Saturday, July 7, 2012

Diary of a New Knee - Part 8 - Forewarned?

After yesterday's torture session, my personal physical torturer, Allison, told me next week we were going to get me on my stomach on the bed and work on bending my knee that way. I'm not sure she should have told me!

Copyright 2008-2012, ACK, for Generational

Friday, July 6, 2012

Diary of a New Knee - Part 7 - The Staple remover

Yesterday, I got the staples removed from my incision. I am not a squeamish person, but some of those staples felt like they were imbedded all the way to the back of my leg, instead of being confined to my knee. But all 26 of the suckers are gone and are now replaced by 6 steri-strips. Now when I look at my leg, I don't feel like it is as sore looking. And that one staple that stood up at an odd angle - gone!

Therapy is going pretty well. Allison, my personal physical torturer, is working my knee hard to get the bend back. Believe me, I miss being able to bend it normally and scoot around in my desk chair.

Now if the outside temps would ease a bit ...

Copyright 2008-2012, ACK, for Generational

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Diary of a New Knee - Part 6

Up early again today and getting ready to straighten out whether or not I do have an 8:45 am doctor's appointment. Yesterday, I spent some time on the phone with the 5th floor nursing manager discussing the good and bad parts of my hospital stay. It was really good to get some feedback from the hospital on the email that I sent them when I got home.

Last night I finished with the self injection blood thinner. Yay! While my diabetes is not under good control right now, I hope that I never get to the point where I have to inject myself. I've had enough of that.

Copyright 2008-2012, ACK, for Generational

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Diary of a New Knee - Part 5 - MEDS

Yes, Percocet is my friend. It's gotten me through some very rough times in the last 9 days. Having said that, I'm taking less of it every day, which makes me really happy. Mostly it is necessary prior to therapy sessions. Those of you who have experienced major replacement surgery get this. Our therapists aren't hanging around to hurt us, but to help us get our mobility back. And believe me, that is what I really want.

One of the things I learned in the hospital, was how to inject a blood thinner into my abdomen on a daily basis. This is not really a very pleasant experience and I only have two more nights to self-inject. After that, I'll be taking a dose of aspirin to continue to help fight blood clots. Wow, I am looking forward to that.

Copyright 2008-2012, ACK, for Generational

Monday, July 2, 2012

Diary of a New Knee - Part Four - Logistics

Can you imagine the number of events in our daily lives that we take for granted?  Bending over to tie one's shoe; getting in and out of bed or a chair;  making a trip to the kitchen; sitting comfortably on a commode. This last one about did me in and often reduced me to tears because a) the toilets in this house are too low; and b) the bar on the bedside commode dug into the back of my knee or thigh making it difficult to do what I wanted.

Yesterday, I added getting in and out of the car. My knee does not yet bend like it did before and the seat was just a little too high so that the edge of the seat sent shooting pains into my thigh and bending the knee to get it in the car .... well.

However I did get out for about a 15 minute trip around town. In 100+ heat with the a/c blasting away. It felt good to come home!

Copyright 2008-2012, ACK, for Generational

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Diary of a New Knee - Part Three

Well, I have been home a week, but it took some prep to get me there. First of all, on the day of discharge, PT came and walked me 100 feet down the hallway to the stairwell and showed me how to climb 3 stairs. And then climb down three steps and 100 feet back to my room.

Discharge was a fiasco, with the discharge nurse having me sign someone else's chart. Down to the main entrance in 95+ degree heat in the bright sunlight and carefully into my Odyssey and home. I knew the real work would begin the next day, but that first night was a comfort to be in my own bed with my husband stretched out next to me.

The next day, Monday, I started physical therapy at home with my therapist Allison. She is really good at her job, and doesn't seem to mind inflicting pain. Which is necessary to break through any scar tissue resulting from the surgery. She comes three days a week and then gives me homework to do. The hardest one is laying on my back and lifting my right leg. I fail tremendously at this one. The rest are coming easier.

Today, I felt confident enough to have hubs put the wheels on the walker. I'm getting around so much faster. Until it was time to make a bathroom visit, at which time we discovered the walker would not fit through the door. Hopefully I will graduate to a cane soon, which will make things even easier?

Copyright 2008-2012, ACK, for Generational