On Tuesday I joined a group of about 8 other "bum knee" people for our "Total Knee Replacement Arthroplasty Pre-Op Class" given by the Physical Therapy and Nursing Departments at Kaiser Permanente. It's a nice way to get all the instructions for how to prepare for surgery (mine is scheduled for the day after Easter, the 21st) before the patient has to be able to actually follow the instructions. It gives patients the opportunity to ask questions and have some of their fears alleviated. For me it was interesting to see the improvements that have been made in the treatment of hospitalized patients, in general, and specifically from the standpoint of the Orthopedic patient who'll not only be physically compromised and in pain, but in a hospital environment with its inherent discomforts and exposure to foreign bacteria. [Any time it's necessary to open a bone in a surgical process, it leaves the patient particularly vulnerable to infection and complication]. The thrust these days is to involve the hospitalized patient in his own treatment and get him out of the hospital as soon as possible. We've 'learned' how to deal with those germs around our own homes (mostly it's our immune systems that have built defenses to the germs in our homes); but hospitals are public places, housing patients with all kinds of maladies; it's possible for there to be a germ that our immune system hasn't yet built a defense! From where I 'm living, at Bob and Judy's ranch, it's a 75-mile drive to the South Sacramento Kaiser Permanente Hospital; fortunately all Physical Therapy after surgery will be at a Kaiser facility only about 4 miles from my daughter's house.
I'll 'move in' to my daughter's house probably a couple of days before surgery after I pack what I'll need and get Floribunda ready to sit patiently and wait for Lacy, Eleanor and I to return. The problem for me in moving back into the rig won't be the stairs I'm sure, but the bending, crawling, etc. that must occur to clean and operate the vagabond lifestyle. Who knows when I'll have that kind of mobility. I'm diligently doing the pre-op exercises to build as much strength and breathing power before the surgery as I can, so I'll be ready to tackle the rehabilitation.
This week I ordered a pedal exerciser that I'll be able to use for flexibility and strength of my legs and arms after surgery
This is a picture of before and after total knee reconstruction. I've had lots of experience with this surgery - but only from the "other side of the knife!!"
I stopped taking the miracle medication called Celebrex last Monday as it "thins the blood" and makes bleeding more of a problem after surgery; so, not only does my knee hurt like crazy, but all my other areas of arthritis are inflamed. Driving Miss Petunia has become very uncomfortable, mainly because she doesn't have 'cruise control' so I have to use my right foot all the time I'm driving; and arthritis in my spine (some due to spinal surgery several years ago) has also flared up. So, the long and short of it is that I'm not driving any distance and things like shopping have gone by the wayside.
I 'moved' into the guest room at Bob and Judy's for the weekend because my daughter-in-law, Alice, and my granddaughters, Malia and Samantha, are staying in Floribunda; they're here for a soccer tournament. Malia will play and Samantha, with her broken leg, will be a spectator.
I'm making a chili feed for this evening and we'll all play Mexican Train Dominoes. It's so fun being able to include the girls (14) in the adult game. And, I'm sure they'll be better at it than I am!