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Shaping The Conversation: Bilateral Total Knee Joint Replacement Surgery

on 6 February, 2016

BTKJRP:  bilateral total knee joint replacement surgery

 

Okay, I am ten days out from the first surgery and I am completely amazed at how well I feel and how well I feel I am doing!

There was a short period of time where out of pain and frustration and not enough sleep, I did question my sanity. Or that I had any at all! Of course when I woke up after accidentally ripping out my nerve block and seeing my leg more black than blue and wondering if I might ever bend my knee again I can see where it might be easy to question that decision. But getting the pain medication right, good fitting compression stockings and a few back-to-back nights of solid sleep has made all the difference.

Actually, the one thing that I think has had the most impact is physical therapy. Not only doing it, but doing it right. And not pushing too hard. From what I can tell, I am not only staying on track with the p.t., but perhaps just slightly ahead. It was originally part of the plan, though, that the second knee would have the surgery just a week following the first. There was times that I think that I could have perhaps accomplished it and would have been just that much further into recovery, but now I am seriously glad that I waited any extra week.

This topic will require a lot of discussion, and I want to moderate it. I am sure that there is plenty of medical discussion about the proper time surgically as well as emotionally and psychologically. Consider that most people will be lucky enough to never have to replace a total knee joint (let alone two) nor will most people ever have to experience having one or both replacements just once in their lifetime. And what might be right for one person may be the exact opposite of what is right for another. That’s one reason I want to open this up for discussion and debate.

Another top of discussion is the need and benefits of a really invested support person. Oh, I know that there is a whole team of people in place for my surgeries (and I am still amazed with the level of care that has been afforded me) but having my son around to not only act as an personal advocate, support both mentally, physically and psychologically. To be able to drop the worries of bills, bank accounts and a job to focus primarily on these surgeries is, again, one of those luxuries that everyone is not afforded.

I went on my first couple of “adventures” today- first to Joann’s and then to a couple of thrift stores. I felt pretty confident in my movements and was careful to not over-use my new knee as my “walker” experiences grows. I was astonished by the fact that strangers would go out of their way to assist me and not crowd me or make me feel unsure. I am already very displeased with having to use a walker at such a young age, but I know it is important to use the right tools for the job.

Okay, all of this said, I also have to be diligent about getting proper sleep, nutrition and hydration. And because of my extracurricular activities today, I feel the need to replenish and rest. So, I am off to get a solid’s night sleep.

I’m still shaping the exact purpose of this blog. If you have ideas, questions and/or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you. And of course, photos are always welcome!

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