Ned, that was SO TRUE about the brace. When people saw it, they could not expect me to do the things that they were used to me doing. They were more protective and helpful! So Tricia, use this time to let your bed do what it has to do....heal! Drink lots of water. By the way, did someone get you a female urinal? It will allow you to urinated without squatting. The guys definately have an advantage in that area. But with the urinal, it's an even playing field!!!
Katie, it sounds like you're doing a great job in getting ready for the procedure. As I mentioned in another post, although a paper cup will do the job, a female urinal is really great. I wore tees and shorts the whole time. Using a picker allowed me to more easily pick up my shorts. Wearing pants takes more maneuvering with the PICKER...Don't forget to get one! I would really say that the first 6 weeks are the toughest. Get some good books, bring your computer to bedside if possible, and try to practice getting in a out of bed using the unaffected side. Stay in touch and let us know how you're doing..
Katie, good idea about being as prepared as possible. That's what I did and it made things much easier. I am now 2 weeks post-op to the day and I'll give you my experience to calm your nerves. My surgery was outpatient but I had an option to stay overnight at the hospital. I thought I would be more comfy at home. Looking back, I would stay that night if they give you that option. My 1st night was going to the bathroom every 2 hours. We set up a twin bed in my living room since my bedroom is upstairs. My wife slept on the couch downstairs with me and was up every time I got up to make sure I was OK (bless her heart). You must stay hydrated the best you can. That might get you extra bathroom trips but definitely a necessity to get rid of the anesthesia and heal properly. Take your pain meds consistantly. I took one percocet every 6 hours around the clock for the first 2 days. You want to stay ahead of the pain. Don't play "catch-up" with the pain. After that I only took one percocet at night to help me sleep. I stopped the pain meds after one week. I received my brace on my 1st visit with the Dr. I wore it around and even slept with it on before my surgery to get used to it and even went to the bathroom with it on. Elevated toilet seat a must and I bought handles that attach to the toilet not the seat. That gave me more stability so the seat wouldn't tip to one side. If you can get your brace early that is a bonus. I woke up out of surgery with the brace on. I couldn't take it off (Dr.'s orders) So it is againts my skin and has been that way since surgery. Since I'm not allowed to bend at the waist when I get washed my wife takes one strap off at a time and washes my leg so i don't get any rashes or sweat irritation. I wear nylon shorts everyday since that makes it easier to get them down and up (with a grabber) instead of fighting with sweat pants because you want something loose to wear. Also it's not too hot for the brace. So my leg doesn't sweat. My brace hasn't come off since surgery and you will get used to it. You just have to find comfortable positions around the house. The first few days after surgery aren't too bad. Just continue to get prepared and be thankful that there are surgeons out there who are able to help us. Get the surgery over with and then you'll be on the mend just like the rest of us. Good luck. Hope this helps. dr.q
I met with my naturopath yesterday, very glad I did. Some good tips to remember for people starting recovery. This is a major injury, and your whole body will know it. There are measures you can take to help influence the proper recovery. Your body will require increased vitamins, minerals and proteins. I am considering seeing a specialist that has assisted professional athletes before, with similar injuries, and certain things such as increased oxygen flow or whatever else they do (I am inquiring about it now) has proven to speed up recovery. For the meanwhile, I am increasing my multi vitamin intake, and will do more Ester-C.
A great natural supplement for this is Zyflamend, I took it for a shoulder injury I had, it helped me and after 2 weeks I no longer needed it. Something to consider..
Thanks everyone. My surgery is scheduled for Monday, April 5th. I am SO GLAD I found this site! Very few people around here has ever heard of this injury as being this serious including my brother who is a PA for an orthopaedic surgeon in Lafayette. In their 34 years of practice they have NEVER seen it. He does not think I should have the surgery. I just know my body and I think I will have a better chance for a more active life if I have it done. I know this sounds crazy, but should I sleep and get up out of the bed on my good side? (We have a Kingsize bed and I will need to trade places with my dear hubby as that is his side!) My mother is 86 and has much of the equipment I'll need. She is doing better than me! So I have a grabber, potty chair,and a female urinal. Have any of you used the bedside potty in the beginning? I can see that I would need support on the affected side so as to not tip the thing over. Did any of you dr's tell you to take a mild laxative afterwards? If so, any suggestions? I have been measured for my brace, but it won't be ready until hopefully Friday (Good Friday). The guy custom tuning it hopes to be able to try it on me before surgery. If so, I plan to take it home and get a good feel for it before. I may not have a choice though. Thanks to everyone. Good luck with your continued progress.
Yes, katie. Take a stool softener (colace) before you even go. Be sure to stay hydrated. I never used a bedside potty, didn't need to. Even in the hospital I used the crutches or walker to get to the bathroom. It was a good time to test using the toilet while assisted, in case I got dizzy. As for the bed- we have a king as well. I learned to pull myself up onto the unaffected side and then rolled over so that I was flat. Pull yourself on to the bed, and then roll over on to your back. In the hospital you can pull yourself up with the arm rail, but you won't have that at home (I don't think), so pull yourself forward and then roll. I can't stress enough the importance of drinking plenty of fluids and consider using some more supplements. Calcium/magnesium, Zinc, and extra C and E as well as a multi vit are good for starters. Others on the site can add to that. After 10 days, you can start massaging the site. This will help with scar tissue and keep the tissue more flexible around the incision site.
Katie, Good luck on your surgery. I just had mine and also have a king bed with a husband who had to change sides with me. I now am on the left side of the bed and my bad leg is the right one. Getting up and down isn't too hard; much easier than I thought and I am only 4 days out. I turn to my left side and sort of slide the legs out of the bed. Then I stand on my good leg while I take the crutches. I also have a walker next to the bed which makes a nice stand for the crutches as well as it is great to grip onto when getting up. I am taking stool softener with no results (sorry for the TMI). The guy who did my brace seriously looked like the maintenance man and I found it so strange that he was the one to fit it on me when I was practically naked in the hospital. Oh well. So it goes. I used a bedside potty the first couple of times in the hospital and then quickly moved to the restroom in the hospital. Figured it would be best to practice as well. I have an elevated toilet seat with handles that I don't know how I would do it otherwise. However, I am waiting for my sloped toilet seat to arrive and wish I had paid the really high shipping fees for expedited delivery. A lot of people recommend the sloped seat and I can't wait to have mine. Baby wipes are good to have in the bathroom and now I am figuring out why. The grabber is nice to have as are some night shirts. I don't wear nightgowns to sleep in and had my son go get me a couple. I put an undershirt on under the brace and then the nightshirt over it all. It is nicer to me than shorts or pants because you don't have to deal with that at all. If you have any questions, please post here as people are great and can answer about anything that comes up.
Thanks to both of you. Trisha, tell me more about the sloped toilet. Where do I get it? So you sleep with your good leg to the edge of the bed, right?
Here is a link to one
Just make sure to order the slope on the correct side.
And yes, I sleep with the good leg on the outside of the bed. But order that toilet soon! LOL Shipping charges are really high for express.
T H I S B R A C E I S D R I V I N G M E N U T S ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Seriously I feel anxiety over the stupid thing. Most of the day it doesn't bother me. But at the end of the day it shifts, or my leg swells or something and it drives every last nerve on my leg and waist nuts. I have it off right now as the doc said as long as I was awake and laying where I wouldn't be disturbed, I could take it off here and there. But seriously it is making me crazy. For those who had braces, did they shift in size during the day? I just don't think this thing fits right.