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Knee & Hip Problems Message Board

Knee & Hip Problems Board Index

Hi Shirley,

In your case, I would DEFINITELY HAVE TO AGREE WITH YOU! As you probably noted in my previous posts in this thread, the ONLY reason I had to go to a rehab/skilled nursing facility for my first TKR (right knee 4/5/11), was that my surgeon ALSO had to do an arthroscopy on my left knee during the same surgery because, a month before that surgery, I had developed a compensating meniscal tear AND (discovered during the scope) a TORN ACL! Since I live alone too, and had a total of 17 steps to navigate in my upstairs garden apartment (3 porch and 14 inside my apt.), my insurance company AND my surgeon felt it was safer for me to go to a facility first to learn to navigate the stairs AND get occupational therapy for dealing with "Activities of daily living". Though I hated the place I had to go to because it was in a nursing home and they didn't separate out the temporary rehab patients on the unit from the permanent, elderly and unfortunately dementia addled residents, it got pretty depressing even for the week that I was there! But the PT and OT staffs were great! My physical therapist there had me walking with a cane and navigating stairs the FIRST DAY OF PT!! (I used a walker during the weekend that I was there since I got transferred late on a Friday afternoon and there was no PT on the one weekend I was there. - Didn't matter anyhow since I was sick with post anesthesia nausea the entire weekend - it took till that Sunday night for me to need my last injection of anti-nausea med!)

For my second TKR this past March (3/23/12) on my left knee, I told my surgeon that I wanted to go straight home this time with visiting nurse services and my own physical therapist coming to my apartment. Turns out, the Ortho Unit at the hospital where I had both TKRs, had started an "in house" group physical therapy program at the beginning of March (just in time for MY surgery!) with the goal of sending MOST of my surgeon's patients straight home. (He's Chief of Orthopedic Surgery/Joint Replacement at my hospital.) The only patients who had to go to a rehab place were those two or three who were having both knees done during the same hospital admission, a few days apart. And since I was only having ONE TKR this time, my insurance would NOT have allowed me to go to a rehab place even if I HAD wanted to, since I already had ONE stable replaced knee (right one) from the year before.

Also, as I may have noted in my other posts in this thread, I was SO MOTIVATED to get this left TKR over and done with, that I told my surgeon that if I got to my Ortho Unit room early enough in the afternoon after surgery and Recovery Room, that I was going to get up and walk on the walker the same day of surgery! AND I DID - 200 FEET ON THE WALKER THE SAME DAY OF SURGERY!!!! My surgeon was in the O.R. with other cases the rest of the day after mine which was the first case, so that no one had the chance to tell him how far I had walked that day. When he came on rounds that Sunday, two days later (my surgery was on a Friday), he was so thrilled and astounded that I walked that much the day of surgery, that he nicknamed me "Rascal" for always being on the go during my hospital stay!! That's his new nickname for me now when I see him in his office for checkups on the left knee!! - He also calls me his "A#1 FAVORITE PATIENT" at pretty much every office visit. I guess my doctor/patient relationship with him is a "mutual admiration" deal, since he has had great respect for my being a real trouper and almost never complaining throughout the past two years since I came back under his care in October of 2010! In turn, I consider HIM my MEDICAL HERO for what he has given back to me with his surgical skills - return to FULL MOBILITY WITHOUT PAIN!! He is not only one of the most skilled Ortho surgeons in the country, but probably the kindest, most caring surgeon I have EVER HAD IN MY ENTIRE LIFE! And I've had quite a number of surgeries over my life to date.

Hope things are going well for you since your hip replacements and that they are serving you well WITHOUT PAIN!!! I know I am thrilled to have had excellent outcomes on both my knee replacement surgeries and I pretty much am completely healed with the left TKR after just TWO MONTHS OF THERAPY!!!

All the best,

Carol W. (CPW2012)

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