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Home Alone After Surgery

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Pre-Op Area' started by Celle, Jun 21, 2015.

  1. lite699

    lite699 New Member

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    Is it possible to be alone and handle cpm machine?


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  2. Celle

    Celle Forum Advisor

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    I'll ask @skigirl. I know she had one - but she didn't like it.

    Although some surgeons recommend using a CPM machine, whether you use it or not isn't going to make much difference to your eventual recovery.

    Some people find that it makes them feel less stiff at first, and they like it. Others hate it.
     
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    • hbpeyton18

      hbpeyton18 Junior Member

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      I was on my own after surgery and have managed ok! Couple things to add to everyone's excellent suggestions:

      I knew I wouldn't want to eat after surgery, the meds take away my appetite (which is fine, I've lost 15 pounds- woo!!). I got frozen berries, coconut milk, almonds and spinach to make smoothies in my NutriBullet. And had protein powder- so an easy healthy alternative. Oh and added prune juice when needed!

      I used crutches, so backpack has been key. Have everything under the sun in there, including meds. And found an app to track meds called "mango health". Cause there was no way I could keep track/remember on my own.

      Get the handicapped parking placard!! I resisted initially.. But oh man is it worth it!! Especially as the weather gets nasty.

      And for sure friends stopping by makes life better. And they can bring you things (ice and spinach for me!).


      Heather
      Left knee, 11/30 TKR
       
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      • referee54

        referee54 Moderator

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        Yep---this is a must. It is really helpful especially in the early days of driving. It will help you get closer to the stores, etc; it saves you not only time, but energy, as well.

        You can do as I did---I had one for six months, but I tossed it out when I did not need it anymore---about four months post-BTKR.
         
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        • hbpeyton18

          hbpeyton18 Junior Member

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          Especially with the winter weather. Mine goes through March, which should be well long enough I'm hoping!


          Heather
          Left knee, 11/30 TKR
           
        • kneeper

          kneeper Forum Advisor

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          @lite699 a lot depends on whether you can lift your leg onto it by yourself. For my first knee i couldn't for the first week, for my second I could. But I also had to leave it set up all the time. I found it too heavy to try to move.
          You would probably do ok without it.
           
        • lite699

          lite699 New Member

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          Thank you


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        • iamshrdlu

          iamshrdlu Member

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          I discovered this hospital stay that the nurses had placed me in a "jack knife" position in the bed--where the feet were raised very high. Their beds would only do this when they were raised to the highest point (in the controls on the outside of the bed, where patients could not reach). I made sure that every time I got out of bed for a potty break, that they put me back in that jack knife position. (They normally let you adjust the bed normally-- legs flat, upper half raised.) That made a big difference in pain levels in the hospital, as it kept the leg elevated all day. (My first nurse didn't believe in pain meds, so every little trick helped.) And by keeping the leg in that same position at home (using a foam wedge meant for that purpose), it has kept me more mobile at home so that I can take care of myself better. Another tip, if you don't have someone to help you get up and down, is to place your good leg/foot under your bad leg's ankle, and then use your good leg to lift the bad leg when removing pillows or foam wedges out from under the tender leg. This go round, I also added crutches to my list, as sometimes they just seem to work better, such as when I need to answer the door. So I have my cane, walker, and crutches all placed near my lift recliner, as well as a nice stack of cushions and pillows. With all of that, I am able to get around my house by myself, feed myself, etc. I also made up a check list for meds, because it is so easy to forget if you took them or not. Now I just place a check in the appropriate box as I take a med (such as aspirin). For the pain pills, I just write down the time I took the last one, so then I just look at the last time in the column to see if it is time for another one or not.
           
        • KarriB

          KarriB Forum Advisor

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          As @hbpeyton18 said a backpack is useful or a basket from a dollar store with zip ties will work on a walker and allow you to carry things back and forth from the kitchen etc. While I had a friend come to my house most days in the beginning I found a leg lifter to be invaluable. My other leg is not so good and the leg lifter helped me get into bed, get my leg onto the ottoman and in/out of the car.
          Put some water bottles in the freezer and use those with some water instead of ice cubes if you're using an ice machine to ice your TKR. Water bottles were much easier, stayed cold longer and used less ice.
           
        • kneeper

          kneeper Forum Advisor

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          Very true @iamshrdlu to write down when you took you pain pills when you're on you're own.
           
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          • theresav

            theresav Member

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            I still use alarm on my phone as reminder for medication. Works great.

            left knee 9/21/15
            right knee 11/30/15
             
          • PolarBear60

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            I wasn't supposed to, but I handled mine just fine in the hospital. That said, I would say "It depends." The machine is bulky and awkward. If you're not comfortable handling a 20-30 pound bag of dog food, you might not be comfortable with the CPM.


            Jean

            LTKR (Stryker Triathlon): 21 April 2015
            Right Knee Arthroscopy: 25 July 2006
            Left Knee Arthroscopy: 10 February 2005
             
          • Celle

            Celle Forum Advisor

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            I used my dog's lead/leash as a leg lifter. :)
             
          • lite699

            lite699 New Member

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            Would you recommend renting lift recliner ? BTKR 16 Feb. I will be alone most of the time


            Sent from my iPhone using BoneSmart Forum BTKR Feb 16, 2016
             
          • Josephine

            Josephine NURSE DIRECTOR, BONESMART Administrator

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            Well, yes and no. It's not that big a deal getting to your feet and the activity is good for you anyway, same as getting on and off the toilet. So for that reason I wouldn't recommend it. And besides this, you'll most likely be on top of it within a few days!
             
          • referee54

            referee54 Moderator

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            Not at all. You will be able to get up and out of it---albeit slowly---but it will be good "PT" for you. After your TKR and you are fully recovered, you will be able to do much more of these day-to-day activites without a second thought.
            Yes---I had one as I had my BTKR in November and I needed it when I went out in the winter time; here in Ohio, you can get one for six months; I used mine for about three months and then tore it up. It did come in handy, though, when I began to drive.
             
          • No knees

            No knees New Member

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            All great ideas does anybody have ideas for my cat I have two of them one is older and can take care of himself but the babies a year old drives me crazy plus he only eats wet food on the table of course. My only concern is walking from the dining room to the living room with water to change the cat water. Now how do I get down to clean out the litter boxes?
             
          • Carolina Writer

            Carolina Writer Junior Member

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            Hi @No knees, I've been thinking about the litter box issue too. I have a stool that I'm going to keep nearby so that I can sit for this job. (I'm scheduled for bilateral TKR on April 13). I've used the stool in the past a couple times and managed okay. Hopefully others will chime in with what they've done.
             
          • referee54

            referee54 Moderator

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            I ma not sure how to handle the litter box issue. I did have a BTKR, and it is possible to use a container of water if you place it in a pocket in the walker. Some folks have gizmos where they can hang something on their walkers so that they can carry things on the walker.

            As for the litter box, is it possible for somebody to come in on a regular basis in the early days of recovery and help you with it?

            @Josephine and others have cats and Josephine cam home alone after her TKR's---she can help give you the best advice for that.
             
          • Josephine

            Josephine NURSE DIRECTOR, BONESMART Administrator

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            Why? I'm sure that even with a bilateral you could manage without that. Just have the litter box near the toilet and a long handled scoop!
             

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