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Moving Forward On Two New (Conformis) Knees

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Pre-Op Area' started by PoetryChef, Aug 24, 2017.

  1. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef senior
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    Goodness! Two weeks from today I will be in recovery for the first of my two knee replacements. I am beginning to settle into the idea of recovery. I'm sure the knees will be knocking (ugh, terrible pun) come surgery day. Perhaps they will have mercy with a Valium to ease the nerves that morning.

    I just sent the nurse for my OS a rather long list of questions regarding my surgery experience. I guess when it is all said and done I am just ready to get home which will happen after Thanksgiving. If you have been following my thread you know I will spend a bit of time with my parents for the initial grueling part of recovery. My mother was a cardiac nurse at Duke and will take good care of me. My other half is a chef and will make sure I have what I need in that department.

    Today I ordered ten pounds of grass fed beef bones to make a lovely two-day-simmered bone broth for recovery. That and Arnica (and ice, elevation and taking meds as prescribed) are my secret weapons.

    I purchased a snuggly soft electric twin blanket, a bed tray, a husband pillow (excellent idea @SpaceGirl), a walking cane suggested by home pt, and am in process of buying a vintage used red recliner for my bedroom--my favorite super power color. I'll need my super powers to get through these two bionic leg surgeries and recovery.

    In short, I am optimistic and scared. A friend and her husband are actually getting their own HGTV show which will premier the night before my first surgery. I'll watch that, get a nice hot shower, put on new jammies and awaken to be at the hospital at 5:30 a.m.(it shares the parking lot of the Marriott where my parents have reserved a suite for the week. My mom is going to be watching like a hawk. No doubt about that.)

    Things bothering me:
    The thought of tourniquets times 2
    I have not watched a video of this surgery--I would wimp out for sure.
    The long drive home
    Will the pain be manageable?
    Balancing PT
    Nausea, etc. from anesthesia times two
    Oh, and the thought of going through it again in 48 hours. The times two part of this.
     
  2. Teri59

    Teri59 member

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    @PoetryChef It sounds like you really have things ready. You are also prepping your mind as well. You will do awesome.
    When it comes to the surgery itself, the anesthesiologist told me he had a special medication for me. He first gave me medication to keep me from getting sick. Then gave me what he nicknamed "I don't care juice". I am sure they will have something ready if needed. I was out before I knew what hit. I woke up in recovery with nurses standing close by.
    I was given a series of medications fairly close together. I was out. I didn't not feel anything, know anything, or see anything.
    Positive attitude is a great thing. It will keep you moving in the right direction.
    You will do great!!
    Teri
     
  3. Jockette

    Jockette FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    On the tourniquet part, I had one and was only a little sore from it afterwards.

    My voice was raspy that evening and when I commented on that to a nurse, she said I’d had a tube down my throat. That cleared up quickly, too.

    Another thing, I had trouble urinating after surgery and they used a catheter in the middle of the night, just once and took it out right away. The nurse was so nice, she was gentle and apologized for having to do it, but it wasn’t bad at all and I felt so much better after! They said it was from the anesthesia.

    I had an excellent hospital stay, great nurses, PT that only took me for walks, no exercises and even cut a walk short because he didn’t like the way I looked, he kept asking if I felt light headed. I didn’t but he took my blood pressure anyway and it was low enough that he stopped the session. He was concerned but my surgeon was not, he said anesthesia and pain medication can lower blood pressure temporarily.

    Even the food was tasty, and I had a private room, too.

    The hospital was the best part of my recovery!
     
  4. SusieShoes

    SusieShoes FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    You’ll do fine. :) As Teri said, you’re prepared, including mentally. I figure you ask questions because you are hoping for answers, so...

    Tourniquets. Some people get tourniquet bruising, and some don’t. I didn’t. Neither leg. Don’t know why. But these bruises go away just like the bruising you will also get on your operated leg. I did get those bruises from knee to foot.

    Watching video of surgery. If you’re squeamish, probably better not.

    Will your pain be manageable on your long drive home. Probably. You’ll have good drugs, or should have them. I found the pain worst when moving —getting in and out of bed, walking to the bathroom, getting up and down on the toilet. While resting, the pain wasn’t that bad. At least, that was my experience. If you can rest in the car the whole way (no bathroom breaks), you should find it bearable. Do some bendies here and there during the ride to help combat the stiffness.

    Balancing PT. Read the guidelines and use them. If it hurts, don’t do it. Listen to your knees. If something makes them scream (“Pain! Stop!”) stop doing it. You are —really, you are— in control.

    Nausea. Talk with your doctor about this. Let him know it’s a serious concern for you. There are medications that can help.

    Doing it again. I hear you. :sorry: I wouldn’t want to do it again. However, you will, so take comfort in the knowledge you will at least have it over with early. Many people wait a few months, at which point they’re feeling lots better and have to revisit the whole thing. :flabber:

    I love your plans for the eve of surgery!
     
  5. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef senior
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    @Teri59, they gave me that same drug prior to my hysterectomy in 2014 only they called it the "I don't give a damn drug." That was the last thing I remembered and then the recovery room. Amazing that I was sent home that same morning after being able to urinate. Isn't medicine fascinating?

    I do hope that I am mentally preparing. I have begun to take post-op purchases to the place where I will stay for the first few weeks. The hospital bed and lift chair are to be delivered next Friday. I'll be sure to make that bed and leave it low to the ground ready for me and two new knees.

    How are you getting along after returning to work. Have you managed to be properly elevated?
     
  6. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef senior
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    @Jockette, what type of anesthesia were you given. I understand they will give me a catheter for the surgery and it is generally removed the next morning. Since I am having my knees done one day apart I am unsure if they will remove it or wait until the 2nd knee is done.

    I sure hope I get a private room. Nearly impossible to sleep with all the activity going on.

    How is your knee progressing?
     
  7. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef senior
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    @SusieShoes, very cool that you are a writer.:thumb:

    I do hope to get a good amount of rest the first few weeks being very careful to treat my knees with good care and respect. I read somewhere to be sure to get up every couple of hours for bathroom and then follow the mantras. I understand the home PT person scheduled to work with me suggests to ice for short amounts of time because if you ice longer the legs will get stiff. I think I am going to ice for longer than 20 minutes for sure.

    What did you use for a raised toilet seat? Too many to choose from. I know we should have handles to help us up and down but outside of that I am clueless.
     
  8. Jockette

    Jockette FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    I had general anesthesia and a block in the knee area. I did not have a catheter during surgery.

    I was thrilled with the private room because I do not like TV and was worried I’d have a roommate who would want it on all the time! The TV was on when they wheeled me into the room, I immediately asked them to turn it off and it did not go back on until after I left.

    Even with a private room there is still a lot of activity and they come in and out at all hours! I only spent one night in the hospital and then was discharged about 8:30 pm the next evening.

    I would think any raised toilet seat will be fine. I got mine at Walmart. Mine does not have handles, but they would be very nice to have. I have a corner garden tub which has higher sides than a normal tub, so that was handy to use to push myself up, at least on my left side. ( and that’s the only thing that tub is useful for, oh and the grandchildren like to take baths in it, other than that it’s a waste of space!)

    My knee is coming along, but I’m one of the slow ones. I had a set back in July and it was 2 months before I improved again. I had a partial. Two of my friends had totals after me and they are doing things I still struggle with. So you never know how things will go and/or how you will heal.

    I wish I had found this forum before surgery! I would have done things differently at PT if I’d known better. I wouldn’t have let them hurt me like I did, but I thought that’s how it had to be. If there’s a next time, I will not be going to PT!
     
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  9. SusieShoes

    SusieShoes FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    I have comfort height toilets at home, so rather than a raised seat I bought toilet rails. Just the handles, basically. Mine was a framework, very sturdy, that made getting down and up from the toilet easier. My mom has a raised seat. She’s still using it, being elderly now.

    For buying anything on Amazon (or anywhere), I read the reviews. First the bad ones —are there consistent complaints— and then the good ones. Reviews can point out pluses or flaws you find important. Pay attention to dimensions: round seats vs. elongated might matter.
     
  10. Jockette

    Jockette FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    @SusieShoes I’m with your mom, I’m not giving up my raised seat, ever!

    Unless, of course, we have to replace this toilet, which will be replaced with the comfort height ones, like we had in all the bathrooms in our previous house.
     
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  11. Teri59

    Teri59 member

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    Good Morning @PoetryChef !! Yes indeed you are mentally preparing. You also have a positive attitude. That goes a very long way.

    I decided to wait the extra week before going back to work. I go back this coming Monday. I have taken this week to work on strengthening the legs, stretches and exercising. I see the OS on the first.

    I didn't have a catheter. I also had a private room. I went home the next day.
    I also told PT when I was done. I told them on the first day of that last week. I did not wait for them to decide when I was done.
     
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  12. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef senior
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    @Teri59, how long did you do PT?
     
  13. Teri59

    Teri59 member

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    I did PT 3 times a week for 4 weeks. What I looked for was being at the point of confidence in doing the exercises and stretches to get me to the good ROM. ROM is different for everyone. I set a personal goal. I was very close when I told them I was done. The PT assistant was honest with me and told me she didn't have to do anything. I was already doing it. They tried to convince me to do out patient PT somewhere. I was firm in telling them no. I did not need it. I know I don't. I am at a 0 and close to 120 right now. When she left I was at a 3 and 115. I have measured myself and I know I am off a little. I also have a stationary bike and a Gazelle Edge ( Eliptical). I haven't started on the Gazelle yet.
     
  14. SpaceGirl

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    Good Morning!

    I hope you like your husband pillow! I was searching and searching for something tall enough to work. I am going to order mine this week! I am glad you're getting everything organized and ready for your post op living and so glad you have your family to help assist you after. Hope you have a wonderful Thursday!
     
  15. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef senior
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    Yaaaay! @SpaceGirl, my husband is on the way. Oh, how I do hope he is tall. Wink, wink. Now to break that news to my boyfriend. :holysheep:. Sounds like a plot for @SusieShoes Woman lies crippled in bed with her husband when suddenly her boyfriend comes home. :rotfl:
     
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    Last edited: Oct 26, 2017
  16. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef senior
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    Twelve more days. Up late last night organizing the guest room. Another place to nest. Still trying to have script filled for long-acting medication. Insurance approval can be so slooooow. Now to order a few more items from Amazon and all is well in the spending money department--that is until the doctor bills start rolling in. :martini: Ugh, then cheers!

    And, off to get a re-do on my recent haircut. Need a little more taken off the top. No proper Southern woman gets bilateral knee replacement without a proper haircut and a new nightgown. :)

    Quote of the day--on overcoming fear:

    “Saw a little girl touch a big bug and shout, "I conquered my fear! YES!" and calmly walk away. I was inspired.” --Nathan Fillion
     
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    Last edited: Oct 26, 2017
  17. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef senior
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    'Tis the season to beware of vampires. More blood draws. My surgeon is presently engaged in a duel with my insurance company regarding post-op pain meds. I sure hope he kicks them where it counts. Yes, I will need them and no thanks to the more affordable one I 'm allergic to. :headbang:
     
  18. SpaceGirl

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    Hahah yes that is a perfect story for @SusieShoes to write! lol

    Sorry you're having such trouble with your insurance and meds! Life should not be this difficult, ya know? We pay for insurance but god forbid you need to use it, they act like we owe them because they are covering us. I am like hello??? I do pay you!

    You'll have to post a pic of your new hair cut! I will likely get one before my surgery as well. Did you try to work out the van travel seating situation yet? I still have yet to see if our van seat folds down in the front. It's on my list to do this weekend, well ok, my honey do list, for my honey. :)
     
  19. PoetryChef

    PoetryChef senior
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    What seems so strange is that they have already filled the script for fast-acting Nucynta but are determining if they will approve the slow-release of the same drug. My surgeon is involved marking the matter as urgent. Unfortunately, they say it may take up to 14 days to approve or deny. Argh!

    Seven more work days. Seven days. Omg. This is truly happening. My boss (lovingly) says he is not going to sign off on my absence. Many customers have offered to come sit with me. My cooking with kids parents have offered to bring meals over. So easy to see the goodness in people right now. :console2:
     
  20. Jockette

    Jockette FORUM ADVISOR Forum Advisor

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    I live in a 55+ Community and friends brought us meals for over a week. It was so nice! Most meals were enough that there were left overs. ( some were enough we could have had a party!)
     
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