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Newbie with knee injury
New to site...injury occurred in WA 3 mo ago. No prob w L & I so far, but here are basics. Tore meniscus. Had arthroscopic repair, but knee is worse now. I am in late 50's, previously had 4 surgeries on knees over 30 years. Needless to say, knee replacement has come up, but I am trying to find info to help me because I really believe injury made this come up as the joint was doing well previously but just is not healing due to bone on bone. What should I be prepared for? Should I start pushing for the replacement when I feel strongly that I would rather spend time recovering from a replacement and getting strong again to go back to work. Do I address this with my doctor? Case manager? I am in so much pain daily I can't do normal things, but PT thinks it's "getting better" and told me WC doesn't care if it hurts. How do I start to get this on the table for consideration, and what might I be up against??? Thanks to all.
yes, your doctor is the key. if you don't have medical recommendation to support knee replacement and connection to the injury it won't happen.
even if the doctor does make a case for it you'll likely have to convince an IME as well --a second opinion is usual before such a serious procedure.
Reminder :
........Each state has their own comp system; POST YOUR STATE to get accurate information. Use the search feature to find information from similar questions.
thank you for your quick response. So, this might sound like a naive question, but how do I go about 'convincing' an IME?? Is pain enough of a symptom? Is the fact that I was doing relatively well before the injury significant? My surgeon already told me "your knee is ready for replacement whenever you are ready". But what might an IME argue, and do I have any appeal rights with an IME decision....isn't it almost a given that an IME would say 'nah....you can take ibuprofen and get a job sitting' (I'm a nurse).
Actually your condition has to support the need for such a procedure.
Maybe a medial website can give information as to what factors make for high probability for success for total knee replacement.
Those are all medical questions, not necessarily worker's comp questions.
Disputed medical evidence is resolved by the comp court.
Reminder :
........Each state has their own comp system; POST YOUR STATE to get accurate information. Use the search feature to find information from similar questions.
If the arthritis has worsened since the scope surgery from the original films/mri at the time of injury, you can file to have added "Substantial Aggravation of pre-existing Osteoarthritis of the whatever part". This is what I did with mine. And I'm only 40 and getting ready to have a replacement because the meniscectomy for the torn meniscus in my knee caused my allograft from 3-4 years prior (had this because of cartilage loss due to arthritis) to fail and to worsen from May surgery to the October f/u MRI because I was having issues still. It went to OBWC doc who sided with me as well for the cyst that was starting again and the lateral tear that was found during surgery that the MRI never picked up (imagine that). It helps that I am an Ortho Nurse so I know it is common for injuries to cause OA to worsen faster than it would have without the injury.
This is a washington state injury and Ohio work comp rules do not apply.
Reminder :
........Each state has their own comp system; POST YOUR STATE to get accurate information. Use the search feature to find information from similar questions.
Doglover you will know when it is time for the knee replacement.

When the meniscus surgery is done the meniscus is trimmed often making the joint worse and more unstable.

Is the knee unstable? Is the joint giving when you walk? Are their problems with the knee supporting your weight?

It will likely take multiple doctors saying you need a knee replacement, supporting x-rays, and MRI's before work comp will knowledge you might need one.

My injury was 2005, due to delays in treatment the meniscus surgery was delayed for 5 months. The surgery did not help and the knee was more unstable.

I could only take a limited number of steps, I did little shopping and did not go out of the house unless it was to the doctor or hospital.

I was sent to 13 doctors by work comp and my attorney, 12 said I needed a Total knee replacement. The work comp doctor said I did not need one at this time.

My attorney filed in court and after a 3 year battle I was awarded the knee replacement which was done July 2008,

Good luck!

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