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ACL for the over 50'S consultant says hospital does not operate as to old

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi can anyone give me some advice, a lovely French park skier crashed into me on the 25th April and I have ruptured my ACL and torn my Medial ligaments.... I have finally seen my consultant who has said that they do not operate on the over 50's as to old. Can anyone advise on knee surgeons in the north of England as I live nr Market Rasen Lincs. I do not mind travelling to have the op done and if necessary will pay to go private.
Sad
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@Rachelljtaylor, welcome to snowheads and sorry to hear that your consultant has such a ridiculous attitude - who was that? I can suggest Joe Sudakhar in Darlington. https://www.cddft.nhs.uk/our-services/a-z-of-clinical-staff/consultants/mr-joseph-e-sudhakar.aspx

His private practices https://www.bmihealthcare.co.uk/consultants/joseph-e-sudhakar#gdpr-out
https://finder.bupa.co.uk/Consultant/view/33792/mr_joseph_sudhakar
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Definitely get a second opinion. However will observe that a number of people on here have gone route of going back to skiing without and ACL (there are threads in this section of the forum about that).
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If you google "acl reconstruction over 50" you will find the opinion of Rachelljtaylor's surgeon is very common, if not the norm.
You can get back to skiing without repairing the ACL.
There are pros and cons.
I would hope you meet a surgeon who will explain those pros and cons carefully, and let you decide what to do.
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@Jonpim, agreed pros and cons but "you are too old" at over 50 is a ridiculous generalisation.
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Its Grimsby Hospital, after saying that I also sail, scuba dive, cycle, play tennis and go on walking holidays he winced. He is going to notify me of an appointment with the knee surgeon. But he was not hopeful.
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@Rachelljtaylor, is your consultant not the knee surgeon then?
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@Rachelljtaylor, Just a thought but it doesn’t sound like it was your fault in any way, so can’t you get it done privately on insurance?
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I didn't realise that he wasn't the knee surgeon until Friday when he said he was going to ask for an appointment.
As to having it done privately on insurance I'll have a look into this. Thanks for the reply.
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Bit out of area for you but Jez Brown, NHS or Claremont Hospital, Sheffield. He's carried out ACL reconstruction of both of my knees, last one at age 48'ish. I asked what happens when I trash myself again, just come back and we'll sort you was the answer. No mention of age.

Paul H.
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@Rachelljtaylor, the BUPA hospital where I had mine done did a package price for ACL recon which included all follow on physio - and you need a LOT of physio after a recon if you go down that route. It is not an easy recovery.
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Also is your knee still swollen and have you been given physio for it? I needed that to get the swelling down and full range of movement back which they insist on before they operate. I was back jogging just before the op, it was 6months post op before I was able to start going back to hockey training and that was with “no sprinting” and “no tackling” instruction from my physio.
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I'm on the physio route at the moment and have most of my movement I just cannot straighten it at ghd moment but am working on it.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Hi Paulh
I'm originally from Staveley, just 12 miles from Sheffield so know it well.
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Rachelljtaylor wrote:
I'm on the physio route at the moment and have most of my movement I just cannot straighten it at ghd moment but am working on it.


That’s good - it can be very hit and miss whether you actually get referred to any. I wasn’t until after I was seen by the consultant who was appalled the GP hadn’t referred me for it.

Best of luck - how stable you are without the ACL varies from person to person. Mine was very unstable without (in fact it isn’t stable enough for sprinting or hockey with the half of my reconstruction that still remains Sad however good enough to ski on with a brace snowHead )
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FWIW I ruptured my ACL aged 60. The consultant (an accomplished skier)wasn't recommending a reconstruction. And I'm glad I didn't. Still ski, carefully, golf, walk and cycle. I don't run or play tennis, but that's no hardship for me.
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Thanks everyone for the responses so far it is great to see that on not on my own. My GP has only triaged me with painkillers hes still not seen me and hospital never mentioned being referred to nhs choices etc.
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@Rachelljtaylor,

Ah, not a totally unrealistic recommendation then. PM me if you want further information or tips on navigating the NHS system.

PH.
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NHS England you have the right to patients choice. We don’t get that in Wales....
I believe there is a very good knee clinic in Birmingham- so if you can find the right specialist then use the patients choice route.
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@Rachelljtaylor, hi, top knee surgeon based in the north is Nick London, Leeds/Harrogate based. Google him he’s the best, deals with all sports knee injuries, pros etc, nice guy too. Not cheap but they never are. Good luck.

https://www.hdft.nhs.uk/consultants/professor-nick-london/
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my experience - I am 50 odd, meniscus was wearing out so I curtailed my skiing. It felt like an accident waiting to happen. And it did, small collapse, pop. ACL done. I went to a top bloke near Innsbruck, MRI, he said you should have this reconstructed, it will be worth it. I am glad I did it. My French physio friend said it was a good idea to make my leg stronger than ever before, and so I cycle a lot. But others seem to manage without the trauma of an op so just take good advice - and follow it. good luck.
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you could always go for some pig ligaments Dr Stone in SF
stoneclinic
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Not sure what part of the North you want to look at but I cannot recommend Gobowen Orthopaedic Hospital highly enough (The Robert Jones & Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust). My wife and I are ex NHS senior staff and I can honestly state it is one of the most efficient, proactive and professional NHS organisations we have ever used as a patient. A referral from your GP should start the process for a private consultation.
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I'm curious about your "state" as well. How does your knee feel? What can you do? Are you going through PT? (never mind - just saw your answer)

Ruptured mine in France... also a collision. No surgery, just PT. Did it March 2018 at (nearly) 47 years old. Went skiing in March and May of this year. All feels good. I use a brace "just in case" (or for my confidence and peace of mind)
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@Rachelljtaylor,

Rachel, See if you can get an appointment with Mr Ricardo Pacheco : I saw him at St Hughes in Peakes lane GY (NHS Choose and Book) :: he does the Knees for Scunthorpe United players, so must be good !

https://www.nlg.nhs.uk/news/live-surgery-event/
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I had my ACL repaired when I was over 50. Why, if you live in Lincs, are you after a surgeon in the north of England?
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To someone in Brighton, Lincolnshire is in the North Wink
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@Rachelljtaylor,
Sorry to have come to your post late but the orthopaedic literature is crystal clear on the following. ACL reconstruction in the over 40 year is a perfectly reasonable decision to make. In fact there is some evidence that the over 40’s do better than the under 40’s. You can’t say that very often! Jonathan’s Bell
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You know it makes sense.
@Rachelljtaylor,
Pm me if you still need help
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Ho Jonathan
Thanks for the message, I have now been told to wait another two months for physio and to hit the gym. I had another appointment with a hip and knee specialist at the hospital who again is very dismissive about having the op. My ACL is snapped completely but no damage to meniscus which is good. I have damaged to the medial ligament for which physio is now helping I hope.
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when I had my ACL done at 57 (thigh tendon graft etc) the surgeon said a) yes, the surgeon's skills are important but b) prehab and rehab are crucial. Either way you go, the message seems to be, get your legs stronger than ever before.
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Rachelljtaylor wrote:
Ho Jonathan
Thanks for the message, I have now been told to wait another two months for physio and to hit the gym. I had another appointment with a hip and knee specialist at the hospital who again is very dismissive about having the op. My ACL is snapped completely but no damage to meniscus which is good. I have damaged to the medial ligament for which physio is now helping I hope.

Your problem is that you are seeing a “hip and knee specialist”. What that really means he/ she is an arthroplasty surgeon who will do a bit of other knee work. They are highly likely not to be specialists in ligament work. You need to see a purely knee specialist as they will be much more likely to be familiar with ACL.
Jonathan Bell
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Mr Bell - do you have any recommendations for such a surgeon north of the border in Scotland? Much as I'd love to use your services the distance is a bit of a challenge!

I can find lots of orthopaedic surgeons around Glasgow and Edinburgh but few who specialise purely in knees. Prof. Mackay is frequently mentioned but he does not work with my insurance company (AXA).

Any recommendations would are very useful as the list of surgeons is long and my knowledge of their abilities and specialisms is short! I have a complex history of multiple ligament and revision surgery (and consulted yourself a few years back), the knee has become more unstable, painful and is now impacting daily life so I need to revisit the surgical option.
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Hi - sorry, late to the party in this one, but saw you are a fellow yellow belly so wanted to chip in
I was told too old at 39 (seriously!), fought like hell for it and had the surgery done at the excellent Barlborough clinic, takes about 35 mins from Hykeham, will be a bit longer for you. Good luck x
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zebra1922 wrote:
Mr Bell - do you have any recommendations for such a surgeon north of the border in Scotland? Much as I'd love to use your services the distance is a bit of a challenge!

I can find lots of orthopaedic surgeons around Glasgow and Edinburgh but few who specialise purely in knees. Prof. Mackay is frequently mentioned but he does not work with my insurance company (AXA).

Any recommendations would are very useful as the list of surgeons is long and my knowledge of their abilities and specialisms is short! I have a complex history of multiple ligament and revision surgery (and consulted yourself a few years back), the knee has become more unstable, painful and is now impacting daily life so I need to revisit the surgical option.


I got mine done by Bill Leach at the Nuffield in Glasgow. He was very highly recommended to me at the time and I can only confirm that from my experience.

https://www.nuffieldhealth.com/consultants/mr-william-leach

I was 40 at the time and he echoed what Jonathan Bell says above about over 40s. Pointing out that a 40 year old cruciate in a person who's led an active life has had a lot of wear and tear and that post surgery you've then got a brand new one.
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I started injuring my left knee aged 30 and have had 8 separate problems since - I am now 70! I had various ligament tweeks but the ACL tore completely when I was 55 and I had it repaired by John Keating at Spire Murrayfield in Edinburgh. I paid for the package including 9 months physio as the NHS waiting list was too long and I would miss a season of skiing. Since then I have also had a tibial plateau fracture (just a hairline crack - no weight bearing for a few weeks) and torn cartilage which was cleaned up in 2018 when I was 69. I tease the local orthopaedic department that I keep them in business! I wear a CTi brace for skiing and Scottish country dancing as my knee doesn't like twisting movements but it is fine for hiking and cycling. I trekked half way to Everest Base Camp in April this year - deliberately just to there as the second part has very spartan accommodation. I can ski blue runs without the brace but that isn't much fun. I like reds or blacks and skiing moguls as I used to judge international mogul skiing. Hopefully Rachel will get someone to operate on her knee. Good luck.
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Hi thanks for the message I have just had my consultation again with a non skiing consultant who has now said wait 6 more months as my knee is looking good due to my rehab.
So I'm going to try it out and ski, it doesn't collapse anymore and if I find that I have any problems I'm straight to discussing going private.
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@Rachelljtaylor, I would personally recommend a hinges brace if skiing without an ACL. If it collapses it can do a lot of damage to your cartilage (know from very painful first hand experience and I still had half my reconstructed ACL left but it was still unstable while sprinting)
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