I've been lurking a bit, very glad
to have found this site about a day or 2 after my accident. I've learned a lot
so far from reading and really appreciate everyone's help and insight.
I have most of my info on the accident in my signature, but some extra background. 1st off, yes it was New Year's eve, no I was not even drunk! In terms of my physical health background, I'm grateful for having discovered dance at 20 which I've kept up most of my life. Before the accident, I was taking dance classes 3x/week. I take modern dance with a wonderful teacher here in Chicago, named Molly Shanahan. She has her own company, Mad Shak. I'm not a professional, but do it b/c it feels so wonderful and has kept me in shape and very much healthy both physically and mentally. My first thought after my accident and reaching down to feel my knee cap split in 2 was "will I dance again?"
I've been afraid to ask the dr. but many of the posts here give me much hope.
So, I have some questions
. I am assuming ORIF basically means the surgery; if so I'll put that in my signature? It was outpatient surgery that lasted about 90 min. I had a 2-piece displaced lateral patella fracture which the dr. put back together with a screw (or maybe more--still getting up to speed on the questions and will be requesting the medical record) what was a relatively clean break. He used sutures rather than the metal wires to do the butterfly around the patella. At the first post-op visit he said there was quite a bit of soft-tissue damage, by which I think he means the retinaculum on either side were detached which he repaired.
I'm absolutely grateful that I have been relatively pain fee. I was given a vicoden prescription after the accident (There was a week between accident/surgery) and fairly quickly moved to 1 pill at night w/ a slight restart right after surgery. I go for many days w/o any pills at all.
I've been steadfast as far as elevating the knee. I wish the ER had been clearer about the definition of elevation, b/c at first I wasn't clear on what that meant. My husband understood "keep knee elevated" as my lying flat. The dr. clarified 4 days after the accident, saying the knee should be elevated (i.e. above the heart) while I lay flat 22-23/24 hrs. So, I have a question (which I'll hopefully get clarification on from the doc): once I start PT, how much do I reduce the number of hours of elevation. I get that it's all about reducing swelling, but I also worry that I'm losing muscle tone. I think it'd be great to have concrete guidelines like 23/24 hours elevation for x days; ??/24 hrs elevation one start PT, etc. But, I know every one's different. I assume, too, that PT will increase the likelihood of pain and swelling.
My doc has also said no weight bearing. I've read some people are doing some and again I guess that depends.
The doc gave me a foam wedge w/ a nice channel in it which makes my knee feel very secure for sleeping. I've been lucky about sleep as well. Not a back sleeper, generally, but let's just say it was my only option. I'm also lucky in that my attitude has in general been very good. Absolutely, one day at a time (though today, I did have a little cry over the fact that I've missed 9 dance classes. But, my dance teacher assures me there are many ways to dance! I've been able to keep busy; in fact I'm quite enjoying the time off from work. As the days go by, I feel much less vulnerable. At first I kept jerking awake feeling like I was falling.
I'm sure once I post this, I'll think of more. Thanks for listening!