Monday, May 5, 2014

The Brace is OFF!

I obviously am having trouble containing my enthusiasm! Today, I had my second post-op visit with my surgeon, Dr. H. I'm almost at 5 weeks post surgery and I was really excited for this visit to get some flexion on my brace and be able to put weight on my leg again. I was shocked when Dr. H told me I no longer needed my brace- my first thought was that I was getting a different one, but he said, to my joy, that I no longer had to wear a brace at all. He also said I could be fully weight bearing and bend my leg whenever and how ever much I want. The only catch? I still need to use my crutches, but I can put my left leg down which is a lot easier (though I will miss all the calories I burned & my new arm muscles).

Suffice to say that this was the best day I have had in a long time. I have been a little down recently with my rehab not progressing to the degree that my doctor and PT would like, and I was only hoping that I wouldn't be stuck in a straight leg brace anymore. The thought that I would have nothing on my knee never even crossed my mind. I still have a long road ahead- I'm probably only about 30% of normal, I have little to no quad muscles (and I get a neuro stimulator this week), and bending my knee usually leads to excruciating pain. However, this is a huge step forward and a huge improvement. Allowing my leg to be bent all day will lessen the stiffness and make hitting 90 degrees  (and farther) that much easier. And, putting weight on my leg as I walk will help wake my quads up.

I know I have expressed my gratitude many times, and I'm sure my doctor or PT will never see this,  but they are my heroes. Prior to surgery, my doctor could easily dislocate my knee with his hands if he was so inclined. Today, he showed me that my kneecap barely moves. It truly is a second chance with a new knee and I could not be more appreciative.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Teresa...Glad to read your story and how well you are doing.... I am on the other side of that darkness and not as well as you. I am certain our ages are spread apart, which can factor in the healing and speed of it...but wow, what a MONSTER of a year I have had.... And no where near your recovery. But I kindave had 2 big ones into one, All done at UVA in Charlottesville VA. Avid, Hiker, gym lover, very active seemingly being disabled in many ways now. The surgery itself was successful, a mal aligned up and over kneecap, but I began with a torn meniscus, then the BIG surgery , then 6 mths later had another meniscus tear,,,...was having a lot of pain and the hardware was getting painful so surgery x 3 happened in a little over a year. I had the MPFL recon with Hamstring autograft. So instead of making a ligament to hold that cap over, they harvested my own hamstring for it. then we did a Tibial tubercle osteotomy...basically sawing the upper end of my shin bone so the new cap can be moved down...grafted then screwed into place.....I am with daily pain no matter how hard I try to fight it, mornings are terrible now and each night still ends in recliner with gel ice pack.....

    So, I wanted to say how happy I am for you...for someone....that did ok with this and has their life back in control.

    I am still waiting on my chance to.

    My last surg was mid Aug, so I am soon to finish up rehab and have my butt in the gym pool at least 3 times a week working hard in the ortho pool .

    Thought I would share my lil journey with you...since you did for all others.
    And this version is very slimmed down and shortened hahah

    Happy Thanksgiving!