Because You Asked….

Posted on: 26 August, 08

The drama of my bum knee continues.  I saw the “new” surgeon today.  It was clear he knew what he was talking about and very familiar with my case.  However, I did not like what he had to say.  In consideration of the squeamish out there, I shall be light on gory details.  Besides, I am the queen of squeamish so I tuned out for much of his very graphic surgery description.  Yep, that’s right sports fans, surgery is in the future, but we all knew that, right?  Wait.  It gets better.  I get have not one, but two surgeries. 

The is trashed.  There is arthritis.  There is almost no cartilage left. The knee cap hangs to one side.  He wants to take it completely apart and put back together.  When I heard the words “saw” and “screws,” I zoned out to the lovely land of denial.  The words “cut the bone” made me temporarily lose my sense of hearing.  Since he is a nice guy, he wants to do an exploratory scope first to see if there is enough good parts left in my knee to rebuild it. 

The scope should be fairly simple with a quick recovery.  If he thinks I am good candidate for the Big Surgery, the recovery will not be so quick.  He will take my knee apart and put it back together with a few additional parts.  It won’t be tiny little scope scars.  It will be big, nasty zipper looking things.  He predicts three months of painful, somewhat incapacitated recovery.  Then three more months of just “gee, this is really annoying.”  Months of crutches and physical therapy.  The boy does not paint a pretty picture. 

Today, he started me on steroid injections.  Under the knee cap.  I can take pain, but I cannot stand needles.  As he was explaining to his resident how to lift the knee cap and get the needle underneath, the room started going dark and I laid down.  He said the muscles would be a better position if I sat up.  I said, “Dude, either I lay down now or fall down when you stick me.  One way or another, I will be fully horizontal for this.  You pick.”  Smart boy that he is, he agreed I should go ahead and get comfy.  Even with the anesthesia first, it hurt like (insert expletive of your choice here). 

I will do a couple more rounds of steroids.  The hope is to reduce the pain enough that I can do some serious physical therapy before surgery.  We are tentatively planning on the scope during spring break and the Big Surgery at the beginning of the summer.  The boys will then be home to be my personal servants because the knee will be immobilized for three weeks. 

In the meantime, I am sporting a lovely new knee brace.  It has a special insert that constantly pushes the knee cap into alignment.  I will be popping NSAIDS like candy.  Ice packs will be applied whenever possible.  While I don’t relish living with the pain for 10 more months, there is no way I can undertake a surgery like this during the school year. 

Ok, enough gory talk.  I won’t say I’m okay with it, because my head is still spinning a bit.  In a day or two, I’ll be fine.  I will have planned out how to deal with the various issues this will cause.  I can handle the pain.  It is the logistics and being so physically limited that are difficult to process at the moment.  I will figure it all out because I always do. 

In the meantime, I shall sew some pants with a slightly wider leg to accommodate my lovely, new, much bulkier knee brace.  I shall sew some baby things for my preggie friends.  I shall sew some doll clothes because they are fun to sew.  I shall have more posts about sewing and less about whining. 


11 Responses to "Because You Asked…."

Oh dear, that is not good news, but then you knew it was inevitable someday. I’m so sorry, but it sounds like you have a good surgeon who knows what he’s doing. And we really need our knees, don’t we? Whine all you want – you are such a trooper!

oh teri 😦

my dad had to have a knee reconstruction maybe 10-15 years ago and if it’s any consolation he said having shingles was worse lol

take care

I was okay until you mentioned the needle under the knee cap. Then it was time for the involuntary shudder and the sudden need to go lie down.

I’ve never really treasured my knees before. They seem so average. Now I appreciate them so much more.

Teri, I am so sorry to hear this. Sounds like you have a good surgeon that will help you and your knee. The line from an old TV show pop into my head, he will rebuild her, he will make her better, faster, etc. (paraphrasing Six Million Dollar Man – do you remember it?).

We have something in common – I pass out anytime the doctor brings out a needle around me!!

ooch ouch… I feel your pain, darlin’ (coming from somone whose ankles are a mess). Have you considered maybe a zippered gusset discreetly added along the inside seam via invisible zipper for when the surgery occurs, then once the ordeal is over, your pants will still look nice with little effort. Or… just switch to skirts for this season… πŸ™‚ Keeping you in my thoughts.

Good luck for the arthroscope, I hope it turns out for the best, lots can be reapaired through knee scopes, (I’m an OR nurse who seems to do a lot of orthopeadics lately, and a lot of knee scopes/replacements!!) and the recovery is much faster. So best wishes and chin up, okay?

Please don’t despair. I had total knee replacement TWENTY years ago and it was a complete success. In my favor, I had no other medical complications to begin with since I was in my very early forties. There have been so many improvements to the technique since then. PROS: no more pain; increased mobility; ability to walk. CONS:unable to sit on floor; steps one at a time. In short, small price to pay. Just make sure you have the best surgeon possible and a good rehab program. In my (and my doctor’s) opinion, the scope is a painful waste of time if you need surgery anyway. God bless.

Eeeuuuuw! chills down my spine time! But if he can make it better and you won’t be in pain anymore, go for it! Keep focused on the end result!
Now, not to brag, but I went to my knee doctor Monday and we’ve put off arthroscopic surgery for a while, as it is not bothering me nearly as much as a few months ago. Eventually I’ll be back to see him, though, as it will eventually get worse. Take care! And, oh, is this your right or left knee? wondering if you can still drive the sewing machine during your recovery LOL!

So sorry to hear it’s going to be so yucky for you. At least your kids are now old enough to really help you and to understand not to argue, fight, and leave big messes. LOL. Can you tell where I’m at right now?? Hope your knee does well over the next school year until surgery time. Sounds like you have a wonderful doc.

As a teenager and in my early 20’s, I had more ‘scopes’ than I can count on both knees before they finally decided what was wrong with my knee caps. Since you’re squeamish, I won’t give any details LOL πŸ™‚ I had them both fixed in 1994/95, 3 months apart and no problems since – the miracles of modern medicine – & you’ve got 13 years more current than that ! After 16 years living on painkillers, it was all worth it to be pain-free. Good Luck.

Ouch! Hope your knee doesn’t bother you too much until you can get your surgery.

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