in life.
My knee incident started back in 1996 when I went to get on a horse and he went sideways and almost exploded my left knee. That required surgery and I had pretty good time with it for a couple years but then I was having the joint pain more and more as things went on. My joint pain impacted my life significantly. I could not lift, I could not ride, I could not hike, I was very uncomfortable just walking. I was even having a hard time with little dogs. I was having a very difficult time standing for long hours at the surgery table or just at the exam table.
I was very, very emotionally distraught because I wasn't able to do my job. I wasn't able to handle the animals comfortably. I had to have somebody with me all of the time to help pick up and carry them and let them down.
I was on large amounts of anti-inflammatory and pain medications. I was getting lots of cortisone injections and none of those were helping me as far as to alleviating my pain just so that I could get along and do my daily routine. It was really affecting my riding. To ride this horse to the ability he needed to be ridden to, that was the final straw that made me decide that I wanted to have both of my knees done, and both at the same time.
The people afterwards said, "You were painful to watch," they go, "we didn't even recognize you walking," because I am walking like a normal person now.
The rehab for me after I had both knees replaced was pretty straightforward. They had me up walking the same night that both of my knees had been done. I was really motivated and I did work very hard at the physical therapy at home. My physical therapist was kind enough to tell me that in his twenty-plus years of doing physical therapy he had never seen anybody that had responded and was recovering as fast as I was and I explained to him it was because I was a person that had a lot of things left to do in my life and that this was going to help tremendously. I was just so happy to get my joints, my knee joints back.
Within six weeks of my knee replacements I was comfortable enough to get back up on my horse. Within a few weeks after that we were back to jumping, and schooling, and preparing for the upcoming competition season.
I don't have the excruciating pain. I can walk upstairs. Hiking in through some pretty rugged terrain doesn't bother me. It has just been a godsend.
If I had anything to do over again, I would have gotten them done sooner. I absolutely encourage anyone that has severe knee pain, no matter what their age, to have an examination by an orthopedic specialist to see if there is something that can be done to alleviate the pain and get you back on track on your life like I did. It is a lot smarter to get things done when you are healthier, when you're younger and stronger. It's a much easier surgery to recover from and then you've got the rest of your life ahead of you.
If you're suffering from severe knee pain like I did, please visit getbacksooner.com for further information about your options on knee treatment.
Bob, 67, is a business owner, competitive handball player and ATTUNE® Knee replacement patient.
Before I had my first knee replacement, the progression of pain had gotten worse and worse. My knee pain was caused basically by genetics—arthritis from my parents and overuse—I ran a lot of marathons and played a lot of handball. I played it once in the military. One time, and I was incurably addicted. After one time. I went overseas, to Korea. The base that I was on, the commanding General was a handball junkie. Now, that’s the way we refer to ourselves, because we always have to have a fix of handball. I’ve been playing handball for 45 years. It’s a passion. I did not want to give it up. I go to tournaments all over the country. I was fearful that I wouldn’t be able to play anymore. I would come home from playing handball and I’d have to rest my knees. I’d get up in the morning and go down the steps one at a time because the knee pain was so bad.
I was playing a handball tournament in Colorado on a knee that had swollen up. There was a lot of pain involved in it. Flew back to South Bend, the knee was still sore. Went to my orthopaedic surgeon, he took an x-ray of it and said, “You could be a candidate for a knee replacement.” It affected the quality of my life by not allowing me to do the things I wanted to do for any length of time, especially playing handball longer than an hour, or maybe walking more than 15 minutes with my wife, or cutting my grass all at once.
I knew I needed knee replacement for quite a while, but the final decision came when I was tailgating before a football game. Standing for about 2 or 3 hours on my knee, I could barely walk back to my car, because the knee pain was so bad. I sat on the curb and told my wife, “Go get the car and pick me up. “ I knew at that point in time that I had to do something, and the sooner the better.
Bob’s orthopaedic surgeon replaced his left knee in 2010, and two years later, when he started experiencing pain in his right knee, he visited his surgeon again.
My doctor told me about the ATTUNE Knee. I had known several weeks earlier that there was a new knee out, and the reason I wanted that knee is that I wanted to have more stability, and I wanted to get back to playing handball as soon as I could. And that was the big thing. I did not want to play recreational handball. I wanted to play competitive handball at my age in my age group. When I went down to have my knee evaluated, I asked him, I said, “Is it possible to get the ATTUNE Knee?” He said, “Yes, it is.” So that’s what I decided.
The rehab process is only everything. I asked my physical therapist to push me. And I said, “I want to be pushed because I’m on a mission to get back to playing handball.” It’s one day at a time. You play a little better. The next day you play a little better. Now that I have my ATTUNE Knee, I can do the tailgating for the longest term I want, stand there and enjoy it and not have the pain or the discomfort of the bone on bone situation I had before I had my ATTUNE Knee put in.
The quality of life has changed back to probably where I was in my mid-thirties or early forties. I was able to do things without pain, able to go on walks, able to cut the grass, still continue to play competitive handball, all the things you can do when you have two good knees. People suffer from lack of knowledge as far as joint replacement. They hesitate, they wait, they live in misery when they don’t have to do that. I would tell other people, “Why hesitate? If you’re suffering from knee pain, can’t sleep, can’t walk, can’t do the things that you have a passion for doing, whether it’s playing tennis, golf, walking, don’t hesitate.
For those experiencing severe knee pain or interested in learning more about joint replacement with ATTUNE Knee, please visit www.kneereplacement.com.
Rebecca, 67, is a professional interior designer from Baltimore, Maryland, with a passion for gardening and spending time with her two grandchildren
In 2009, she began to experience debilitating pain in her knees that impacted her daily life.
She went to see her orthopaedic surgeon, and in 2012, he replaced both her knees with the ATTUNE® Knee System.
Today, Rebecca is back at work and able to move around her garden and play with her grandchildren with confidence.
Rebecca experienced debilitating knee pain.
She was forced to watch her family enjoy vacation time rather than be an active participant. Instead of hiking, swimming and fishing with her family, she spent her vacations in a chair. Taking care of her grandchildren became difficult.
Joint pain was affecting her quality of life.
She decided to see her orthopaedic surgeon, who recommended knee replacement surgery with the ATTUNE Knee System.
The ATTUNE Knee System has helped her get back to living an active life.
Just two days after surgery, Rebecca was home from the hospital. Today, Rebecca is back at work and able to move around her garden and play with her grandchildren with confidence. Her knees help her feel stable going down stairs and she no longer experiences knee pain.
Rebecca actively encourages others suffering from joint pain to speak to an orthopaedic surgeon.
Don’t put off that conversation for too long—it made such a difference in my life.
Roger, 73, of Federal Way, Washington, has always led an active lifestyle, both professionally and personally. An active cyclist and avid fisherman, he loved playing with his grandkids, and was always on the go.
Roger suffered from osteoarthritis in his knees for more than 15 years and it began to affect his activities and his personal life, limiting his mobility and even affecting his sleep.
Roger finally saw an orthopaedic surgeon in 2011 and had his right knee replaced with the ATTUNE® Knee System. A year later, his left knee was replaced with an ATTUNE Knee.
Now Roger’s back to keeping up with his grandkids and doing the activities he loves.
As a heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) specialist, Roger’s work often required long days and heavy lifting.
And his hobbies demand a lot of physical strength, too. He loves fishing, playing racquetball and cycling. One of his proudest accomplishments is completing a two-day, 200-mile bike ride from Seattle, WA to Portland, OR.
Roger suffered from osteoarthritis and pain in his knees.
Eventually, his knee pain prevented him from doing the things he loved, and even interfered with his sleep.
After four arthroscopic surgeries, multiple joint lubricant injections and many sleepless nights, Roger finally saw an orthopaedic surgeon in 2011. His surgeon chose the ATTUNE Knee System, which allows Roger to feel stable when walking and getting back to doing what he loves.
The ATTUNE Knee System has helped him live an active life again
With the help of physical therapy and dedication to his rehabilitation, Roger was able to regain his mobility and range of motion in his knee faster than he’d anticipated. He can easily climb stairs and ladders, get on the floor to play with his grandkids and even get back to taking fishing trips. Best of all, he’s able to get a good night’s rest again.
Roger encourages others living with knee pain not to delay talking to their doctor about treatment options.
When you experience joint pain, you don’t think there is an end in sight. Through my knee replacements, I am doing the simple things and the not-so-simple things like starting to train for another bike ride. Most importantly, I’m truly able to enjoy my retirement with my family.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
The performance of knee replacements depends on age, weight, activity level and other factors. There are potential risks and recovery takes time. People with conditions limiting rehabilitation should not have this surgery. Only an orthopaedic surgeon can tell if knee replacement is right for you.