Sunday, September 18, 2011

Day 1 and Day 2 Post-Op

More Day 1: So I guess I really wasn't totally miserable. I couldn't feel my leg at all, definitely a good thing. Thursday evening, I had eaten a turkey sandwich, a bag of potato chips, and lots of Sprite. I only barfed once, just after getting into recovery. Friday morning I had a bagel, applesauce, and milk. The milk made me very happy, because that is seriously ALL I drink when I have my own way. :) The meds had knocked me out overnight, but nurses came in regularly to make sure I hadn't started jumping on the bed (haha).
Getting in the car did make me nervous however. When I first sat up that morning I was very dizzy, but I was told to just sit on the side of the bed for a few minutes. I used crutches to get to the wheelchair, only about three steps, and they wheeled me to the car. Our minivan was right next to the sliding doors, so that was easy (picturing a red Staples button). I slid in behind the drivers seat, and pulled myself across so that I was behind the passenger seat. My leg was stretched across, and we propped it up in the middle with pillows and duffel bags.
We had decided before hand to go to my grandparent's house for the weekend, because there are stairs no matter which way you go at our house. I used crutches to get in, and sat right down on the sofa. I was feeling pretty good, so I had some applesauce and pudding. We were worried about nausea, so we had had them give me some nausea medication through the IV. Luckily, not having full anesthesia seemed to help that, though Saturday was tougher. But that's later.
Also when we got home I was told to start using the CPM machine pretty soon. I have to say, I was terrified of moving the leg in any way, much less bending it. But we got it in there, and I started on ten degrees. It was painful, but only on the side, where the reconstruction incisions were. The nerve block only blocked one of the three nerves in my leg, covering only the osteotomy, so from the beginning I could feel the inside of my knee. My directions were to use the machine at least eight hours a day, more if I could. I ended up sleeping with it at ten degrees Friday night.
DAY 2: I woke up Saturday morning feeling okay. I hadn't sat up yet, and that would be the real test, but staring at the ceiling wasn't horrible. Every four hours overnight I had taken two Oxicodone. For those of you that have been lucky enough to never had it, it One of these babies is enough to make you dizzy, nauseous, and not be able to concentrate. Two of them, well, let's just say I couldn't even tell which way was up. So we sat me up, and within seconds I was blacking out and puking all at the same time. I lay back down, and stayed that way until Dad made it over later on. That time it was even worse, but I didn't barf again afterward. Using crutches, I moved to the living room, where I stayed for the rest of the day. There was a football game on that day, so my brother and Dad stayed for that. Later that evening, the Oxicodones really kicked in, and my parents used it for a teaching moment, saying this is what a hangover and a high feel like. I will never, ever touch the stuff. That was my Saturday, nothing overly exciting. I used the CPM for around ten hours, though it was set relatively low. The key with that is just not to let the leg stiffen up. If it does, it's hell. At the top, there's a picture of my x-ray, showing two of the four screws in my leg. Those are the osteotomy screws, holding together my tibia. Really screwed up, now, aren't I? ;)

Curly Girl Takes Over

I'm Curly Girl, and I'm taking over Mum's blog. On September 15, 2011, and I had a MPFL reconstruction and a Tibial Tubercle Osteotomy. I needed the surgery because I have no trochlear groove in my left knee, which resulted in multiple dislocations and subluxations, meaning a partial dislocation. These stretched out my MPFL (the ligament on the inside of the knee) so much it was barely visible. Long story short, the doctor screwed in a donor hamstring over my MPFL, and moved a bit of my tibia bone. I have four screws, two of which are made of calcium and will dissolve over time. Cool, right? Not really.
Day 1: I was in the hospital until 11 AM on Friday. The nurse showed me everything I needed to know about everything. I had a nerve block, which would make my leg almost completely numb for three days. Because of the numbness, I couldn't lift it, and someone else had to do it for me. We took it out this morning, and I can feel the leg now. Let me just say, pain meds are my friends. I also have a CPM machine which makes me bend the leg. The first week I am supposed to get to 40 degrees, and I made it to 30 this afternoon. I never thought something so simple would be so hard, but I made it. And if you think I couldn't possibly fit anything else on my leg, think again. The Tens machine uses electrical impulses to stimulate muscles and help with pain control. There is also the Polar Care cube, an ice cube which hooks up to my leg and keeps swelling down. I also have a large brace and many wrappings (I look like a mummy), but they are inconsequential.