Hello peeps! I have one more week and then it's back to work for me. I'm still using a cane but feel confident when I'm out and about. It's been a hard journey; much more difficult than the first time. My SLE Lupus started to flare a month before surgery. I also found out that I have a blood clotting disorder (one of the many Lupus issues). I had to stop taking my Lupus meds to prepare for the surgery, which didn't help with the flare that I was already having.
Here's a photo diary of the progress, with the most recent photos first. Be warned, the last photo is kind of rough around the edges!
This photo was taken July 16. It pretty much looks the same now. I have a "dimple" when I stand at the beginning of the scar on my quad muscle. It's possible it'll be there forever but it's also possible that it'll go away. I'm so glad I wasn't a person with beautiful legs in the first place!
In this photo you can see where the staples were. I didn't count them when they were in but I'm thinking it was around 23 or so. Physical Therapy was coming to my house twice a week. I really enjoyed my therapist even if she did make me cry a few times.
This photo was taken June 30 - two days after my birthday. Unfortunately I HAD to get this done when I did. I wouldn't choose to have this procedure done in the summer. The heat really played a factor in how I felt. Not to mention being homebound for my birthday and Independence Day. My dad came up on my birthday and brought us lunch and a mini cake. Thanks dad! A bit of bruising but not too bad. How many staple marks do you see?
This was June 27. After taking out the staples they put this tape on my knee. It lost it's stick in about two days. Plus the physical therapist really wanted to see how the scar was healing.
This photo was taken June 20. Yep, Frankenstein would be proud! There's lots of swelling and bruising. You can definitely see the progress between this photo and the one above. I find it amazing how quickly the body heals. All the time fighting my SLE Lupus. I had to stay off my medications until seven weeks after the surgery. I felt it; emotionally and physically. For three weeks I was crying at a drop of a hat and thinking "why did I do this." I had my right knee done in 2010 so I know what a difference the surgery makes but at this point I just didn't care. I was miserable.
June 18. My leg is in the CPM machine. I LOVE this machine. It continually moves your leg without any effort from you. It doesn't build muscle but it helps to move the joint so it doesn't get stiff. I would usually ice my knee while in the machine. I was sent home with the bandage. I wonder what it looks like underneath? Notice the toes? I treated myself to a pedicure right before surgery.
WARNING: THE NEXT PHOTO IS UGLY!!
June 13. Yikes. I just HAD to look under the bandage didn't I. I think my physical therapist wanted to take a look. She started coming to the house the day after I was released. I had the surgery on June 8 and was released June 10. They had me up and walking the afternoon of the surgery. Well, maybe not walking exactly. I did have to prove that I could get up stairs before they would release me. I came home with oxygen too. One benefit of that is that it helps you heal. Bonus.
If you need a knee replacement I'd definitely recommend it. I had the same orthopedic surgeon for both knees and the experiences were totally different. The first time I didn't have SLE Lupus or the blood clotting disorder. I wonder if I bruised so badly because of that. I now take a baby aspirin every day and carry bandaides in my purse.
Thanks for all the well wishes and prayers. I'm so glad that I'm coming to the next chapter of having two good knees and being able to walk like a normal person.