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Author Topic: what to expect after meniscus surgery  (Read 2950 times)

Offline muffinandjezebel

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what to expect after meniscus surgery
« on: December 25, 2005, 01:18:13 AM »
I'm having a piece of meniscus removed arthroscopically next Friday and didn't ask the OS:  how soon before I can walk up stairs:take a bath;  how long to drive; when can I go back to walking my three large dogs. When will I get a brace? does the OS prescribe it or do I just go somewhere and pick one out? My ACL is gone but i'm not having surgery on it so I think he wants me to have a brace.  How long will the pain last after the surgery? I'm a little nervous about this.  They said the procedure is one hour.  Does that sound right?

Offline studentsu

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Re: what to expect after meniscus surgery
« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2005, 05:04:54 PM »
Hi,

I've had two surgeries in the last 4 months, both to remove tears in my right medial meniscus. The procedures were carried out by different surgeons.  The first operation was done under general anaesthetic, the second under an epidural. General anesthetics make me very sick (in spite of anti-emetics), so the epidural was infinetely better. If the tear had been repairable, I would have to have worn a fixed brace (for a number of weeks), but as it had to be removed instead, no brace and I had to prove I could walk and negociate stairs before leaving hospital after day surgery. Pain after the surgery was manageable , but I wasn't able to walk my kids to school for about a week afterwards. You may need a dog walker for a couple of weeks.
I could have a bath the very next day, but make sure you have someone in earshotwho can help you get out if necessary. You may find a shower less traumatic, but will have to protect the knee with something waterproof for a few days. I could drive a couple of days after, (but you may need to check with your insurance company). My proceedures lasted about 45minutes.
I am not yet pain free 4 weeks after my second surgery, and I was not  pain free between the first and second surgeries. I do (or did) a lot of sport, if this is important to you, be very clear with your surgeon and physio about what you can do and when after your surgery. Hope this helps.

Offline SheriBerry

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Re: what to expect after meniscus surgery
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2006, 10:32:44 PM »
I had surgery the 29th of December (arthroscopic) and had general anesthesia. I got nauseous once, which, i thought was ok for general. I personally preffered general because I did not care to see anything stuck in my leg. I went in at 12:30, woke up about 2:30, surgery was about an hour... they kept me till 4:30, gave me pain pills, and some crackers to take pills with. I stayed on my couch with lots of pillows, and plenty of quilts on back of couch, and my coffee table had everything I needed: bottles of pain meds, as well as a timer (comes in handy when you can't remember what time you took your last meds) remote control for T.V., crossword puzzles and pencils,2 clean towels,hydrogen peroxide, and cotton balls, scissors, and gauze/tape for new dressings,hand lotion for dry parts of body (reduces itching , but not suggested for wound area.),cordless phone, doctor's phone number and other needed numbers, a big bowl for nausea (just in case), a cooler full of ice, juices, bottled water, soft drinks,( wish it was beer) and lunchables, as well as 2 spare gel ice packs.  My surgery was done as a day surgery to remove part of my meniscus, and I had no other injury. The day of surgery, i slept thanks to all of the pain meds. Day2 was the worst day for me. they removed the drainage pouch that was on my leg in the morning and it continued to seep blood and other stuff.. Doc said I could walk out unassisted if I felt like it... did not feel like it was ready for any pressure. I propped leg up and iced, but continued to have lots of seepage from where drain was removed for another day. Day three, i rested all day, and did not attempt to put weight on leg, today (day 4) i am hobbling unassisted and with a little soreness, but ice really seems to help. I won't be doing any stairs unassisted for a little while, as i live on the 2nd floor of my apartment I would suggest having someone there to take care of you for first 2 days if possible. As far as bathing is concerned, I am sponge bathing for 2 weeks. no showers. I crawl in tub with help(husband), bend knee as much as i can and fill water to below knee. My doc suggested that the sponge bathing is better because all of the dead skin cells and grime from the upper part of my body may drip on incisions and stitches, even with waterproof wrap and plastic bag on leg. The germs may get trapped and increase infection chances. I ususally fill bath up, use liquid antibacterial soap, new sponge, and a cup to rinse off with.. i then drain tub, fill again to below knee, and just rinse any leftover grime and soap off. The biggest thing is getting in and out of tub, and make sure that you have a mat or towel to step onto when you get out. Slipping would be very bad! I usually change any dressing at that time using hydrogen peroxide and cotton balls,gauze, and sterile tape. As for the dogs, you might want to ask a friend, or hire help for a few weeks. You probably won't be able to comfortably walk the distance that you need to to take care of your dogs right.Plus, you don't want the dogs to drag you around if they decide to chase a neighborhood cat or something.  Also, try to lift your leg, move your ankle, flex/stretch calf/thigh muscles about 10 minutes out of every hour. This will keep from developing clots in the legs, and also gives you an activity to do. If pain becomes really bad, try positioning leg differently, and take 10 deep breaths.I know it sounds kind of cheesy, but it really seemed to help.Anyway, best of luck with surgery!As far as a brace is concerned, i did not need one, but I think the os will fit you with one the day after surgery, as they have those things in supply at their offices, or if it is not carried at the office, he will give you a prescription and should reccomend a place to get it.