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Walking the Camino Francais with a Total Knee Replacement

Discussion in 'Medical Problems' started by Oak Hill Walkers, Nov 27, 2010.

  1. Oak Hill Walkers

    Oak Hill Walkers New Member

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    I had to cancel our Camino Frances this fall in part due to my osteoarthritis in my left knee. I'm now taking Synvisc injections to relieve the pain of simple walking. I'm a candidate for a total knee replacement. My doctor told me, that after a knee replacement, I should be able to walk in 'rolling hills'.

    My question: If I use trekking poles, would I have trouble doing the Camino Francais (from StJdP to Santiago)? Anyone know or heard of anyone doing the camino with a total knee replacement?

    Thanks in advance.

     
  2. Covey

    Covey Active Member

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    Nice to hear that you are still going strong!!

    I have not come across anyone who has proclaimed they have an artificial knee, but I would suggest that you might think of starting in Pamplona or Roncesvalles rather than St Jean. The St Jean to Roncesvalles stage is a bit brutal in that it is a fairly steep 20km uphill climb on a metaled road followed by 7kms steepish downhill walk on a forest track and then back on the road again. The Winter Route via Valcarlos is easier and less height to climb, but the last 9kms is a long slog up through the forest tracks.

    If it were me, I would not want to risk injury problems arising from Day 1. The Pamplona to Burgos is a much more gentle introduction to the Camino and there are many more albergues from Pamplona on-wards where you can rest up if needed.
     
  3. Oak Hill Walkers

    Oak Hill Walkers New Member

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    The Synvisc injection in my left knee has worked wonders.

    Injections are supposed to last only 6 months but I'm doing well on 9 months.

    Now thinking of doing 30 days of walking in May 2012, either 1/2 of route or doing the whole route by skipping around with taxis and buses. Looking to keep average daily mileage to 8-10 miles.
     
  4. John Hussey

    John Hussey Super Moderator

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    Not a total knee replacement but two weeks ago I had anthroscopy on the left knee. I was put completely under and three small incisions were made around the knee where the surgeon slipped inside with some sort of miniature tool and camera and repaired some torn meniscus I had hurt a couple years previous while hiking. When I went to the doctor for diagnsis I was sweating the total replacement but the doctor had me do an MRI and discovered tat my problem was not so much loss of the cartilage but that I had abused it. I was tickled because I already had my airline ticket for Madrid mid October. I am doing fine and slowly building my walking distance up. Good luck with yours.

    You know of course that it is the gray hair causing problem?
     
  5. Gazza

    Gazza Member

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    Interesting thread, last week I took my wife to one of the top Australian knee orthopaedics with the view of knee replacement (ex elite basketballer). His comments were, you don't have cancer, yr not dieing hence yr ok. He won't do knee replacement yet. What he did suggest (until it gets unbearable & debilitating) is to take painkilling tablets (panadeine extra/voltaren etc) on a regular basis. This will reduce swelling & mask the pain. As he said "can't do any more damage, no cartilage left". He also said that when the day came for a full replacement, that apart from running & strenuous twisting life would be normal with about 120 degree flex in the knee.

    Knee replacements have come a long way & over here this doctor has patients up & walking the next day.
     
  6. mtrqa

    mtrqa New Member

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    I have a total knee replacement and also a hip replacement. The life after the operations are so much better, not so much pain. At home I can walk 10km without too much problem. This summer my goal is to walk from Sarria to Santiago in a very slow pace.
     
  7. New knees

    New knees Guest

    Hi, by the time I come to do the Camino Frances ( St Jean Pied de Port to Santiago de Compostela) I will have two knee replacements, hence name new knees!! (First one August 2014, then second one when recovered from the first operation). I will work hard to get my legs strong. I will just take it steady and stop more frequently if needed, taking extra care especially on down hill sections. You can dog sled ride with TKR, so walking should not be a problem. If you have a dream you can do it, and it is about being mentally tough not always necessarily being physically tough. Good luck and just be positive.
     
  8. natashafiket

    natashafiket New Member

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    My husband and I are in our 70's having loved walking SJPP to Santiago four times since retirement and having planned once more for good measure! In October 2014 I slipped, fell and broke my hip needing three pins to put it together. It seems to be healing and I'm able to walk 10km with a stick. The surgeon didn't bat an eyelid when I said we wanted to go back in September 2015 to walk very slowly, but our family doctor (who got us started on long distance walking so we'd lose weight -it worked:)- looked askance when I told him our plans. I've read comments about walking with new knees- anyone walked with a repaired hip? Thanks:)
     
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