Wednesday, April 24, 2024

A Little Update on the Knee

The purple lines are registration marks
At PT on April 17, I graduated from the walker to walking on my own--there was no walking stick transition either! I felt the freedom leaving the walker behind! It's been a couple days, I feel a bit unbalanced. Yet, I'm enjoying short walks outside on uneven ground! I do find holding my husband's hand provides the right degree of stability as I walk. After a minute, I can walk on my own. . .until I tire!

April 18th. at the first post op appointment at the surgeon's office, staff removed the waterproof bandage. I finally could see the incision. I snapped a photo because the surgeon had placed tic marks as registration points so that when he sewed me back together tissues were in the neighborhood of where they were before surgery. I have three layers of dissolvable sutures. The steri strips (tape) will come off on their own. 

Evidence of riding the PT bike
I "get" to wear the support stockings for two more weeks. I'll be able to discontinue the aspirin regime at that time too as the highest threat of blood clots will have passed.

I had an X-Ray of my knee. It was cool to see how the metal parts look against my bone!All looked good. I have a
second post op appointment May 23rd. The surgeon will take range of motion (ROM) measurements. The physician's assistant was impressed that I could bend my knee about 110 degrees and that I was a couple degrees short of full extension two weeks after surgery. 

April 19, I rode the bike at PT to the surprise of the staff. At PT, staff worked on my quadriceps muscle. It is slow to engage and then when it engages it is extra slow to disengage. Sometimes, it stays engaged which makes it challenging to step forward! I'm told this is normal. I did hang out in the sewing room for a couple sessions. The session were too long as I had pain and swelling in the

Playing dolls
knee. For future studio forays I'll set the time and limit myself to 30 minutes and follow with 30 minutes on the ice machine.

April 20, my knee was so swollen from doing too much the previous day. I spent the day icing and elevating On the 21st, the swelling had receded enough that I went for a walk outside. My quadricep muscles contracted. I rested and massaged them.. I continued my walk. This sequence repeated itself a number of times until, I heard a pop, felt a twang and then instant pain under the quadriceps that radiated to the ligaments on the outside of my knee down my tibia muscle to my ankle. The pain was sharp and then began to throb. 

My husband Bob had to walk the 50 yards to the house and bring the walker because I was unable to put weight on that leg. I spent the remainder of the day icing and resting the leg. I did finish a couple sessions on the bike. Riding the bike didn't aggravate  the leg pain.

Later that evening, reinforcements arrived at the Portland airport. All the way from London they flew to check on me and my husband. My daughter's partner with his daughter. We are learning how to play a version of paper dolls which is a hoot!

April 22 at my PT appointment, the staff member worked to release the tension in the muscles. I lost five degrees on flexion and seven degrees on extension. I'm told setbacks happen. 

April 23, I had a massage. It was heaven. I was able to lay on my stomach just as I did before surgery. Since I haven't been sewing or spending much time on the lap top, my neck and back have fared well.

April 24 was another PT appointment. Turns out I likely tore my rectus femoris. My knee continues to heal well. It is moving well. While the tear is a set back, it isn't a major issue. I'll be spending some time to strengthen my quadricep muscles. The tear will heal on it's own. As soon as I can put more weight on my leg, I'll move to walking with a cane.


LIttle Penguin Quilts said...

What an adventure, Terry! I'm sorry you had that setback, and hope it heals quickly. Sounds like you have some special helpers there - I bet that is a boost!

Janice Smith said...

Wow! That’s some photo. Glad you have a sweet little visitor!