I hate to be a bragger, but I think I am doing pretty well in recovering from this knee replacement surgery. I get around pretty well now, just barely leaning on the walker. I can bend the knee past the 60 degree angle mark, I can sit up for at least a half hour before my lower leg feels uncomfortable.
I have even dabbled in a bit of housework — cleaning the kitchen this morning and folding laundry yesterday. I realize it’s an entrance to an alternative universe when doing household chores is a pleasure, but you appreciate accomplishing mundane things when they achieve a degree of difficulty.
The only concern I have is managing pain. For most of the day, the aching in my knee and leg is equal to what it was before the surgery. But every few hours, the throbbing begins. It’s deep and it’s persistant and the only relief is a couple of Percocet tablets, some deep cleansing breathes and a strategically placed bag of frozen veggies.
The hours in between the throbbing episodes is getting longer; when I first came home it was every four hours on the dot. Now I can go seven to 10 hours between doses. The doc wrote a script yesterday for a muscle relaxer and that has greatly relieved a cramp that had settled in my right calf.
I don’t like taking all these drugs, but according to my doctor pain management is key to my recovery.
Everyone warned me before this surgery that this is one of the most painful procedures I am likely to endure. It got so tedious hearing people predict pain of epic proportions that I was tempted to junk punch the next pain-sayer. And yes, this hurts like a mofo. But it’s only made me cry twice and I that’s a lot less than I thought it would.
With a little chemical help and a lot of physical therapy and activity, I think I am handling it like a big, brave girl.
As I sit here in my favorite recliner — a purchase we made the weekend before the surgery and the most comfortable seat in the house for my knee — I am virtually pain free. If I had to evaluate the constant discomfort before surgery with the occasional intense pain after the surgery, I would say this has definitely been worth it, even if I have to take some hard core painkillers for a while.