Prof RPA Janssen MD PhD is member of the...
Shared decision making in knee osteoarthritis
I am a man, 67 years of age. I have been active in sports for a long time, mostly running, swimming, tennis and jiu-jitsu. I had knee osteoarthritis in my right knee for more than 10 years. It got worse in the last few years with increasing pain. At last, I had a hard time functioning in ADL. I had to stop my sport activities in due years. This was a burden for me. Several doctors had advised a knee arthroplasty in the past. I was hesitant, being active in sports which might no longer be possible with a prosthesis. The longevity of a prosthesis is limited and several revision surgeries may not be possible. My dilemma was "when is the optimal timing for my knee surgery?
My physiotherapist recommended dr Janssen. He is very well graded on Zorgkaart Nederland. This doctor takes all the time you need. He asks the right questions, does a physical examination, evaluates the x-rays and listened well to my answers.
In the last few years, I have have been interested in the latest developments on knee osteoarthritis. I asked dr Janssen his opinion on three alternative therapies instead of knee arthroplasty. He was well aware of these developments and discussed the options seriously. Finally, we concluded that the knee prosthesis was the best solution for my medical condition. He was also very honest in explaining that some of my sports activities would not be wise for the long term survival of my prosthesis. Dr Janssen provoded ample information on the pros and cons of the various treatment options which allowed me confident shared decision making and the decision to undergo the knee prosthesis operation.
Furthermore, he provided good advice for exercises to be done ahead of surgery for a more effective rehabilitation.
After the succesful surgery of my knee, I experienced a pleasurable hospital stay in the rapid recovery program at Maxima Medical Center Eindhoven. The nursing and physiotherpy staff is very friendly and stimulated my rehabilitation.
After my hospital discharge, the rehabilitation consists of intensive physiotherapy. This is quite a challenge, small steps at the time initially. Dr Janssen had informed me that this would take some work. I am glad that he presented these realistic expectations beforehand, making my rehabiltation less frustrating. My physiotherapist and dr Janssen worked well together to confidently shape my rehabilitation program.
I am now a few months after surgery and I feel reborn. I have no more pain in my knee, can move about freely and I have accepted that high impact sports are no longer part of my life.
In retrospect, I am convinced to have chosen the right time for my knee surgery. At the outpatient clinic, I have told dr Janssen that this knee surgery was one of the best decisions in my life.